Monthly Archives: December 2011

Miami drops opener at NMU, 2-1

Northern Michigan’s Brian Nugent scored at 17:50 of the third period to break a 1-1 tie and someone named Jared Coreau made 25 saves as #18 Miami dropped a 2-1 decision on Friday night at the Berry Events Center in Marquette, Mich.

Miami outshot the Wildcats 26-17 on the evening but could muster just one goal, from junior defenseman Steven Spinell of all people. This against a team that dressed just 17 skaters, played its back-up goaltender, had three starting defensemen sit out due to suspension and had exactly one win in their previous eight games.

That pretty much says it all.

This team has me completely confused and sits tied with Michigan State for 6th place in the CCHA — though the Spartans have two league games in-hand. A loss in the series finale Saturday night would allow Northern Michigan to pass the RedHawks in the CCHA standings as their roller coaster season continues. Worse, the consistent manner in which this team continues to allow late third period goals is astounding. Here’s a quick run down of the late third period tallies that have doomed the season thus far.

Oct. 7 vs. Bemidji – score tied 3-3, BSU scores at 18:05, wins 5-3

Oct. 28 vs. Lake State – Miami trails 4-3, Lakers score at 18:03, win 5-3

Nov. 12 vs. Michigan – Miami leads 3-2, U-M scores at 16:06, game ends in 3-3 tie

Nov. 19 vs. BG – Miami leads 4-3, BG scores at 18:48, game ends in 4-4 tie

Dec. 2 vs. NMU – score tied 1-1, NMU scores at 17:50, wins 2-1

Needless to say, Saturday’s game is a must-win lest the RedHawks allow the momentum of the 6-0-2 streak and Denver Cup championship to waft silently away.

Notes

– Cody Reichard started the game allowing one goal on three shots before giving way to anointed starter Connor Knapp who entered at the 9:39 mark of the first period. Knapp was denied the chance to start by head coach Enrico Blasi because he was late to the team’s breakfast. Presumably Reichard starts Saturday night.

– Spinell’s goal was just the third of his Miami career (85 games).

Weekend Preview: Miami v. Northern Michigan

Coming off last weekend’s sweep of Providence and Denver at the Denver Cup Classic, # 18 Miami (8-6-2, 4-4-2-1 CCHA) is again on the road as they travel to Marquette, Mich. to take on the Northern Michigan University Wildcats (5-6-3, 2-5-3-2 CCHA) in a two-game CCHA series.

Last weekend Miami concluded an unbeaten November (6-0-2) by claiming the second Denver Cup in school history defeating Providence and # 10 Denver by 6-2 and 4-2 scores, respectively. The RedHawks were led by junior forward Reilly Smith as he was named the most outstanding player in the tournament, freshman forward Austin Czarnik and senior goaltender Cody Reichard who played outstanding in Miami’s win over Denver on Saturday night. All three RedHawks were named to the all tournament team and all three were named CCHA players of the month for November capping quite a turnaround from October’s dismal 2-6 start.

While Miami enters on a roll, Northern Michigan comes into play having won their last game 2-1 over visiting Michigan State on November 19. However, that win snapped an eight-game winless streak and cost the Wildcats the services of three defensemen who all received DQ’s as a result of the “pleasantries” that occurred at the end of Saturday night’s contest. According to Matt Wellens of the Marquette Mining Journal, sophomore Wade Epp, junior Kyle Follmer and junior captain Scott Macaulay will all sit out Friday night’s game along with senior forward Andrew Cherniwchan who will miss the weekend due to injury. The Wildcats will dress just 17 skaters Friday and move several forwards back to defense to accommodate for their missing teammates.

Considering this, Miami needs to jump on NMU quickly on Friday and hope to carry momentum into Saturday night’s finale. The RedHawks really have no excuse to do any less than split in Marquette even though the RedHawks’ all-time record there is just 7-16-1. Miami has won the previous four in the series but still trails all-time 19-31-3 as the Wildcats beat up on Miami in the 80s as the program was in the early days of existence.

Though defensively hobbled on Friday, Miami must still find a way to beat senior netminder Reid Ellingson who has been outstanding this year with a 2.31 goals-against average and .925 save percentage. The Wildcats are led offensively by seniors Justin Florek (7-4-11) and Tyler Gron (6-3-9). The leading assist man on the team is junior defenseman Kyle Follmer with 1-8-9.

While I think we should sweep, I get the feeling we’ll split.

Notes

– Here is a link to the Miami game notes.

– Coverage from John Boyle of the Dayton Daily News.

– Coverage from Upper Michigan Source.

 

 

North Dakota to Begin Transition Away from Fighting Sioux Nickname

Here’s an interesting article about the end of the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo. Apparently, today is the beginning of the transitional period where the law in the state of North Dakota that protected the nickname has ended and the transition to a new name will officially begin.

We at Miami remember how that worked for this university as the athletic teams were stripped of the “Redskins” nickname and old Indian-head logo, and played basically as the “Red and White” for a year or so until the RedHawks name was settled upon. But, the true transition took years. In fact, Miami was initially asked to drop the Redskins name by the Miami tribe in the early 1970s, but of course the school did not comply until 1996, and it didn’t disappear from Miami’s athletic teams until the end of the following year.

And, just earlier this year, Miami issued a statement saying the old logo could no longer be used or sold on merchandise, even though it had been updated to conform with the new “block M” logo and even still hung in Steve Cady Arena (thanks Happy Girl) until the beginning of the season. So, though Miami officially changed the nickname 15 years ago, you can still purchase a T-shirt with it in Oxford shops or online until at least the current supply of such merchandise is exhausted. In other words, until very recently, you could find the Indian-head logo on or around campus without much difficulty. But, it sounds now like that will be a thing of the past.

The point for Fighting Sioux fans and alums is to embrace change knowing it’s going to take time for events to unfold. And, as an alum of a school that’s already gone through such drastic change, at the end of the day, it’s still going to be North Dakota just as Miami has, and always will be, Miami University. If you can’t get past that, then perhaps you should reevaluate your relationship with your school. And, that’s something I’ve said to Miami fans and alums just the same.

NOTE

For the record, the name of this blog is not intended to demonstrate support for the old nickname, but rather, honor the tradition of the university’s athletic programs by using the old nickname as a reminder of how far the hockey program has come over the past 30+ years. The writers and editors of Redskin Warriors each fully supported the name change and have no ongoing concerns or delusions of grandeur about it. The name Redskin Warriors is not politically motivated in any way, shape or form.