University of Minnesota
The Golden Gophers will open their 2011-12 season on October 7th hosting Sacred Heart.
One noteworthy change to the team is the return of Mike Guentzel. Guentzel, who’ll be in his second stint with the Golden Gophers, replaces departed assistant coach John Hill. Last season, Guentzel served as an assistant coach at Nebraska-Omaha. This season, he will serve as associate head coach. Guentzel’s return will particularly benefit Minnesota’s defense this season since he himself is a former Golden Gophers defenseman.
The University of Michigan Wolverines advanced to Saturday’s National Championship game after handing the North Dakota Fighting Sioux, the nation’s top-ranked team, a stunning 2-0 defeat in the second semi-final game at the Xcel Energy Center on Thursday night. The Wolverines got some brilliant goaltending from senior Shawn Hunwick, who stopped all 40 shots that he faced to post his fourth shutout of the season.
The game started out as a bit of a chess match, but it wasn’t long before North Dakota began to set the tone. Throughout the game, the Fighting Sioux did an excellent job of containing Michigan’s speed, but the Wolverines seemed to have an answer for whatever the Fighting Sioux was going to throw their way.
North Dakota got a scare at the 7:32 mark when freshman Brock Nelson (NYI) was taken off of the ice on a stretcher after crashing into the bad boards that followed a check delivered by Michigan junior Luke Glendenning. The good news for the Fighting Sioux was that the X-rays on Nelson were negative, but he did not return.
And then there were four.
This year, there will be a new national champion crowned and the four teams vying for college hockey’s ultimate prize are the University of Michigan, University of Minnesota-Duluth, University of North Dakota and the University of Notre Dame. With the exception of Minnesota-Duluth, the teams that comprise this year’s field are the same as those that made up the 2008 Frozen Four in Denver.
The 2011 Frozen Four, which will be held at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN, features 45 NHL prospects (although not all of them will play) that represent 23 of the 30 NHL teams. Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Edmonton, Philadelphia, Tampa Bay and Vancouver are the only NHL teams not represented.
Justin Jokinen, RW – Minnesota State – Mankato
Below is the list of all NCAA-bound players appearing on Central Scouting’s final rankings whose commitments (verbal or otherwise) to college programs have been verified. Unless otherwise indicated, all players listed will be with their respective programs in the fall of 2009.
An asterisk (*) denotes that the player has signed a National Letter of Intent (NLI). Ivy League schools (Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton and Yale) do not accept NLIs.
It is important to note that while every effort has been made to ensure thoroughness and accuracy, this listing may not be completely up to date.
^ – indicates a walk-on (non-scholarship) student-athlete