Collin Adams feeling at home at center

101319 S GFH UNDHOCKEY CollinAdams JordanKawaguchi ShanePinto01.jpg
Forward Collin Adams celebrates his second period goal against Canisius with UND teammates Jordan Kawaguchi (29) and Shane Pinto (22) Saturday night at Ralph Engelstad Arena. Nick Nelson / Grand Forks Herald

Depth at the center position was expected to be a cause for concern for the UND hockey team this season.

It lost senior centermen Rhett Gardner and Nick Jones to graduation and there were plenty of questions about who would fill those roles.

UND may have found an unexpected answer: Collin Adams.

The junior forward started the season at left wing, but was moved to center last weekend for UND's home series against Bemidji State. Adams said it was the first time he's played center since his freshman season.

His performance likely dictated that he'll play more games up the middle this season.


Adams was one of UND's best players in a 2-1 overtime victory Friday night against the Beavers. He assisted on the game-tying goal in the third period and his ice time increased as the game progressed.

On Saturday, the Brighton, Mich., product tacked on another assist in UND's 4-1 win to complete the series sweep.

"I like it," Adams said of playing center, something he did in junior hockey as well. "Being center is more responsibility in your defensive zone, but you also get more puck touches. It was nice touching the puck a little more than you do as a winger. It also helps you on the offensive side. Being in the middle, you get more space and more time, so I liked it."

Adams will take a three-game point streak -- the longest of his college career -- into Saturday night's U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game against Michigan Tech in Ralph Engelstad Arena.

UND coach Brad Berry didn't reveal the lines he plans to use for the game against the Huskies, but it wouldn't be surprising if Adams gets another crack at center.

Adams went 16-16 (.500) on faceoffs over the weekend, which was an improvement from senior Westin Michaud (17-30), who was moved to wing and scored the overtime winner Friday night.

Adams said he felt his speed -- one of his best attributes -- helped at center.

"As a winger, you're more stagnant," Adams said. "As a center, you get to build up some speed coming through the zone. It was nice having that speed and helped me create offense."

Schlossman has covered college hockey for the Grand Forks Herald since 2005. He has been recognized by the Associated Press Sports Editors as the top beat writer for the Herald's circulation division four times and the North Dakota sportswriter of the year once. He resides in Grand Forks. Reach him at
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