Monday, January 15, 2018

In the Pipeline: 1/15/2018

Quinnipiac was back on the road in ECAC play this past weekend losing in gut wrenching fashion on Friday night to Dartmouth in the final 10 seconds before tying Harvard 2-2 the next afternoon. The Bobcats played well enough to win against the Crimson but Harvard star Ryan Donato showed why he is probably the best player in college hockey with a game tying goal with less than three and half minutes left in the game. Quinnipiac now heads out to the desert next weekend for a pair of games against Arizona State. Let's take a look a how some of the future Bobcats did over the past week.

Matt Cassidy (photo by Ryan Kiedrowski)

BCHL Commits

Desi Burgart of the Surrey Eagles had a goal and an assist in Sunday's 7-0 win for the Surrey Eagles. In 38 games played, Burgart has 36 points (17 goals, 19 assists). Checkout this highlight reel goal by Burgart. He will be part of the 2018-2019 recruiting class.

Michael Lombardi had one assist this weekend for the West Kelowna Warriors in two games played. In 41 games played this season, Lombardi has 27 points (12 goals, 15 assists).

T.J. Friedmann picked up one assist in 3 games played this past week for the Victoria Grizzlies. The 1998 born center out of St. Louis, Missouri has 34 points (13 goals, 21 assists) in 43 games played. We recently had a Q&A with Friedmann.

AJHL Commits

Matt Cassidy had a strong week for the Brooks Bandits with 5 points (3 goals, 2 assists) which includes a hat trick on January 9th. In 35 games played this season, Cassidy has 32 points (14 goals, 18 assists) and is for 5th on the team in scoring.

USHL commits

Wyatt Bongiovanni has been out of the lineup for Muskegon due to a an undisclosed injury.

Dom Fensore picked up 2 assists for the U-17 team in USHL action over the weekend. In 15 USHL games played, Fensore has 6 assists. In other game action this season for the NTDP he has 18 assists. He was also featured in the NY Hockey Journal in an article by Jeff Cox.

Justin Robbins gave up 5 goals in 2 periods of action for the Chicago Steel against the Cedar Rapids Rough Riders. He was pulled after the second period and Chicago ended up winning 6-5 in a shootout. On the season he is 2-3 with a 4.63 goals against average and a .857 save percentage.

Matt Fawcett (photo by Winchendon School)

Prep Schools/High Schools

Matt Fawcett of the Winchendon School had a big week on the score-sheet. In 2 games played he had 3 goals, 4 assists as his team split a pair of games. He continues to lead all of New England Prep in scoring with 35 points (14 goals, 21 assists). He is averaging 2.50 points per game which also leads prep hockey.

Peter Diliberatore had one assist this past week for the Salisbury School. He played two games but the box score is not in from the second game yet. In 11 games played this season, he has 9 points (1 goal, 8 assists).

John Campomenosi had 2 goals for Don Bosco Prep in an 6-1 win over Morristown-Beard. On the season he has 13 points (4 goals, 9 assists).

NCDC commits

Gus Van Nes had 2 assists in one game played for the Junior Bruins this past week. The Netherlands born power forward has 45 points (13 goals, 32 assists) in 34 games played on the season. He will be the second ever Dutch born forward to play for Quinnipiac. This week he will take part in the NCDC all star game.

Daniel Winslow had one assist in two games played for the New Jersey Hitmen as his team split a pair of games this past weekend. In 29 games played he has 25 points (9 goals, 16 assists).

Midget Commits

Victor Czerneckianair took part in the HPHL tournament this weekend for the Selects U-15 team. No box scores are yet available.

Both Ethan Phillips and P.J. Fletcher took part in the U-16 part of the HPHL tournament but the box scores are also not yet available.

You can follow the BobcatsHockeyBlog on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Quinnipiac, Harvard skate to 2-2 tie

Quinnipiac at Harvard (photo copyright BobcatsHockeyBlog)
Quinnipiac and Harvard skated to a 2-2 tie on Saturday afternoon at Bright Hockey Center in Allston, MA. Harvard star and newly minted United States Olympian, Ryan Donato scored the equalizer with 3:27 to play in the third period salvaging a tie for the home team. Less than 24 hours after getting stunned in the final 10 seconds in a 4-3 loss to Dartmouth, Quinnipiac played tough against a Harvard squad that is starting to find its stride.

Quinnipiac goaltender Keith Petruzzelli (31 saves) saw his first start since November 25th against UMass Amherst. His last appearance was in late game action on December 8th against Maine. The freshman turned in his best effort of the season making many big saves especially late in overtime. Quinnipiac entered this game with one of the worst power plays in the country yet scored its first goal via the man advantage. 12:29 into the first period Bo Pieper cleaned up a rebound off Chase Priskie's initial shot in front of the net for his 6th goal of the season.

Harvard evened the score when freshman Jack Badini ripped a shot past Petruzzelli just 6:43 into the second period. With the teams trading some chances throughout the period it wasn't until late in the period that Quinnipiac once again capitalized on the power play. Brogan Rafferty fed Chase Priskie for a one timer past Merrick Madsen for his 6th goal of the season. 

Quinnipiac at Harvard (photo copyright BobcatsHockeyBlog)

Harvard controlled the play in third period while Petruzzelli stood tall for Quinnipiac. But for the Bobcats it is extremely tough to slow down Ryan Donato and he proved why he is the best player in college hockey this season. With Quinnipiac clinging to a lead Michael Floodstrand slid a pass across the crease to a wide open Donato who buried it high past Petruzzelli for his 17th goal in 17 games played. Big time players score big time goals and Donato has proven that during his collegiate career. Harvard had a chance to win it late in overtime as Ryan Donato couldn't handle a puck in front of Petruzzelli and his wrap around chance was thwarted as the buzzer sounded.  

Odeen Tufto (2 assists) had his 9th multi point game of the season for Quinnipiac who are now 8-12-3 on the season (4-7-2 ECAC). They are currently in 7th place in the ECAC standings one point behind Whitney Avenue rival Yale. Quinnipiac now heads out to the desert for a pair of games against Arizona State next weekend. 

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Saturday, January 13, 2018

Scouting the Enemy: Harvard Crimson

After falling to Dartmouth in the final 10 seconds of the game, Quinnipiac now faces a tall challenge of facing the Ryan Donato led Harvard Crimson in an afternoon matinee. The Bobcats at 8-12-2 are a middle of the pack team right now in the ECAC and are fighting just to try to maintain home ice in the first round of the ECAC tournament. Harvard comes in to this game off a 3-1 win over Princeton with Ryan Donato leading the way. 

Harvard Key Players: Ryan Donato (F), Jack Badini (F), Lewis Zerter-Gossage (F), Henry Bowlby (F), Adam Fox (D), John Marino (D), Rielly Walsh (D), Merrick Madsen (G)

Offensively Harvard's offense runs through Ryan Donato. He has scored 16 of teams 49 goals accounting for 32% of the goals scored this year. He is that important to Harvard and a big reason why he was team for the United States Olympic Team. Overall the Crimson are 19th in scoring at 3.06 goals per game. Lewis Zerter-Gossage (14 points) is second on the team in scoring while a trio of freshman in Henry Bowlby (10 points), Reilly Walsh (10 points) and Jack Badini (11 points) along with puck moving defenseman Adam Fox (10 points) pace the offense. The key is shutting down Donato, though its easier said than done. If Quinnipiac can contain Donato, then the Harvard offense is totally different team. The Harvard power play has been struggling this season at 16.67% (10-of-60) good for 41st in the country.

Harvard is a top 10 defensive team in the country with a lot of talent on the blue line. They give up 2.25 goals per game which ranks 10th. What makes the Harvard defense so good is their ability to transition the puck quickly led by Adam Fox (10 points). While he is not on the pace he set last season for points he is still a really good player that moves the puck extremely well. Joining him on the blue line are John Marino and Reilly Walsh two really talented defenseman. Senior Wiley Sherman has been a steady presence there as well. The penalty kill has been strong at 85.71% (54-of-63) which is good for 10th in the country. Quinnipiac went 0 for 5 on the man advantage against Dartmouth as it has seen struggles on the power play like they haven't seen in years.

Merrick Madsen has been the workhorse but Michael Lackey faced off against Quinnipiac the last time these two teams met. Madsen has seen starts in four of the last five games including starting and winning against Princeton on Friday. I'd expect him to get the start for Ted Donato's team. Madsen on the season is 5-5-2 with a 2.17 goals against average and a .923 save percentage. He is also riding a hot streak with a 4-0-1 streak in his last 5 games played.

Quinnipiac needs to salvage at least a point on this weekend after a stunning loss last night to Dartmouth. Consistency has been an issue all season and pucks haven't bounced Quinnipiac's way. Expect this game against Harvard to be a huge challenge as they ran over Quinnipiac in early December which has started their turnaround upwards in the ECAC standings.

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Friday, January 12, 2018

Quinnipiac falls to Dartmouth in final 10 seconds

Quinnipiac at Dartmouth (photo copyright BobcatsHockeyBlog)

For the first time in 11 years, Quinnipiac failed to beat Dartmouth College in game at least once in a season as the Big Green scored with under 10 seconds as a strange bounce goal by Will Graber was the difference in the game. Its been that kind of season for Quinnipiac with the bounces clearly not going their way as they have been in the past.

With Landon Smith out of the lineup due to an injury suffered in the Cornell game a new line of Nick Jermain, Tanner MacMaster and Odeen Tufto was formed and had all the scoring on the night for the Bobcats. Quinnipiac got the scoring started 10:27 into the opening period when he found the puck on his stick in the low slot burying it past Dartmouth goaltender Devin Buffalo. The Big Green responded just over a minute later on the 4th goal of the season from Corey Kalk. Quinnipiac then answered the Dartmouth goal less than a minute later when Odeen Tufto spun off a defender a found a loose puck in the slot and blasted it home. In the final minute of the period, Dartmouth tied the scored again on a goal by Daniel Warpecha who was open due to two Quinnipiac defenders tied up with one Dartmouth player.

Quinnipiac at Dartmouth (photo copyright BobcatsHockeyBlog)

In the second period, Dartmouth scored just 1:20 in on a power play goal by Collin Rutherford to take its first lead of the game. Quinnipiac tied it up again just after the 14 minute mark of the period when Odeen Tufto retrieved a puck in the corner and sent a no look pass in front of the net which was put in by MacMaster for his team leading 10th goal of the season.

The third period saw Quinnipiac put a bunch of pressure on Dartmouth with nothing to show for it. With the game looking like it was heading towards overtime, the Big Green stunned Quinnipiac with Graber's late goal. Odeen Tufto finished with a goal and two assists while Tanner MacMaster had two goals and Nick Jermain assisted on all three goals. Andrew Shortridge made 29 saves as he deserved a better fate for his performance. Quinnipiac was out shot for the first time since October 20th against Northeastern. They drop to 8-12-2 on the season (4-7-1 ECAC) and now head south to face Harvard on Saturday afternoon in a game that will appear in New England on NESN.

You can follow the BobcatsHockeyBlog on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Scouting the Enemy: Dartmouth Big Green

While the second semester has not started academically yet, the hockey part is in full swing. Quinnipiac opened the second half of the season with a 2-1 record last week with wins over UConn and Colgate and a 1-0 loss to Cornell. The Bobcats now head to Hanover, NH to face the Dartmouth Big Green who have played well of late with a 3-2-1 record in their last six games. That includes a road win against Denver, a tie against Minnesota Duluth and they also played Denver to a 1-0 loss as well. These two teams played to a 0-0 tie in Hamden back on December 2nd. 

Dartmouth Key Players: Corey Kalk (F), Will Graber (F), Alex Jasiek (F), Kevan Kilistoff (F), Daniel Warpecha (F), Quin Foreman (F), Matt Baker (F), Connor Yau (D), Devin Buffalo (G)

Half of the Dartmouth goals have been scored in the last six games so the offense seems to be heating up a bit. They potted five goals against Denver on the road and another six in an overtime win over RPI just last weekend. Even with the hot streak, the Big Green have the third worst offense in college hockey at 2.06 goals per game which is good for the worst in the ECAC. Some of the younger players have stepped up recently in Will Graber (3 goals, 5 assists), Quin Foreman (3 goals, 4 assists) and Matt Baker (5 goals, 1 assist). Seven of their top ten scorers are underclassmen which may bode well for the future. Corey Kalk and Kevan Kilistoff lead the team with 9 points apiece. Junior Alex Jasiek is second on the team with 8 points. The power play has been a struggle this season at 11.48% (7-of-61) good for 56th nationally. Quinnipiac has a strong penalty kill at a shade over 85% (74-of-87) good for 13th nationally.

Dartmouth is ranked 48th nationally in defense at 3.31 goals per game. Its a half a goal improvement since the last time Quinnipiac faced them. Seven times this season, Dartmouth has given up four goals per game. Connor Yau is one of the Big Green's better defenders but there is not one player back there that is a plus. Freshman Brandon Less is an even player with 3 assists in 15 games played this season. The penalty kill has gotten better to just a shade over 80% (46-of-57) good for 33rd nationally. Quinnipiac's power play has been bad maybe one of the worst it has been in years. They are 57th nationally at 11.39% (9-of-79). Only Arizona State, Alaska and Yale are worse than Quinnipiac on the power play.

Devin Buffalo is the entrenched starter and he did not play against Quinnipiac last time out due to injury. He has played well at times in the the last six games in which Dartmouth has gone 3-2-1. On the season he is 5-5-1 with a 3.04 goals against average and a .905 save percentage. Expect him to start on Friday night against Quinnipiac though it wouldn't surprise me if Adrian Clark who shutout Quinnipiac in the previous meeting gets the nod as he was very solid in that game.

Quinnipiac has played better in conference play since starting 0-4 going 4-2-1. They played well at times last weekend and probably could have beaten Cornell if it had some scoring. With a challenge looming the following day against Harvard, getting a win to start the weekend is a must.

You can follow the BobcatsHockeyBlog on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Q&A with Quinnipiac commit T.J. Friedmann

T.J. Friedmann, photo by Darren Stone, Times Colonist
The most recent Quinnipiac commit was T.J. Friedmann, a St. Louis, Missouri native currently playing for the Victoria Grizzlies in the BCHL. He committed to the Bobcats on December 29th and will be part of the 2019-2020 recruiting class giving him one more developmental season of junior hockey before coming to Hamden.  Listed at 6'2, 179 pounds, the 1998 born center that has a strong wrist shot and has good offensive skills. In 40 games played this season, Friedmann has 33 points (13 goals, 20 assists). The Bobcats Hockey Blog recently caught up with T.J. to discuss hockey and his commitment to Quinnipiac. Thanks to T.J. for the time he gave for this Q&A.

Jonathan Singer: First off congratulations. What are your thoughts and emotions like after making this decision?

T.J. Friedmann: I’m excited to be able to join a program like Quinnipiac. It feels good to finally know where I’ll be continuing my education and hockey career.

Jonathan Singer: When did you start playing hockey as a kid?

T.J. Friedmann: I learned to skate at 3-years-old and two years later I started playing the game.

Jonathan Singer: What are some of the reasons you got involved in the game?

T.J. Friedmann: When I was younger I would play ball hockey with my cousin at his house. Once I learned to skate, it was an easy transition into playing the game.

Jonathan Singer: It seems like the St. Louis area is starting to develop many high end prospects in recent years with the likes of Matt and Brady Tkachuk. Have some of the recent success of the St. Louis Blues contributed to that rise of the talent increase in the Missouri area?

T.J. Friedmann: I think so. The Blues organization has been doing a great job of giving back and helping with the development of kids through summer camps and the AAA Blues program. More and more kids are wanting to play hockey in the area now since they have such great role models to look up to.

Jonathan Singer: You played in the NAHL at a young age starting when you were 16. What did you learn from playing in that league at such a young age?

T.J. Friedmann: Playing in the NAHL at a young age helped me realize that my game and my body needed to mature if I wanted to have success at a high level of hockey. I started to see and recognize the work it takes to have success in juniors.

Jonathan Singer: After one season with Springfield you went back to major midgets to play for Victory Honda. What went into that decision to drop down a level?

T.J. Friedmann: I thought a year at midget major with coach Burke would be a great thing for my development. He’s done a great job with moving kids on and has a great track record with putting together competitive teams.

Jonathan Singer: Tell us about your overall recruiting experience. What factors went on deciding on Quinnipiac?

T.J. Friedmann: The recruiting process can be a little long, but Quinnipiac has always been a school I’ve been interested in. When they came to me with an offer I was very excited. When I toured the Quinnipiac campus, I quickly recognized the facilities were top notch, and the campus is the perfect size I was looking for.

Jonathan Singer: Tell us about some of your strengths as a player? After watching a few clips I can tell a strong wrist shot is one of them.

T.J. Friedmann: I think my biggest strength as a player would be that I am a strong two way center that can create offense but I also do a good job of staying responsible defensively.

Jonathan Singer: What are some of the areas of your game you want to improve upon for the rest of this season and next year in juniors before arriving at Quinnipiac?

T.J. Friedmann: I think I could get my first three steps a little quicker, overall making me a more explosive skater. Also, being 6’2, I think if I could put on a little more weight that would make me more of a threat on offense and help me knock guys off pucks defensively.

Jonathan Singer: Did the Quinnipiac coaching staff talk about what type of role they envision for you as a player?

T.J. Friedmann: I don’t know exactly where I’ll fit in on the depth chart, but I do know they want to keep me as a center when I come in.

Jonathan Singer: How has the coaching staff at Victoria helped mold you as a player the past two seasons?

T.J. Friedmann: The coaches here in Victoria do a great job developing kids into Division 1 and pro players. They utilize video for teaching points and we do a lot of drills to emulate game play in practice which in turn helps us prepare for many game situations.

Jonathan Singer: Is there any player you try to model your game after?

T.J. Friedmann: Being a center I try to model my game after Jonathan Toews. He’s a good two way center that can produce points and is a great leader.

Jonathan Singer: Tell us the type of person that the Quinnipiac University community is going to get in you?

T.J. Friedmann: I try to get involved with the community as much as possible to give back. Here in Victoria, we do a lot of visits to elementary schools to talk to kids about the importance of staying active, and I try to do as many of those as possible.

Jonathan Singer: What are some of the things you enjoy off the ice?

T.J. Friedmann: My favorite off ice activity would probably be hiking. Being from St. Louis, there’s not many places to do it, but up in Victoria that is something I like to do.

You can follow the BobcatsHockeyBlog on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.

Monday, January 8, 2018

In the Pipeline: 1/8/2018

Quinnipiac returned to ECAC action over the weekend and earned a split of the Colgate/Cornell road swing. They beat Colgate Friday night 4-3 in overtime after blowing a two goal lead in the final minute and fell to Cornell 1-0 the following night. The Bobcats are now 8-11-2 (4-6-1 ECAC) on the season. At this point of the year, Quinnipiac would need to win the ECAC tournament in order to return to the ECAC tournament as they are not in position to get an at-large berth. With that said let's take a look at how some of the future Bobcats did over the past week.

Desi Burgart (photo by the Surrey Now-Leader)

BCHL Commits

One of the newest commits for Quinnipiac had a nice week. Desi Burgart of the Surrey Eagles had a 3 point week (2 goals, 1 assist) in three games played helping Surrey to 2 wins this past week. On the season Burgart has 34 points (16 goals, 18 assists) in 35 games played. He will be part of the 2018-2019 recruiting class.

Ethan de Jong had 2 points (1 goal, 1 assist) in 3 games played for the Prince George Spruce Kings. The North Vancouver, BC native has 40 points (13 goals, 27 assists) in 35 games played and won a gold medal for Canada West at the World Junior A Challenge. He is expected to accelerate to the 2018-2019 recruiting class a source tells the BobcatsHockeyBlog, as he was originally due to be part of the 2019-2020 recruiting class.

Michael Lombardi had 3 points this weekend for the West Kelowna Warriors in three games played with two of them wins. In 39 games played this season, Lombardi has 26 points (12 goals, 14 assists). However his production since coming to West Kelowna in a trade is more impressive with 19 points in 23 games played.

Quinnipiac's most recent commit T.J. Friedmann had 3 goals in 3 games played this weekend for the Victoria Grizzlies. The 1998 born center out of St. Louis, Missouri has 33 points (13 goals, 20 assists) in 40 games played. He is committed for the 2019-2020 season. We will have a Q&A with Friedmann coming out on Tuesday January 9th so stay tuned.

T.J. Friedmann (photo by Darren Stone, Times Colonist)

USHL commits

Wyatt Bongiovanni had one assist in Muskegon's 3-2 win over the Dubuque Fight Saints on Friday. He was scratched due to injury in Saturday's game. In 26 games played this season, Bongiovanni has 24 points (12 goals, 12 assists) with 3 power play goals, 1 shorthanded goal and 2 game winning goals.

William Fällström had one assist for the Fargo Force in 2 games played this weekend. The the Sweden native now has 20 points (6 goals, 14 assists) in 28 games played.

Dom Fensore picked up 2 assists for the U-17 team in USHL action in Saturday's game against Des Moines. In 13 USHL games played, Fensore has 4 assists. In other game action this season for the NTDP he has 18 assists.

Prep Schools/High Schools

Matt Fawcett of the Winchendon school is leading all of New England Prep in scoring with 26 points (10 goals, 16 assist). He is averaging 2.36 points per game. Earlier this season he spent time in the USHL with the Sioux City Musketeers.

John Campomenosi had 3 assists for Don Bosco Prep in an 8-1 win over the The Hun School. He is off to a good start this season with 11 points (2 goals, 9 assists).

NCDC commits

Gus Van Nes picked up 3 assists in 3 wins for the Jr. Bruins over the weekend. The Netherlands born power forward has 43 points (13 goals, 30 assists) in 33 games played on the season. He will be the second ever Dutch born forward to play for Quinnipiac.

AJHL Commits

Matt Cassidy had a goal and an assist in Saturday's game for the Brooks Bandits. In 32 games played this season, Cassidy has 27 points (11 goals, 16 assists) and is tied for 5th on the team in scoring.

Midget Commits

Jacob Quillan had a 4 point weekend (2 goals, 2 assists) for the Steele Subaru Major Midgets. The 2002 born forward has had a strong year with 37 points (13 goals, 24 assists) in 30 games played. He is part of a trio of Nova Scotia born commits following Peter Diliberatore (2000) and Ethan Phillips (2001) as a talented players from the Atlantic province.

Victor Czerneckianair picked up an assist over the weekend for the Selects Academy U-15 team. In 36 games played this season he has 48 points (21 goals, 27 assists).

Ethan Phillips and P.J. Fletcher each had a goal and an assist in the Selects Academy U-16 7-1 win over the New Jersey Hitmen in USPHL play.

You can follow the BobcatsHockeyBlog on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.