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Monday, January 09, 2006

ACHA Weekend Round-Up, Jan. 9

Story and photo courtesy of ACHAHockey.org

Michigan Collegiate Hockey Conference All-Star Game

MIDLAND, MI - The best players in the Michigan Collegiate Hockey Conference came to Midland, MI to play in the 6th Annual MCHC All-Star Game & Skills Competition.

Northwood University, Oakland University, Lawrence Tech University, and Calvin College (split) represented the East while Lansing CC, Hope College, Muskegon CC, and Calvin College (split) represented the West.

MCHC-West won the skills competition 8-5. The skills competition included Speed Skating, Breakaway, Hardest Shot, 3-0, Shooting Accuracy, and Rapid Fire. After the skills competition, the score remained on the board and the MCHC West vs. East All-Star Game started.

The MCHC East came back from an 3 point deficit, to tie it up late in the third period of the All-Star Game. The East All-Stars kept it going until the end of the game and finished with the win.

Final score MCHC-East All-Stars 15, MCHC-West All-Stars 13.

For more photos, please click here to visit the ACHA Division-III home page.
OU sweeps Western Michigan
By Matt Mackinder

Oakland University played a home-and-home weekend series against ACHA DI Western Michigan, taking both games by the score of 6-3. Friday night marked the first home game of the second semester and drew a great crowd.

"It's always nice to see the fan support in the stands," commented Oakland assistant coach JR Dunn. "It really adds to the great atmosphere for OU hockey."

Oakland would not leave the fans disappointed as Dan Oleksy would open the scoring with a shorthanded goal just 2:23 into the game and Will McMahon would net a power-play tally to take a 2-1 lead into the dressing room.

"The second period has been our period all season long,” OU head coach Sean Hogan said. “We just reminded the guys to stay focused and really take it to them in the second.”

The Grizzlies did just that in scoring three straight goals in the second to take a 5-1 lead after two. Oakland would get second period goals from Jonah Rogowski, Brent Cooper and McMahon.

The third period caught the Grizzlies hibernating, as Western Michigan would get two goals including a power play strike. It wouldn't be enough for the visiting Stallions as OU would cruise to a 6-3 victory.

Chris Joswiak turned aside 28 Stallion shots.

"It's always nice to get that first win after having all that time off," stated Hogan.

The Grizzlies would travel Saturday night to take on the Stallions at Lawson Ice Arena on the campus of Western Michigan. Oakland received goals from five different players, including two from McMahon, giving him a five-point weekend. Others scoring for OU were freshman Jeff Einheuser, Rogowski, Cooper and Oleksy.

Andrew Hansen made 30 saves in net for the Grizzlies.

"I am very happy with getting the four points this weekend,” Hogan said. “We need every point we can get to stay atop the Central Region rankings. Davenport is just waiting for us to slip up.”

News and Notes:
The OU power play went 3-for-20 on the weekend, an anemic 15 percent. That brings the OU power play to 35-for-133 or 26 percent…Oakland finished the ACHA DI portion of their schedule undefeated, a perfect 5-0, against the ACHA's top division.

OU Welcomes:
Defenseman Dale Swims joins OU from last years national champion Michigan State University squad. Swims will be earning a second degree from OU in biology as he works toward medical school.

"We are very lucky to get a player of Dale's caliber at Oakland,” Hogan said. “He has been a tremendous player in the ACHA and I look forward to seeing him in the OU Black and Gold.”

"Dale is a great asset to any program,” added Dunn.”He is a top player and a leader on and off the ice."

Next Up:
It doesn't get any easier for the Grizzlies as they will play three games this weekend against top-notch ACHA competition. Thursday, OU will travel to Windsor, Ontario, to take on the Saints of St. Clair College. OU lost to the varsity Saints, 3-2 in overtime, at the ONYX early in the season.
Oakland will then travel across state to take on archrival Davenport University in Grand Rapids, and then come back home to take on National semi-finalist Wagner College.

"We will really see what we are made of in these next two weeks,” said Dunn. “I have confidence that our guys will work hard and focus to get the job done.”

Biggest game in the Central? That's what the word around the league is for Friday's Oakland versus Davenport game. Davenport comes in on an astounding 15-game win streak, the longest in the league. DU's last loss? A 5-1 loss to Oakland back in October. Davenport has never beaten Oakland in the brief history of the rivalry, but has never failed to give OU all it can handle. The winners of this game will more than likely receive enough first place votes to put them atop the Central region.

"It's one of the biggest (rivalries) around,” noted Hogan. “They are a very talented team, well coached and disciplined. We will have to play A-plus hockey to get the job done.

“We just need to take it one game at a time against them. It doesn't matter what happened last semester or last season. The focus needs to be on today and the task at hand."

Lakers start New Year with Sweep

By Chris Moore

Grand Rapids, Michigan - Grand Valley returned from the break this weekend, facing off against what turned out to be a be dirty Robert Morris Springfield team for two games at home. Last year, RMC surprised the Lakers and split with them and the Lakers were ready for two tough games this weekend.

On Friday GVSU quickly controlled play, scoring two power play goals in front of a very vocal crowd. Brandon Rood scored his first career goal for GVSU and Dean Watkins added another to give the Lakers a two goal lead going into the break. Springfield's true colors started to show in the second, as the Eagles were penalized many times, and GVSU spent most of the period on the powerplay. Uninspired play killed the Lakers, however, and though GVSU added two goals, Springfield fired back with three in the period. Going into the 3rd up 4-3, GVSU was determined to turn it around and dominated the period, scoring five goals. Phil Murray added two goals in the final period to his two that he scored in the second for a four goal game. Jeff Tejchma, Robb Higgins and Nate Morang each added a goal as well to help GVSU take the game 9-4. Final shots were 48-24 in GVSU's favor. Chris Moore picked up his 9th win in net.

Fans attending Saturday's game were treated to a game that was truly one of the most bizarre games in college hockey history. After a first period where GVSU came out ahead 1-0 on Phil Murray's fifth goal of the weekend, sportsmanship went out the door for Springfield. In one of the most pathetic showings by any team, RMC fell down early in the second and then decided that if they weren't going to win, they would attempt to injury as many of GVSU's players as they could. Full swing slashes, butt-ends, dirty elbows to the head and getting into it with the again vocal fans were common place in the extremely long second period which found the Lakers scoring six goals. After five game misconducts to Eagle players and cumulating with the Springfield goaltender attempting to skate off the ice and fight the Laker fans, the coaches met and decided to call the game after the second period, making it a 7-2 GVSU victory. Springfield disgraced themselves with 129 penalty minutes compared to GVSU's 32 in just two periods of play. Watkins added two goals, while Morang, Mike Marquardt, Andrew Dykstra, and Andrew Beller each added one. It was Beller's first goal of the year and he was awarded player of the game. Final shots after 40 minutes were 51-13 in GVSU's favor. Troy VanderWeyden picked up the win in net.

GVSU travels to ACHA D1 Michigan-Dearborn for a game next Friday and then returns home with a match-up with #2 Davenport University on Saturday.

ACHA WRAP UP

D-I

#8 MICHIGAN-DEARBORN 2, #19 Kent State 1
#8 MICHIGAN-DEARBORN 4, #19 Kent State 2 (Empty Net Goal)

#18 EASTERN MICHIGAN 3, #9 Robert Morris (IL) 2
#18 EASTERN MICHIGAN 6, #9 Robert Morris (IL) 5

OAKLAND 6, Western Michigan 3
Western Michigan 3, OAKLAND 6

D-II

Robert Morris- Chicago Maroon 4, Davenport 5
Robert Morris- Chicago Maroon 0, Davenport 7

Ohio State 5, Ferris State 1
Ohio State 5, Ferris State 0

Grand Valley 9, Robert Morris –Springfield 4
Grand Valley 7, Robert Morris –Springfield 2

D-III

Alpena CC 11, Kalamazoo College 6

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