Category Archives: Cody Reichard

>RedHawks Pick Up Swag

>Farmington Hills, Mich. – If postseason awards are any indication of future results, Miami should be in great shape during the remainder of the 2011 college hockey season.

Miami placed six players on the CCHA All Conference teams with a league-leading three on the first team.

Seniors Andy Miele and Carter Camper were joined by sophomore Reilly Smith as the RedHawks offensive stars dominated the first team.

Miele, the nation’s top scorer and leading candidate for the Hobey Baker Award was a unanimous selection to the first team, the first CCHA player to do so since 2008. The senior assistant captain was named to the conference’s second team last year while Camper was honored with a first team selection for the second time in his career after earning honorable mention a season ago.

For Smith, the league’s leading goal scorer, it was his first selection to the CCHA All Conference team in just his second year in the league. Smith potted 8 goals and 20 points a season ago but has tripled his goal output (24) and more than doubled his point total (44) in a breakout season.

Junior defenseman Chris Wideman was named to the second team after earning a spot on the All-Rookie team two seasons ago. For the year, Wideman had 2-18-20 in 34 games as the offensive minded defenseman has eclipsed the 20 point barrier in each of his three seasons.

Senior Pat Cannone and junior Cody Reichard were named honorable mention to round out the RedHawk contingent.

The three RedHawks on the first team is a school record.

>CCHA Round 2 – Miami v. Alaska

>Oxford, Ohio – If defense wins championships, then offense wins games. Fortunately for the seventh ranked Miami RedHawks, they have plenty of each.

The 2010-11 edition of the Miami RedHawks (19-9-6, 16-7-5-2, 3rd CCHA) finished second overall in team scoring and first overall in team defense in the CCHA. It was another stellar year for the program that continues to set the bar higher and higher.

Led by seniors Andy Miele (19-42-61) and Carter Camper (17-33-50), Miami boasts three of the top 17 scorers in the nation, and two of the top four, with sophomore Reilly Smith pacing the RedHawks with 24 goals.

Junior netminders Cody Reichard and Connor Knapp once again turned in solid seasons with each posting goals-against averages around 2.10 and save percentages near .910. Reichard leads Miami in minutes played, victories (12) and shutouts (3), while Knapp’s 1.76 goals-against average in conference play was best in the CCHA.

Under Dallas Ferguson, Alaska (16-15-5, 10-13-5-3, 7th CCHA) has taken a defense-first approach. It’s no understatement to say the Nanooks do not score much. But, while their offense ranked 8th overall in the CCHA, only Miami and Ferris State allowed fewer goals. Led by junior netminder Scott Greenham, Alaska allows an average of just 2.31 goals per game. In fact, Greenham played all but ten minutes of empty net time in goal this year for the Nanooks and earned second team All-CCHA honors for his efforts.

This weekend offers an opportunity for Miami to advance to Joe Louis Arena to play in the conference semi-finals for the third time in four years. Importantly, this series against Alaska offers the chance for at least two games against a current TUC and a chance for the RedHawks to improve their record in that PairWise category. If Miami can win this weekend’s series, and win at least one game in Detroit against another TUC, they will solidify themselves as a #2 seed in the NCAA tournament. Should the RedHawks finally capture the Mason Cup, it’s conceivable that Miami could earn a #1 seed in the national tournament.

Prediction

Miami has played just two games since February 12. They will enter the weekend’s series rested, and presumably, healthy. But it’s possible there could be some rust. The RedHawks are playing their best hockey of the season. They enter the weekend riding a 9-game unbeaten streak. The seniors are leading by example and you know they want one more chance at a Mason Cup and I think they’ll get it.

Miami advances to the semifinals in two games, 2-1 and 4-1.

Notes:

  • Miami is 33-14-5 all-time against Alaska and 18-7-2 in Oxford
  • Miami is 1-4 all-time as the #3 seed in the CCHA playoffs
  • Miami and Alaska have split each of the last four regular-season series in Oxford
  • Miami won the only other previous playoff meeting 2 games to 1 back in 1994 in Oxford
  • The RedHawks haven’t made it to the Joe in an odd numbered year for the CCHA Championship weekend since 1997
  • Hobey Baker Award front runner Andy Miele enters the weekend having notched a point in 13 consecutive games. During the streak, he’s scored 28 points

>Miami Sweeps Michigan in Critical CCHA Series

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Reilly Smith scored two goals to lead Miami to a 3-0 victory over Michigan

Oxford, Ohio – Sophomore Reilly Smith netted his 20th and 21st goals of the season and senior Andy Miele contributed three assists leading Miami to their 16th victory of the season sweeping Michigan 3-0. By virtue of Miami’s 4-2 win on Friday, and with Notre Dame idle, the RedHawks move into first place in the CCHA with four regular season games to go.

Wearing special commemorative jerseys to honor the one year anniversary of Brendan Burke’s passing, and with the entire Burke family present, the RedHawks used the emotion of the evening to jump out to a 2-0 lead after one period. Smith tallied twice, first on a nifty wraparound after picking up a loose puck behind the net. Miele fed Cameron Schilling at the point who fired a one-timer wide of the net. Smith found the puck and moved on his backhand to beat Michigan netminder Shawn Hunwick who was out of position after challenging Schilling’s shot.

Smith would tally again at 15:16 of the opening period when Miele found Trent Vogelhuber open at the Michigan blueline. Vogelhuber would move in alone on Hunwick but his backhand attempt was stopped. However, Smith tracked down the rebound and fired a sharp wrister to the top corner over a prone Hunwick who was knocked down in stopping Vogelhuber’s chance.

Senior Pat Cannone would add the RedHawks final goal of the evening on the powerplay when Miele fired a cross-ice pass to Cannone who one-timed it past Hunwick. Cannone’s 13th goal of the season came at 13:42 of the second period and just after two Wolverines took penalties on the same play giving Miami a 5×3 advantage.

Junior netminder Cody Reichard was solid for the second consecutive night picking up his third shutout of the season and the 10th of his career. Reichard is now 4-1 in his past five games against Michigan with the one loss coming in the CCHA Tournament last March in Detroit and needs only two more shutouts to tie David Burleigh’s career record of 12.

While not facing too many significant chances, Reichard did stop Matt Rust on a semi-breakaway and also stymied Michigan on seven powerplay attempts. For the night, Reichard made 23 saves and senior defenseman Vincent LoVerde blocked seven shots as the RedHawks picked up their fifth team shutout of the season.

Next weekend, the RedHawks remain at home for a key two-game series with Western Michigan. Former Miami assistant coach Jeff Blashill has the Broncos riding a 13-game unbeaten streak behind the stellar play of freshmen Chase Balisy and former Miami commit Shane Berschbach. WMU is currently tied for 11th in the Pairwise rankings, just six points behind Miami in fourth place in the CCHA standings so these games are big for both teams.

Notes

  • Miele leads the nation with 54 points in just 30 games.
  • Miami features three of the top 10 scorers in the nation with Miele (54 points) and Carter Camper (47 points) first and second, and Reilly Smith (38 points) in 10th place to pace the RedHawks.
  • Miami and Western Michigan split a series earlier this year in Kalamazoo with the Broncos winning 5-3 on Friday and Miami returning the favor 5-1 on Saturday. The Friday game saw Miami tie the score at 2 after falling behind 2-0, but the Broncos pulled away with three in the third period. On Saturday, Miami dominated from start to finish.
  • Miami leads the series with WMU 52-50-9 but the RedHawks have dominated the series over the past several years and lead 30-20-3 in Oxford.
  • Western Michigan was 8-20-8 last year. New coach Jeff Blashill has the Broncos at 15-6-9 overall this year good enough for fourth in the CCHA.
  • Miami is now tied for 16th in the Pairwise rankings. Two wins against Western Michigan, a team ranked ahead of them, would go a long way to earning the RedHawks another NCAA tournament berth.

>Miami Musings

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Carter Camper was buzzing last weekend in frigid Alaska

Here are some mid-week thoughts on the #1 ranked Miami RedHawks.

Pairwise Rankings
It’s hard to believe, but Miami has just five series remaining in the regular season meaning it’s time to start paying real attention to the rankings. Right now, Miami is tied with Denver atop the Pairwise with the slight advantage in RPI to the RedHawks. Pairwise Rankings

There are four regions in the 2010 NCAA Tournament which culminates with the Frozen Four at Ford Field in Detroit, Michigan on April 8 and 10. This year’s four regional sites are St. Paul, Minn., Ft. Wayne, Ind., Wooster, Mass. and Albany, N.Y. Obviously, the Ft. Wayne regional would be the closest in terms of travel for Miami and that would probably be where the RedHawks are sent as long as the host school, Notre Dame, does not get into the tournament as a #4 seed. Because the host school must be sent to their regional regardless of seed, it could interfere with first-round matchups. That is, teams from the same conference cannot play each other in the first round. The problem could occur if Miami earns a #1 seed whereby the tournament selection committee sends the top seeds to the closest regional to help boost attendance. Accordingly, Miami could not go to Ft. Wayne as a #1 if Notre Dame squeaks in as a #4. Currently, Notre Dame is just 22nd in the Pairwise, but we don’t know exactly where the cutoff line will be in selecting the 16 teams meaning we do not know how high Notre Dame would have to finish in the Pairwise to get in, assuming the Irish do not win the CCHA’s auto-bid by winning the conference tournament. Something else to consider are potential upsets that effectively “steal” at-large bids. For instance, Bemidji State will get into the tournament as an at-large team should they not win the final CHA tourney, so the Irish will be rooting for the Beavers so as not to lose one of the 10 at-large bids. The same can be said for other likely tournament locks like Denver, Wisconsin and probables such as St. Cloud State and New Hampshire. The Irish want as few upsets by teams like Boston University or Minnesota – teams that are currently behind the Irish in the Pairwise to increase their chances of getting in.

While it doesn’t seem likely as of now that the Irish get into the Tournament, things will change over the next several weeks. As of now, Miami is on pace to get a the #1 seed in Ft. Wayne as long as they are not matched with the Irish. So, while it would be good for the CCHA to get Notre Dame into the dance, I’d probably like the Irish to stay home to ensure that Miami would play in Ft. Wayne, and have a great shot at a big crowd.

The Polls
Miami regained their perch atop all three college hockey polls this week as voters for INCH, USCHO and USA Today all ranked Miami as the #1 team in the nation following their tie and win at Alaska coupled with Denver’s tie and loss at Wisconsin. Speaking of Wisconsin, they are the new #2 team and are playing as well as anyone in the nation. The Badgers check in at #3 in the Pairwise rankings.

Teams Under Consideration (TUC)
As I wrote on Sunday, Miami has played 26 games this year with 18 coming against current TUC’s. The RedHawks are 11-2-5 against current TUC’s, but keep in mind this will ebb and flow as teams move in and out of the Top 25. Here’s a look at the teams that Miami has faced, record against and current Pairwise rank.

Bemidji State – Rank: tied for 3rd – Result: (0-1)
St. Cloud State – Rank: tied for 5th – Result (2-0)
New Hampshire – Rank: 7 – Result (1-0-1)
Ferris State – Rank: tied for 8th – Result (2-0-2)
North Dakota – Rank: tied for 10th – Result (0-0-1)
Michigan State – Rank: 13 – Result (1-1)
Michigan – Rank: tied for 17th – Result (2-0)
Alaska – Rank: 20 – Result: (1-0-1)
Notre Dame – Rank: tied for 22nd – Result: (2-0)

At present, Miami has just one series remaining against current TUC’s and that comes up in two weeks against Lake Superior State in Oxford. To demonstrate how these rankings can change, Norrthern Michigan fell out of the Top 25, a team that Miami is 2-0 against meaning it bodes well for the RedHawks if they can get back in by the end of the season. According to the KRACH rankings, a sophisticated computer model, Miami has played the 8th most difficult schedule in the nation.

Jeff Jackson
Am I the only one that’s tired of Jackson’s whining? The Notre Dame coach has complained incessantly about the injuries, specifically concussions, his team has sustained throughout the normal course of the season. Naturally, these injuries are to no fault of his squad, but rather, completely caused by the opposition. Clearly, a concussion is a serious injury and no one wants to see young men encounter brain injuries that might threaten the rest of their normal lives, but at some point, there is a common denominator.

Jackson first started on the “it’s not fair” warpath following the early December series with Miami when he essentially suggested the RedHawks were head hunting. Jackson said he thought several hits from Miami players were “high, dirty hits” that delivered concussions to both Eric Ringel and Ian Cole. In fact, Jackson said the injuries were “…direct results from high hits that weren’t called.” By the way, Jeff, if you’re going to allow Kyle Palmieri and other Irish players to run Cody Reichard at least three times (Reichard even got so tired of it, he drew a retaliation penalty), then you have to expect some retribution for those actions. No one wants to see someone injured, but Notre Dame has to stand up and take some responsibility for the situation.

Of course suggesting there were illegal hits that “weren’t called” immediately weakens his argument. Looking back at the Friday box score, I recall that Tommy Wingels was given a five-minute major penalty for checking from behind on a hit where the Notre Dame player looked over his shoulder, clearly saw Wingels coming, and turned his back to the Miami captain just before impact. That is, the Irish player could have prevented the hit, but instead chose to place himself in a vulnerable position. This is important to consider because I firmly believe we are teaching many of our young players to use their body to shield the puck from the opponent, but in doing so are, at times, placing the player in jeopardy. Further, there was a Notre Dame player who later checked a RedHawk from behind that was only assessed a two-minute minor, and frankly, that hit looked much more dangerous.

So, now we move in to the realm of judgment. And, that’s really a big part of this. The player about to deliver the big hit, has just microseconds to decide how and where to strike the opponent. The player being hit has to decide whether to turn into, or away from, the attacking player. And, the ref, coaches and fans must debate whether the hit was clean or not. It’s extremely subjective, but I fear Coach Jackson is looking at this issue through “Irish-colored glasses.”

At least Jackson’s rant against Miami was relatively short-lived because while he then complained about losing defensemen and having to play some sort of “torpedo” formation against Michigan, the Irish would lose additional players to injury in the coming weeks.

For instance, in the Ferris State series a couple weekends ago, the Irish lost Billy Maday (concussion, shoulder) and Teddy Ruth to injuries due to what Jackson termed “blatant head blows” and that the hit to Ruth “could have been life-threatening.”

Step away from the ledge, Jeff.

And, in last weekend’s series against Lake Superior State, all hell broke loose with the Lakers losing players to hits and the Irish losing more players to injury. This time Ian Cole was knocked out of the game with, apparently, another concussion leading Jackson to go off yet again.

“That’s the seventh concussion for our team this year, and I’m starting to get really tired of the high hits and checks from behind. It might come across as whining since we’re not having a great season, but it’s having a direct impact on my players’ futures and their lives.”

“We have someone like Eric Ringel, who is still dealing with post-concussion syndrome and I don’t know if he’ll ever play hockey again. If we don’t do something soon about these things in all levels of hockey, something bad is going to happen. But for one team to have seven concussions in a season, it’s outrageous.” USCHO

Again, Jeff, step off the ledge. Unless you’re a doctor, you shouldn’t make giant leaps about a player’s future when you clearly don’t have enough information for such a claim. Frankly, I”m sure that’s the last thing Ringel wants to hear. Jackson has created such a stir that USCHO.com’s CCHA beat writer, Paula Weston, took up the topic in her article prior to last weekend’s games. Her argument doesn’t make much sense, but that’s a typical result of reading her column.

At the end of the day there is a common denominator here – Notre Dame – but this whole thing is so subjective. Is it something that Jackson is teaching or not teaching his guys about playing along the boards? Are they turning away from attacking players (as is my firm belief about the Wingels hit in December) and exposing themselves to injury? Is there something endemic in the make-up of the Irish roster the preconditions them to injury? If it were me, I’d be careful if I were coach Jackson. To make such far-reaching accusations, about roughly half the league now, just sounds like sour grapes. Make your point about the need to address head shots and concussions and move on. Is it about the health of your players or the fact that Notre Dame has, at times, struggled this season?

Defense Wins Championships
Miami leads the nation in team defense allowing just 1.69 goals per game (44 goals in 26 games) which includes two games in which they allowed five goals a piece to New Hampshire and North Dakota. Remove those and the number is just 1.41 goals allowed per game over the other 24 games.

In conference play, Miami has only surrendered 1.17 goals per game (21 goals in 18 games played) and has already set a team record for shutouts in a single season with seven in the first 26 games. CCHA.com

Cody Reichard has four of those shutouts which ties the single-season record held by David Burleigh and Connor Knapp has the other three including Saturday’s 5-0 whitewashing of the Alaska Nanooks in Fairbanks.

While the goaltending has been superb, I would be remiss without mentioning the defense corps solid play. With the size that Miami has on the blueline, they make it tough on opposing forwards that, generally, are in the range of 5’8″ to 6’0″ in college, with exceptions of course. Consider:

– Miami allows just over 23 shots-against per game

– The RedHawks have blocked 327 shots this year or more than 12 per game

– Spinell (6’1″), Schilling (6’2″), Hartman (6’4″) and Weber (6’4″) make quite an intimidating lot back there and LoVerde isn’t afraid to throw the body or block shots (in fact, he leads the team in blocked shots this season)

This unit has been fabulous all season, and if they can stay healthy, will really help keep the pressure off Reichard and Knapp throughout the rest of the year.

>Awards Banquet Recap

>While I wasn’t able to attend the end of season banquet at the Shriver Center last night, I did receive several e-mails from people that did attend, so thanks for those. Here are a few notes from last night’s festivities, including which RedHawks took home which awards:

Blue Line Club Award: Gary Steffes

Rookie of the Year: Connor Knapp and Cody Reichard

Outstanding Offensive Player: Carter Camper

Outstanding Defensive Player: Kevin Roeder

Steve Cady Most Improved Player Award: Brandon Smith

Scholar Athlete Award: Michael Findorff, Bill Loupee, Alex Lacombe, Justin Mercier, Brian Kaufman, Kevin Roeder

Berry Family Outstanding Senior Award: Brian Kaufman

Jim Grant “7th Man” Award: MU Assistant Athletic Director Josh Fenton

Gary DeLonge Most Valuable Player Award: Carter Camper

– A banner raising ceremony looks to be in the works at the beginning of next season to honor the team’s accomplishments and participation in the Frozen Four.

– Former RedHawk defenseman Alec Martinez was said to be in attendance at last night’s banquet.

Thanks again to all who e-mailed with a recap!

>Knapp and Reichard Meet The Media

>Miami head coach Enrico Blasi

On the freshmen goalies
“Our main goal as a team has been to get better every day and you can really see that in this team. They are continuing to grow and they are making some solid adjustment and they are really starting to gain some confidence.”

On the team
“Cody (Reichard) has been great, Connor (Knapp) has been great and they have both executed well. That is the main thing that you have to do whether you are goaltender, a forward or a defenseman is you have to execute on the ice and I think top to bottom we done a good job of that so far.”

Connor Knapp, Freshman goalie
On splitting time with Cody Reichard
“I like it. As a freshman you get to know going into the weekend exactly what your job is and you have to go out and take care of business one night. It is really the fair way to do things as long as we both continue to play well.”

On his freshman year
“I am really starting to gain some confidence in net and I think I’m starting to play better. I feel more relaxed on the ice and I think it shows in the way that I have been playing.”

Cody Reichard, Freshman goalie

On the Notre Dame series
“They are a good team and we knew it was going to be a battle. They got some really good attempts on me and I was able to make some saves and my defensemen were able to stop a couple of really good chances that they had, it was a real team effort on both nights.”

On Alaska
“When I was playing juniors up there I never got to see a game. Most of the time they would have us out of town when they (the Nanooks) were in town. I know they (Alaska) are a good team though and they have some forwards they are really solid up front.”

>Start the Memorizing…

>The 2008-2009 roster has been posted over at the official athletic website. A few notes:

– Justin Vaive will now wear #22, his dad Rick’s number from his days in the NHL

– Andy Miele will wear number 17 from now on.

– Two Miami players will wear their numbers for the first time in the program’s history. Trent Vogelhuber (13) and Connor Knapp (31) are wearing those jersey numbers for the first time.

Here are the new sweater numbers for the incoming freshman and the last Miami player to wear the number:

4- Will Weber (Brad Robbins, 2004-2008)
5- Cameron Schilling (Charley Fetzer, 2004-2008)
6- Chris Wideman (Jon Saunders, 2003-2005)
13- Trent Vogelhuber (First)
23- Alden Hirschfeld (Andy Greene, 2002-2006)
27- Matt Tomassoni (Justin Vaive, 2007-2008)
30- Cody Reichard (Nick Petraglia, 2001-2004)
31- Connor Knapp (First)

Personally, I don’t think number 17, in honor of Brian Savage, should ever be worn again after Miele leaves, especially since it has been…pseudo-retired. As for number 26, I don’t know about it being officially “retired,” but I think that it should be a year or two before it’s worn again. (Similar to what the Reds have done with numbers 11 and 14).