Nights like tonight are 'teh suck'. Over the course of this season, I've seen more goals scored against UAA at the end of and beginning of periods than I ever remember seeing in a single season. 0.2 seconds before the end of the 1st and 32 seconds into the 2nd were the back breakers tonight. Sure ... it was only 3-2 after those goals. But without them, it would doubtless have been a very different game.
I thought all night that the ice looked soft. The puck was bouncing a lot more than usual on the oft renowned excellent Sully ice. No doubt the freon leak played a part in that. Of course, both teams are playing on the same ice so it's not an excuse. But it did affect the flow of the game. There were crazy numbers of turnovers for both squads.
The difference in the outcome though was special teams. The Gophers had 3 power play goals and once again UAA gave up a shorthanded goal. I'm pretty sure the Seawolves lead the nation in that category. Isn't that 12 on the year so far?
The only bright spots I can come up with tonight are that Mickey Spencer and Daniel Naslund both had 3 point nights. Mickey scored two real nice goals showing a great deal of poise on his second. Naslund's game has been progressing real well so far in the 2nd half. He seems to be finding a better groove and is using his size and stickhandling abilities to better effect than earlier in the season. Mickey had a strong game all around on both ends of the ice.
Why did they lose so badly? Jonny O didn't get enough help. There were few blocked shots. Jonny O didn't help himself either. He let two real soft goals in. And the Gophers came up with the puck in more of the little battles. I'm also mystified how the Seawolves could win so many faceoff against DU and Michigan Tech, do a reasonable job against CC and then tonight win seemingly almost none. Ok, "none" is an exaggeration ... the official total was 44 - 28. Let's face it, if you can control the puck on restarts you give yourself at a nice advantage.
I didn't think there was much going on with physical play. I can't remember any hit from a UAA player that I'd add to a highlight reel of hits. That's unusual for a team that usually prides themselves on playing a hard hitting game.
I anticipated tonight's game more anxiously than any game this season. I'm responsible for the depth of my disappointment because of that. Honestly, I go to college hockey for the enjoyment of watching some quality play. A game like tonight though just fucks with my mind. Is it just another Friday nightmare? Well, it is that. Can the guys once again find some resolve and character for tomorrow night? I sure hope so. But you know what? I'm not going to count on it.
I'm going to spend the rest of this season just trying to appreciate the positives. I want to see the guys win but I don't know how much more heartache I can take. Yes, it's depressing for me. I'm sure no Seawolves fan reading this is happy about the outcome. But I take no solace in knowing I'm not the only disappointed fan.
I really don't know what else to add. And if you don't have anything good to say, it's best to say nothing. So nothing more it is.
So anyway ... here's the boxscore. Good luck tomorrow night my 'Wolves. I sure hope for your own sakes that you put a good Saturday night together again and salvage some pride.