The Gopher men’s hockey team extended its disappointing season at least another weekend with a thrilling 3-2 overtime win over Mankato on Sunday. The undisputed star of the weekend has to be Alex Kangas who played all three games, only allowed 4 goals in something like 260 minutes and made some truly insane saves in overtime when a goal meant the end of the Gophers season.
The weekend series also demonstrated once again how punchless the Gophers’ scoring threat is. The Gophers went 0-12 in the powerplay and time and time again they would be in odd man rushes and weren’t able to even get a shot off, or someone was out of position, or if they got a shot, would miss the net. I’m not enough of a Gopher hockey rube to know if they have some scorers coming in next year, but I sure hope so. With Kangas, the Gophers may finally have that elite goalie they’ve been looking for, add some fire power and we may see a frozen four team once again.
Oh btw, can anyone now agree that the Wisconsin Badgers’ national championship of a couple of years ago was a complete fluke? They were lousy for years before 2006, they’ve been lousy since. It was a classic case of riding a super hot goalie to collect some hardware. Gotta wonder how many disappointing seasons Mike Eaves can squeeze out of his squad before he’s in hot water.
Gophers’ basketball had an amazing win on Friday and disappointing and winnable game on Saturday. No doubt that this team is NIT-quality only. It’s even amazing that Tubby was able to coax 20 wins out of a team that had only 9 wins a year ago. Although that may land more on Dan Monson that Tubby Smith. The Gophers offense was maddenly pedestrian at times this year and that really showed during the Illinois game. Late in the 2nd half when the Gophers needed a basket, all we saw was a bunch of dribbling while four other guys stood around. I hope that more reflects talent than coaching, I guess we’ll see next year when the talent level should greatly improve.
This week, Gopher wrestler’s defend their national championship, NIT starts, WCHA frozen five, and March Madness. Hopefully I’ll have my Sweet 16 up by the end of the week.