Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday mid-morning water cooler

Could it be a more exciting Monday morning? There are a few things to talk about this morning as we set you up for the week ahead. Let's get to it!

First, we must congratulate Amber Holland and Team Saskatchewan for their Scotties Tournament of Hearts win. It came down to the final shot in the 10th end and Holland was left counting one for the victory. It snaps the recent run of success by Jennifer Jones and, by the sounds of things, most are happy with that.

It has been a great year so far for Saskatchewan curling with both men's and women's junior teams winning nationals and now Holland claiming the top prize. Now it will be up to the men's team to complete a clean sweep; no easy task.

I have been feeling very patriotic lately on a number of levels. It seems everywhere you look 'we' are on top or in the right direction. The term 'we' is said with loose lips. Just from my perspective here is why I'm feeling so patriotic:
  • We (Saskatchewan) is dominating the national curling stage
  • We (Canada) have tennis' rising star in Milos Raonic
  • We (Canada) are celebrating the one year anniversary of the "Golden Goal" and are the best in hockey
  • We (Canada) finally have a baseball team (Jays) that have some people excited about their new direction under AA and have entered spring training with some actual hope
  • We (Saskatoon) have the best basketball teams in the country in the Huskies men (3rd in CIS) and women (1st in CIS)
  • We (Saskatoon) have one of the best junior hockey teams in the nation (Saskatoon Blades) and have hopes of a Memorial Cup
  • We (Saskatchewan) boast the most popular and arguably the most successful football team (Riders) for the past few years
And the list goes on. It's a good time to be a sports fan and I'm oozing with pride. I guess the only thing that could make things better is if my Leafs somehow squeak into the playoffs and find some success.

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A surprising move on the Riders front as Omarr Morgan has been released from the team. It comes as a shock as some had thought he would retire as a Rider.

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Are you glued to your tv today? Or is it your computer or cell phone?

Trade deadline day in the NHL and coverage on our national sports networks has become a ritual among hockey fans. It is becoming an event not unlike the Grey Cup or Superbowl where some will even plan to have the day off just so they can sit on the couch infront of the tube for an indefinite period of time.

If this is what you're up to, what network are you watching? I've got it on TSN but occasionally flip to Sportsnet. Word is CBC has some deadline coverage and it's airing on Bold but sadly I don't subscribe to that channel so I do not know. Either way it's good fun but if there aren't a few more deals they may need to cut back some in the future.

I think they said there were something like 31 deadline day deals last year but this year there was plenty of action in the weeks leading up to today. If this trend continues, deadline day coverage may not be needed for as long in the future.

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The Huskies men's hockey team clinched a playoff spot over the weekend in Winnipeg and will now travel to Calgary this weekend for first round Canada West playoff action. Meanwhile, the Alberta Golden Bears will host the Manitoba Bisons who slid into the playoffs by the skin of their teeth with Lethbridge hot on their tails.

Entering the final night of the regular season (Saturday night), Manitoba had a one point lead over the Pronghorns with each playing their final games that night. A Huskies win combined with Calgary loss would give Huskies second place and the Pronghorns fourth. As it turns out, the Bisons come away with a win against the Huskies to clinch the final playoff spot. Likely in the dark about the previous result, the Pronghorns were leaving it all on the ice as they beat Calgary in their final game.

How heartbreaking must it have been for the Pronghorns to enter the dressing room following that win only to learn that the Bisons had won and erased any hope of the playoffs?

That's hockey but good on the Pronghorns on taking it right down to the final day of the season. They will be a team to watch over the next few years.

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Who will be the next coach of the Estevan Bruins? http://www.sjhl.ca/news_item.aspx?news_id=2008

The team is taking applications and the speculation will begin soon as to who could step into that role and create a successful on-ice product.

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GX94's Craig Stein put together a solid poll of broadcasters in the SJHL and the results are up on his blog which is linked on the left hand side of this page. It's a must read.

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Two movie reviews from the past week:

- 'Just Go With It' featuring Jennifer Anniston and Adam Sandler receives two thumbs up from me. I thought it was pretty good and had me laughing out loud on more than one occasion.

- 'Gnomeo and Juliette'. I hate to say it but I was sawing logs through most of this flick. Seriously, I was snoring and had to get nudged. Now, not to say that it was a bad show or anything, it may have had to do with me staying up until 3am the night before but I honestly can't offer much of a review. I did like what I saw and it has me wanting to back and finish it, but after $10 I might way until it hits the Rainbow.

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Good story in this morning's Star Phoenix about 29-year-old Brian Guebert and his quest to make Canada's first national senior team. Guebert is a veteran of the Hilltops, Huskies and the CFL and has a winning pedigree. Brian Towress is one of the coaches on this team and you can be sure he'll make a case for the former Huskie to be on the squad.

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Ok, that's all for this morning. Enjoy the week and the rest of trade deadline day.

dd

Sunday, February 27, 2011

SK dominates Canadian curling

TSN.ca ALERT: Saskatchewan's Amber Holland defeats Jennifer Jones and Team Canada 8-7 to win the Scotties Tournament of Hearts.
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless handheld

Friday, February 25, 2011

Huskies @ Bisons

Saskatchewan Huskies @ Manitoba Bisons
Friday, February 25, 7:00pm CT
Saturday, February 26, 7:00pm CT
Winnipeg, MB

Saskatchewan and Manitoba have met five times this season, the first being at a tournament in Regina where the Bisons won 4-2. On Oct. 23-24 the Bisons visited the bridge city and took the first game 2-0 while the Huskies came out on top 4-3 in overtime a night later.

Fast forward to January 14-15 when the Bisons were in Saskatoon again. As was the case in the previous meeting, the Bisons took the Friday contest this time erasing a three goal Huskies lead and winning by a score of 5-3. The Huskies would bounce back the next night for a 5-2 victory.

The two clubs will be scoreboard watching this weekend as neither team has clinched a playoff berth in Canada West. Both the Bisons and the Huskies control their own destiny but I'm sure a little help wouldn't hurt. The Huskies trail the Calgary Dinos by two points in the race for second place while the Bisons only lead Lethbridge by a single point for the final playoff spot in Canada West.

The Huskies have lost three straight coming off a weekend where they were swept clean by the Lethbridge Pronghorns. The Bisons were also swept last weekend but managed two points as both games were decided in extra time.

For updates on the fly throughout the weekend be sure to check back and follow me on twitter at twitter.com/darrendupont.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Breaking down the Canada West playoff picture


As promised here is a little look inside the Canada West men's hockey playoff picture. Over the next few lines we will discuss all the different possible outcomes when dealing with the Canada West playoff picture and what could happen over the weekend.

Here are the standings going into the weekend:

Rank/Team/Points/(Games Remaining)

1. Alberta 39pts (2)
2. Calgary 34pts (2)
3. Saskatchewan 32pts (2)
4. Manitoba 30pts (2)
5. Lethbridge 29pts (2)
6. UBC 25pts (2)

Alberta has clinched first place in the conference and will play UBC who is mathematically eliminated from playoff contention. We won't talk about that weekend series.

The Huskies are in Winnipeg taking on the Bisons for a pair of games this weekend while Calgary will tangle with the Lethbridge Pronghorns. The Dinos have already booked their ticket to the post season but that doesn't mean they'll be on cruse control. The team still has home ice advantage to play for. For Calgary, the worst possible spot they could finish in would be third place as they hold the tie breaker over Manitoba.

Here are the possibilities that could take place over the weekend:

For Calgary to clinch second place: The Dinos need three points to clinch home ice for round one of the playoffs. With the magic number being three that means that any number of Dino's points combined with the number of points the Huskies fail to pick up in Manitoba need to add up to three for the Dinos to clinch second.

Make sense? Here's an example: Dinos pick up a single point in a regulation loss and a shootout loss while Huskies gain two points for a regulation win and a regulation loss in Manitoba. Dinos 1 points + SK 2 points (4 point possible weekend - 2 points actually earned) = 3 points and Dinos clinch second. My math is fool proof!

For Saskatchewan to claim second place: This formula is slightly different but close to the same. For the Huskies to claim home ice in the playoffs their magic number is two. This time that magic number means that the Huskies points earned in Manitoba minus the Dinos points earned against Lethbridge needs to equal two or more for the Huskies to earn second. For example: Huskies sweep Manitoba and Dinos split with Lethbridge. 4 Huskies points - 2 Dinos points = 2 and SK claims second.

The Huskies own the tiebreaker with Calgary but not with Lethbridge. Currently the Huskies do not have the tiebreaker with Manitoba as the Bisons have picked up one single point more than Saskatchewan in their season series thus far.

Now that we have dealt with the two possible options for second place let's move onto third.

For Calgary to finish third: The only way that Calgary finishes in third place is if Saskatchewan finishes in second and we already mentioned how that can happen.

Saskatchewan finishes third and Manitoba fourth if: Manitoba points over the weekend subtract SK points earned over the weekend is less than or equal to one and Lethbridge earns less than or equal to one point more than Manitoba earns. Confused?

Example: Manitoba win in regulation and loses in ot. MB gains 3 points subtract Huskies 2 points earned equals 1 point while Lethbridge earns two points over weekend from Calgary with a split.

MB PTS - SK PTS = X where X must be > or = to 1 AND Leth PTS - MB PTS =Y where Y is < or =" to">

Saskatchewan finishes fourth

Ok how about Saskatchewan finishes third and Lethbridge finishes fourth: IF AND ONLY IF Lethbridge points earned over weekend subtract Manitoba points earned over weekend is greater than or equal to 2.

Leth PTS - MB PTS > or = to 2.

Manitoba finishes third and Saskatchewan fourth if: this happens if Manitoba pick up two wins over Saskatchewan regardless of overtime or shootout and Lethbridge points earned this weekend subtract SK points earned is less than or equal to 2.

Saskatchewan misses the playoffs if: For this to happen Manitoba would finish third and Lethbridge fourth. For this to happen Manitoba NEEDS two wins over Saskatchewan regardless of overtime or shootouts and Lethbridge points earned against Calgary subtract SK points earned in Manitoba must be greater than or equal to 3.

Clear as mud?

I think that is all the different scenarios that could play out but I expect to hear from you if I've made a mistake or something is not clear. Now, print this out and keep it by your side as you follow all the different games on your blackberry or i pad. Remember, I'll be tweeting over at my account twitter.com/darrendupont throughout the weekend with results and notes as the playoff picture unfolds.

The Huskies will be aiming for 2nd or 3rd but nothing is guaranteed and this is a very important weekend. A preview of the Saskatchewan/Manitoba series is coming tomorrow.

SJHL Survivor Series

(courtesy SJHL.ca)

Sherwood Conference Survivor Series Breakdown

MELVILLE MILLIONAIRES VS ESTEVAN BRUINS

SCHEDULE

Game 1- @ Estevan Fri Feb 25 730 pm

Game 2-@ Melville Sat Feb 26 730 pm

Game 3-@ Estevan Mon Feb 28 730 pm

Game 4-@ Melville Tues March 1 730 pm ***

Game 5-@ Estevan Thurs March 3 730 pm ***

STANDINGS

Melville 24-30-1-3 – 52 pts (5th in Sherwood)

Estevan 29-23-4-2 – 64 pts (4th in Sherwood)

HOME-AWAY

Melville 15-12-1-1 (home) 9-18-0-2 (road)

Estevan 16-8-3-1 (home) 13-15-1-1 (road)

POWER PLAY

Melville 53/284 =18.7 % (10th in SJHL) 11 SHGA

Estevan 52/263= 19.8 % (7th in SJHL) 6 SHGA

PENALTY KILL

Melville 76.6 % (10th in SJHL) --allowed 64 PPG, scored 11 SHG

Estevan 77.5 % (9th in SJHL) –allowed 62 PPG, scored 6 SHG

HEAD TO HEAD

Estevan 6-1

Melville 1-4-0-2

TOP SCORERS (year)

Melville- Lucas Froese 22-21-43

Estevan-Jonathan Ceci 26-43-69

TOP SCORERS (HEAD TO HEAD)

Melville-Michael Desjarlais, Roger Tagoona 6 pts each

Estevan-Ryan Andersen 11 pts


Bauer Conference Survivor Series Breakdown

SCHEDULE

Game 1- @ Battlefords Fri Feb 25 730 pm

Game 2-@ Battlefords Sat Feb 26 730 pm

Game 3-@ Flin Flon Mon Feb 28 730 pm

Game 4-@ Flin Flon Tues March 1 730 pm ***if necessary

Game 5-@ Battlefords Thurs March 3 730 pm ***if necessary

STANDINGS

Flin Flon 25-31-2-0 – 52 pts (5th in Bauer)

Battlefords 26-29-2-1- 55 pts (4th in Bauer)

HOME-AWAY

Flin Flon 15-13-1-0(home) 10-18-1-0 (road)

Battlefords 15-12-1-1 (home) 11-17-1-0 (road)

POWER PLAY

Flin Flon 58/305 =19 % (9th in SJHL) 14 SHG

Battlefords 61/291= 21 % (5th in SJHL) 7 SHGA

PENALTY KILL

Flin Flon 77.8 % (8th in SJHL) --allowed 62 PPG, scored 3 SHG

Battlefords 74.0% (12th in SJHL) –allowed 73 PPG, scored 12 SHG

HEAD TO HEAD

Flin Flon 3-3

Battlefords 3-3

TOP SCORERS (year)

Flin Flon- Ryan Fox 27-41-68

Battlefords-Blake Tatchell 26-48-74

TOP SCORERS (HEAD TO HEAD)

Flin Flon – Andrew Johnston 11 pts

Battlefords – Blake Tatchell 12 pts

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Match play golf

I love match-play.

I'm talking about match-play golf. I love playing match-play and I love watching match-play golf. With that, the accenture Match Play Championship begins today and I'm glued to the golf channel.

Every year I fill out my NCAA March Madness bracket and, while I'll do that again, this year I'm filling out my Match-Play bracket.

Here's a link to the tournament bracket. http://www.pgatour.com/leaderboards/current/r470/

I'll just post my final four in each of the four brackets:

In the Bobby Jones bracket:

-Westwood
-Molinari
-Stricker
-Donald

In the Ben Hogan bracket:

-Fowler
-Kuchar
-McDowell
-Poulter

In the Gary Player bracket:

-Kaymer
-Mahan
-McIlroy
-Jimenez

And in the Sam Snead Bracket:

-Woods
-Watson
-Casey
-Holmes

My final four consists of Kaymer, Woods, Donald and Fowler with Martin Kaymer winning the event. So expect it to be the complete oposite! I'll update later this week or on Monday morning before the final.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

BlackBerry CIS Top 10: Huskies fall after being swept




CIS MEN’S HOCKEY TOP 10 (#15)

Voting is based on a 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 basis, with a 1st place vote worth 10 points. The CIS Men’s Ice Hockey Top Ten Committee is made up of media members from across Canada.

(regular season record) / votes (first-place votes) / (previous rankings)

1. UNB (23-5-0) / 179 pts (17) / (1)
2. McGill (24-2-2 / 2-0 playoffs) / 152 (1) / (2)
3. Alberta (18-5-3) / 141 / (3)
4. Saint Mary’s (18-9-1) / 127 / (4)
5. Western Ontario (20-3-5 / 2-0 playoffs) / 96 / (6)
6. St. Francis Xavier (17-10-1 / 2-0 playoffs) / 87 / (7)
7. Calgary (16-8-2) / 78 / (8)
8. Saskatchewan (16-10-0) / 56 / (5)
9. UQTR (19-8-1 / 2-1 playoffs) / 31/ (9)
10. Carleton (18-8-2 / 2-1 playoffs) / 17 / (10)

Other teams receiving votes: Acadia (14), Manitoba (4), UPEI (2), Waterloo (2), Wilfrid Laurier (2), Guelph (1), Nipissing (1).

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Monday morning water cooler


Due to Family Day on Monday, we bring you a special Tuesday edition of the water cooler. This week we focus mainly on Huskies hockey but we'll also touch on the junior hockey playoff pictures in the province as well as some other odds and ends. Grab your morning joe and I hope you enjoy.

I'd like to start the column off with a quote from the Greek Stoic philosopher Epictetus if I could.

"The greater the difficulty, the more glory in surmounting it. Skillful pilots gain their reputation from storms and tempests."

Sometimes it's the way we handle adversity that truly determines if we are great or capable of being great. Over the next couple of weeks we will find out what the Huskies men's hockey team is made of.

As I mentioned in my Sunday post, the Huskies came up with a dud on the weekend in Lethbridge and now face an uphill battle to regain the momentum they once had as playoffs approach. The team has lost its last three games and have fallen from (what once was thought to be a fairly comfortable lead in) second to third and there is no guarantee that Saskatchewan will even make the playoffs.

I'm not going to take too much time this morning talking about the match-up with Manitoba; I'll devote an entire post to it later in the week. We know it's important for both teams and if the Huskies have any thought of a home playoff date, a sweep is a must in my opinion.

I'll try to catch up with Huskies' coach Dave Adolph and get you that preview in the next couple of days. In the meantime I will also devote an entire post, likely tomorrow, to the different scenarios that could play out this weekend and the effects of each.

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I am writing this post over a bowl of Cheerios and a few pieces of fruit this morning fresh off thirty minutes of yoga.

Yep, yoga.

I've been doing yoga daily for about a week now and already I can tell you that my posture, flexibility, and overall feeling has improved 100%. Needless to say I won't be stopping anytime soon.

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The Saskatchewan Huskies women's hockey team had their season come to an end over the weekend in Edmonton. The Huskies were handed losses of 3-0 and 1-0 to be swept away by the Alberta Pandas in first round Canada West playoffs.

Looking ahead, the Huskies are eligible to return leading scorers Cara Wooster and Breanne George next season and should be contenders in 2011/2012.

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Saskatchewan's Amber Holland is off to a perfect start at the Scotties Tournament of Hearts in Charlottetown PEI. Holland's rink is 5-0 and tied atop the Scotties standings with Ontario. The two teams meet today at 12:30pm Saskatchewan time in a battle for first place. Many, including myself, will be glued to TSN for this one.

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The Heritage Classic is in the books for another year and again, the NHL can sit back and count its cash after another successful event. The game left something to be desired but the weekend seemed like a total hit. The WHL outdoor game a day later was a different story. The weather was a little milder and the game was exciting. Sportsnet did a bang on job with the national broadcast and I was impressed. It should be the goal of the CHL to piggy back off the NHL with this event whenever possible.

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One last note about the game. I loved the Flames jerseys. It may not be the popular opinion but it's one I'd buy if I were a Flames fan.

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A note from the fine folks at the CIS Blog: "To all those people who complained about Wickenheiser playing CIS: the Dinos didn't even win a playoff game with her."

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The Saskatoon Blades will welcome the Brandon Wheat Kings to the CUC for a pair of games this week. The Blades play the Wheaties on Wednesday and Friday and youth tickets are on for just $5! Great opportunity to take the kids.

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The SJHL regular season wraps up today with three games on the schedule. Unfortunately, there is nothing to play for on the last day of the regular season other than pride and momentum.

The playoff picture is set and in the Sherwood Conference the Melville Millionaires claimed the final playoff spot edging out Notre Dame and will play Estevan in the survivor series. The winner will play the Yorkton Terriers in the conference semis while Kindersley will play Weyburn in the other.

In the Bauer conference the Flin Flon Bombers and Battlefords North Stars play in the survivor series with the winner taking on La Ronge while Humboldt will play Melfort in the other semi.

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The Regina Pats are on the verge of missing the playoffs for the third consecutive season but they way they played in Calgary you wouldn't know it. The team is still five points out of the final playoff spot and, while they aren't mathematically eliminated, the road is a tough one. They haven't done themselves any favors in meaningful games, especially losing recently to Prince Albert.

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This week is a short one but there is no shortage of action. Enjoy the week!

dd

Sunday blogging


It's a rare Sunday entry but I feel I need to check in. I was incommunicado yesterday and felt I needed to update you on a few things that took place yesterday.

It wasn't a good Saturday for the Huskies hockey teams and for that matter it wasn't a very good weekend. In fact, it is one that both teams would rather forget.

Let's start with the women's team.

They were in Alberta for first round playoffs with the Pandas with a trip to nationals on the line. Friday saw them lose 3-0 to go down one game and yesterday the Pandas wrapped up the series with a 1-0 victory over the Huskies to take the series in two games.

Going out in two straight and not scoring a goal is a tough way for the Huskies to go out but the season should not be considered a failure. Yes, the team was capable of beating Alberta but they have taken great strides toward earning a birth at the national tournament and next year looks bright indeed.

Now onto the men.

The team entered the weekend sitting pretty in second place with just four games left in the season and on the road in Lethbridge. Well, Friday night the Huskies lose 5-3 and Alberta wins and so does Calgary. Even better the Alberta/Manitoba game goes to a shootout and the Bisons pick up a point.

Fast forward to the very next night and the Huskies are doubled up by the Pronghorns 4-2 and what do you know? Calgary and Alberta both win and guess what? The Alberta/Manitoba game goes to overtime giving the Bisons a point.

Ouch!

So, here's what we know following the weekend and what lies ahead for the Huskies:
  • Alberta has clinched first place in Canada West
  • Calgary has overtaken Saskatchewan for second with 34 points
  • Saskatchewan sits in third place with 32 points and, if the season were to end today, would travel to Calgary for round one of Canada West playoffs
  • Manitoba has climbed to within two points of Saskatchewan in the chase for third place
  • Lethbridge has kept their playoff hopes alive and now trail Manitoba by just a single point in the race for fourth
How huge was it for Lethbridge to sweep Saskatchewan? The Pronghorns could somehow earn a playoff berth and that would be an incredible feat for them. Good for them. The Horns would be sitting in fourth spot if it wasn't for Manitoba taking Alberta to overtime both nights and earning two points over the weekend.

It is possible that Saskatchewan could miss the playoffs. The Huskies have lost three straight after being the best team out of the gate in 2011. It is possible that the four teams in the Canada West playoffs could be Alberta, Calgary, Manitoba and Lethbridge.

Here is how some of the different scenarios could play out: (and I'll devote an entire post to this later in the week once I figure out all the different possibilities)

-Calgary will play Lethbridge and Saskatchewan will be in Manitoba this coming weekend.

-If the Huskies sweep the Bisons and Lethbridge can manage a regulation win against Calgary then Saskatchewan would finish second with Calgary third and Lethbridge fourth.

-If the Bisons sweep the Huskies and Lethbridge can sweep Calgary then Saskatchewan would finish fifth.

Saskatchewan needs at least two points (to force a tie breaker) and possibly a sweep to earn second place in Canada West and home ice in round one of the playoffs and even that might not be enough. Saskatchewan needed at least two points out of this weekend and they got zero. All of a sudden the road to the Cavendish Cup is looking a lot less pretty.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Pandas strike first

Edmonton, AB -- The University of Alberta Pandas drew first blood in their best-of-three Canada West women's hockey semi-final series with the University of Saskatchewan Huskies winning 3-0 on home ice Friday afternoon.

The Pandas opened the scoring in the first period. On the power play Karla Bourke put the puck past Huskies' goaltender Mackenzie Rizos at the 2:53 mark and Alberta led 1-0 after one period of play. The Pandas added to their lead early in the second - just 18 seconds in - when Leah Copeland found the back of the net and the Pandas took a 2-0 lead into the third.

The Pandas would add one more in the third when Katie Borbely put one home at the 13:17 mark to make the final 3-0 Alberta.

Kanesa Shwetz got the start in goal for the Pandas recording the shutout but the Huskies managed just 13 shots on goal compared to the Pandas' 33. Mackenzie Rizos was in goal for Saskatchewan.

The Huskies power play couldn't muster much in the form of opportunities going 0 for 8 while the Pandas' power play clicked twice on seven opportunities.

The two teams get back on the ice in Edmonton for game two of the series Saturday afternoon at 3:00pm Saskatchewan time.

Done deal

TSN.ca ALERT: Maple Leafs trade Tomas Kaberle to Bruins for Joe Colborne, Boston's 1st round pick and a conditional draft pick
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless handheld

Huskies open playoffs in Edmonton


Edmonton, AB -- The University of Saskatchewan Huskies women's hockey team is on the road today to open their Canada West semi-final playoff series with the Alberta Pandas. There is more on the line in this series than a trip to the Canada West championship series as the winner of the series will automatically receive a birth into the CIS national tournament as Canada West will have two representatives.

The Huskies finished the regular season with a 15-8-1 record which was good for fourth place in the conference and the final playoff position. They'll play the top seeded Pandas who went 17-4-3 during the season to clinch home ice advantage.

The two teams met a total of five times during the season, including once over the Christmas break at a tournament in Manitoba in which the Pandas won 4-1. The Pandas also won the first three meetings - all one goal games - with scores of 2-1, 3-2, and, most recently, 3-2 on Feb. 11. One night later the Huskies came out on top on Feb. 12 winning 1-0 in the final game of the regular season. The win snapped the Pandas nine-game winning streak as the two teams head to playoffs.

This series may come down to goaltending and the Huskies and Pandas sport some of the best goalies in Canada West.

Netminders Michala Jeffries and Kanesa Shwetz split time between the pipes for Alberta and, statistically speaking, are the top two goaltenders in Canada West. Jeffries went 8-2 with a 1.11 GAA, a sparkling .941 sv %, and a conference leading five shutouts while Shwetz went 8-5 with a 1.44 GAA, a .924 sv % and two shutouts.

Mackenzie Rizos handled the bulk of the workload for Saskatchewan this season going 13-8 with a 1.98 GAA, a .930 sv % and two shutouts.

Offensively, the Huskies have plenty of fire power and they'll need it all if they want to advance beyond Alberta. The Huskies boast two of the top three scorers in Canada West in Breanne George and Cara Wooster. Wooster finished tied for the league lead in points with 40 (14 g, 26 a) while George finished third with 30 points (15 g, 15 a). Third on the Huskies and eighth in Canada West scoring is Julie Paetsch who finished with 23 points (9 g, 14 a).

The Pandas offensive production was spread out a little more than Saskatchewan's with five players in the top 20 in Canada West lead by Sarah Hilworth who was fourth with 26 points (13 g, 13 a). Leah Copeland (7th with 24 points (11 g, 13 a)), Melody Howard (11th with 19 points (9 g, 10 a)), Karla Bourke (13th with 18 points (10 g, 8 a)), and Katie Stewart (20th with 16 points (6 g, 10 a)) round out the leading offensive weapons for the Pandas.

The series is a best of three beginning today in Edmonton with games two and three (if necessary) on Saturday and Sunday respectively. All three games will be played in Alberta and are scheduled to start at 3:00pm Saskatchewan time.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Three Huskies to attend CFL e-camp


Three Huskies have been invited to attend the 2011 Canadian Football League Evaluation Camp which is set to take place in Toronto March 4 to 6.

Receivers Jade Etienne and Braeden George along with linebacker Peter Thiel have been invited to take part in the camp early next month. Etienne is believed to be a top 15 pick in the upcoming CFL draft.

More details and the full release including the entire camp roster can be found here: http://huskies.usask.ca/news/2011/February/2011-02-17-cfl/index.php

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Schenn the hero in OT


(game summary courtesy SaskatoonBlades.com)

The Blades continue to lead the Blades vs. Tigers season series with a perfect 3-0 record after tonight’s overtime win.

In the first period Scott McKay opened up the scoring with his second goal of the season and the only goal of the period.

In the second frame the Blades scored three goals within 2 minutes and 10 seconds, starting at the 10:37 mark of the period. Darian Dziurzynski took a tough hit from Kale Kessy, knocking his helmet off and sending him back to the bench winded. He came back with vengeance and scored the first Blades goal, his 27th of the season, to start the second period trend. Connor Cox snatched a loose puck by Tyler Bunz’s net and slid it in to make it 2-1 and only 21 seconds later Curtis Hamilton put one home from the left circle to end the period 3-1.

The Tigers battled back in the third period, Emerson Etem scored on the powerplay to reduce the home team lead. Jake Trask also scored on the powerplay to stretch his point streak to 9 games; he has 11 goals and 6 assists within the stretch. With 3:33 left on the clock The Hat found themselves on a two man advantage which Thomas Carr capitalized on and brought the team within one point of the tie. Emerson Etem closed the gap completely with his 32nd of the season and sent the game into overtime.

Brayden Schenn put a quick end to the overtime decision with the game winning goal amongst a scramble in front of the Tigers net, his second OT game winner of the season. A 5-4 victory for the Blades and Steven Stanford who made 26 saves.

The Blades and Tigers wrap up their season series on Sunday night in Medicine Hat. The next Blades home game is one week away when they play the Brandon Wheat Kings, at 7:05 in the Credit Union Centre.

KOOK NAMED CHAIRPERSON OF UNIVERSITY CUP COMMITTEE

(From Huskies.usask.ca)

Huskie Athletics is pleased to announce Grant Kook as the chairperson for the CIS University Cup Men’s Hockey Championship hosted by the University of Saskatchewan in 2013 & 2014.

Voted as one of Saskatchewan’s Men of Influence by the Saskatchewan Business Magazine in 2008, Kook is the founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of well-known Golden Opportunities Fund. He is also the President and CEO of the fund manager, Westcap Mgt. Ltd., which manages in excess of $250 million directed at Saskatchewan growth opportunities. Kook has also been the President and CEO of the Ramada Hotels since 1992 and the Chairman of the Board for SaskTel since 2008.

“Grant was an excellent choice for chairperson for this event,” said Basil Hughton, athletic director. “With his experience and connections to our community, Grant will be able to make sure the University Cup is a success once again in Saskatoon. We are extremely happy to be able to work with him.”

The Championships will run March 21-24, 2013 and March 20-23, 2014. All games will be played at the Credit Union Centre. Huskie Athletics hosted the University Cup from 1998 to 2000 with the event a huge success in Saskatoon attracting the three highest single-tournament attendances in University Cup history with 37,121 spectators over seven games in 1998, 37,184 fans in 1999 and a single-year record of 40,956 in 2000.

Not only has Kook made his mark in the province for his career achievements, but as a volunteer. His community involvement includes Voluntary Chair of the Children’s Hospital Foundation of Saskatchewan, Vice President of Sponsorship for the 2010 World Junior Championship, Executive Committee Member of the Mike Weir Miracle Golf Drive for Kids, Sponsorship Chair for the 2006 Vanier Cup, Business & Sponsorship Chair for the Canadian 2004 Brier, Director of the 2012 Tim Hortons Brier and a Board Member of the new Saskatchewan Hockey Hall of Fame.

“With the Huskie hockey team having competed in nine out of the last 12 national tournaments and a city still excited about the sport thanks to a successful 2010 World Junior Championship, I could not think of a better time to bring the University Cup back to Saskatoon,” said Kook. “The hockey played at the University level is some of the best you will see, I am confident that we will draw record crowds once again at this event. I am very pleased and humbled to have been asked to be a part of the event and to have a hand in carrying on the storied Huskie hockey tradition.”

Kook, who is the brother of Huskie women’s hockey head coach Steve Kook, will spend the upcoming weeks putting his organizing committee in place.

CHL Top 10: Blades #2

Toronto, ON – The Canadian Hockey League today announced the BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings for week 21 of the 2010-11 season. The weekly rankings of the Canadian Hockey League’s Top 10 teams are selected by a panel of National Hockey League scouts.



BMO CHL MasterCard Top 10 Rankings – Week 21

Rank Team (Record) Last Week # of Weeks Ranked

1 Saint John Sea Dogs (46-5-1-2) 1 18

2 Saskatoon Blades (44-11-0-2) 3 21

3 Mississauga St. Michael's Majors (40-10-0-2) 2 21

4 Montreal Juniors (38-9-4-4)4 15

5 Red Deer Rebels (39-14-2-4) 5 12

6 Quebec Remparts (40-13-1-2) 6 20

7 Niagara IceDogs (36-11-2-4) 7 6

8 Owen Sound Attack (37-15-1-2) 9 13

9 Portland Winterhawks (38-16-0-3) 8 16

10 Ottawa 67's (35-16-1-1) 10 7

Honourable Mention:


Drummondville Voltigeurs (37-14-5-2) - 9

Kootenay Ice (37-17-1-2) - 10

Saginaw Spirit (34-16-3-1) - 17

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Blades win streak snapped

Its late and I'm not by the compute but a full recap is at saskatoonblades.com.
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless handheld

CIS Top 10: Huskies move up

MEN’S HOCKEY
(regular season record) / votes (first-place votes) / (previous rankings)


1. UNB (23-5-0) / 179 (17) / (1)
2. McGill (24-2-2) / 150 (1) / (2)
3. Alberta (16-5-3) / 135 / (3)
4. Saint Mary’s (18-9-1) / 131 / (5)
5. Saskatchewan (16-8-0) / 105 / (6)
6. Western Ontario (20-3-5) / 85 / (4)
7. StFX (17-10-1) / 83 / (7)
8. Calgary (13-8-2) / 46 / (9)
9. UQTR (19-8-1) / 33 / (NR)
10. Carleton (18-8-2) / 19 / (8)

Other teams receiving votes: Acadia (9), Manitoba (8), UPEI (5), Guelph (1), Nipissing (1).

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Monday morning water cooler


Happy Valentines Day from the mmwc to you and yours this morning.

We've got a few notes collected from the past week and some things to keep an eye on in the week ahead so let's get to it.

The weekend was an up and down one for the Huskies mens hockey team. Friday's 2-1 overtime win over Alberta set the stage for Saturday's game with first place up for grabs but it wasn't exactly how the Huskies pictured. Alberta's 4-0 win has them three points ahead of the dogs for top spot in Canada West with each team having just four games remaining.

Head coach Dave Adolph was quick to "fall on the sword" after Saturday's loss. He felt that he didn't do a good enough job preparing his team and that they will be better. Sometimes as a coach you need to take the fall and keep the attention off your team and onto yourself. Let's hope it works.

The attention now shifts to a battle for second place. The Huskies are now just four points up on Calgary and Manitoba. The Dinos have a game in hand (which they use up on Wednesday when they play Lethbridge) and the Bisons have four games remaining (two against the Huskies).

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The Huskies womens hockey team hits the ice in Alberta for their first round playoff series with the Pandas this weekend. The team wrapped up the regular season in Edmonton losing 3-2 Friday night before bouncing back to win 1-0 a night later.

This is very much a series the Huskies could take. They'll be the underdog but may surprise some people. A trip to nationals is on the line as two teams from Canada West will travel east.

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Is this awesome or just crazy?

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Aden Bowman quarterback Drew Burko has committed to the Huskies for the upcoming season. Burko, arguably the top high school quarterback in the country, is a huge land for the Huskies although with family on the coaching staff is it really a surprise?

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There was a Twitter battle on Saturday night between Hockey Night in Canada personalities Scott Oak and Kelly Hrudy. Here's a sample of the shots being fired:

Scott Oake
Because of his fake and bake tan Hrudey shall henceforth be known at The Situation!

Kelly Hrudey
Oake should be on Donald Trumps TV show the Apprentice....He's fired!!!!!

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Good on the CBC for the feature on Weyburn Red Wings coach Dwight McMillan during hockey day in Canada. The only negative is they pronounced GM Ron Rumball's name as Ron TURNbull!

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Keeping with the SJHL for a couple more notes:

- Jamie Fiesel's rant hit number two on Sportscentre's top 10 last week. If you haven't seen it, I suggest you hit up YouTube and see what you're missing. It's pure gold.

- Will Travis Eggum hit 100 points? The talented LaRonge Ice Wolves sniper hit 50 goals earlier this season and now has 97 points. The former Klipper and Saskatoon product has exploded with offense this season up north and deserves all the credit. He's a good kid.

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Ok, name something that gets passed around?

Check this out:

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Who is Milos Raonic? Well, he may be the best thing to ever come out of Canada's tennis program.

The 20-year-old completed a run at the SAP Open in San Jose on Sunday with a win over the No. 1 seed Fernando Verdasco of Spain.

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Here's a note from Steve Simmons on the CFL hall of fame inductees announcement:

"Head of hall of fame confirms 13 person committee did not vote Damon Allen into Canadian Hall. Same people voted John Bonk in though."

It's a head scratcher! Allen should be a slam dunk.

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So, do you have romantic plans for you and your significant other this evening? If I may make a suggestion, I would tell you to head to Tony Roma's and try the Kickin' Shrimp. It's a staple for this blogger.

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The Saskatoon Blades continue to roll ahead at full steam. The team is perfect since acquiring Brayden Schenn and have won 11-straight overall. This could very well be the best team in the nation.

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I've got a few other thoughts but I'll save them for later in the week and for Twitter. Happy Valentine's day!

dd

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Bears 4 Huskies 0


SASKATOON -- Alberta goaltender Kurtis Mucha was the story Saturday night as the Bears blanked the home town Huskies 4-0. Mucha stopped all 34 Saskatchewan shots en route to the shutout.

A jam packed crowd of 617 turned up for the game that saw the Huskies enter just a single point behind Alberta for top spot in Canada West after their win on Friday night.

As was the case on Friday night, the Golden Bears got on the board first, and again, it was a shorthanded goal. Zack Daily opened the scoring with the Huskies on the power play at the 16:35 mark and then just over a minute later Sean Ringrose went upstairs at 17:44 to give Alberta a 2-0 lead after the first period.

The Bears would strike again to take a 3-0 lead when Drew Nichol found the back of the net at the 15:15 mark of the second period. This would spell the end to Ryan Holfeld's night in goal. The first year Huskies netminder allowed three goals on 14 shots and was pulled in favor of David Reekie.

Reekie played well but an Alberta shot that rang off the goal post found the stick of Derek Ryan who put the loose puck home at the 7:40 mark of the third to round out the scoring making the final 4-0 in favor of the Golden Bears.

The Huskies out shot the Bears 34-25. David Reekie stopped 10 of 11 Alberta shots in relief work. The Huskies went 0 for 2 on the power play while the Golden Bears did not receive a power play.

After the game, Huskies head coach Dave Adolph was quick to shoulder the blame.

"I didn't think I did a very good job of preparing my team today," Adolph stated. "I think that's one of the coaches jobs to make sure that, not only is his team prepared to make an adjustment but making sure that we're a step ahead. We've been a step ahead here for the last four or five weeks and I got a little complacent today and it's all on me."

With the loss the Huskies are now three points back of the Golden Bears in the chase for first place in Canada West. Each team has four games remaining. The Huskies play all four on the road starting this weekend when they'll take on Lethbridge Feb. 18 and 19 and then finish the season in Manitoba against the Bisons a week later.

"Our guys will be better, I'll be better prepared and I think that, you know, sometimes you have to fall on your own sword and I wasn't very good today."

Huskies notes: The Huskies hold a four point lead over both Calgary and Manitoba in the race for second place in Canada West. The top two teams at the end of the regular season will host a first round playoff game. The Dinos have five games remaining while the Bisons have four left in the season.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Huskies 2 Bears 1 OT

SASKATOON -- Andrew Bailey's goal 1:47 into the overtime period was the winner as the Saskatchewan Huskies took game one of their weekend series with the Alberta Golden Bears 2-1.

With the overtime win the Huskies move to 16-7-0 and are just a single point behind the Bears for top spot in Canada West.

The game didn't start as planned for the hometown Huskies as it was the Bears getting on the board first. With the Huskies on the power play, Steven DaSilva turned the puck over in the neutral zone and it led to a Chad Klassen short-handed breakaway goal giving Alberta a 1-0 lead just 5:43 into the opening period.

The Huskies would answer back late in the period when Matt Delahey jumped on a loose puck in the slot tieing the game at one at the 13:54 mark of the first and it would remain that way through the end of the third period.

David Reekie made 27 saves for the Huskies while Bears goaltender Kurtis Mucha made 29 saves.

The two teams will reset and get back on the ice tomorrow night at Rutherford Rink with first place in Canada West on the line. Puck-drop is scheduled for 7:00pm.

Huskies game night: vs Alberta


SASKATOON -- The Saskatchewan Huskies (15-7-0) will play host to the Alberta Golden Bears (15-5-2) this weekend in a first place showdown at Rutherford Rink.

This weekend series has been building since shortly into the new year. The Huskies have been hot while the Bears have not and as a result, Saskatchewan has closed the gap between themselves and first place Alberta to just two points. Tonight, they'll have a chance to pull even with the Bears for top spot in Canada West.

The Huskies have been hot out of the gate in 2011 after a so-so 2010 portion of the schedule. The team is 7-1 in the new year and riding a five game winning streak into this weekend's match-up. The Bears, on the other hand, have been mediocre going 6-3-1 including a three game losing streak that allowed the Huskies to move into a position to take over first in the conference.

One reason for the Huskies dominance has been their solid team play. The play of both David Reekie and Ryan Holfeld between the pipes for the hockey dogs has been nothing short of solid. Just take a look at this quick stat pulled from the blog of Alberta student sports writer Evan Daum on the goals for/goals against thus far in 2011:

1. Saskatchewan - 30 goals for, 14 against Net: +16
2. Calgary - 30 goals for, 24 against Net: +6
3. Alberta - 29 goals for, 24 against Net: +5
4. Lethbridge - 26 goals for, 27 against Net: -1
4. Manitoba - 20 goals for, 21 against Net: -1
6. Regina - 13 goals for, 26 against Net: -13
7. UBC - 22 goals for, 38 against Net: -16

You can see that the Huskies have been far and away the best team in 2011. They have considerable momentum heading into this weekend. Add in the fact that two teams from Canada West will head to Fredericton in late March amps up this weekend's importance that much more. Earning first place and avoiding a first round playoff series with Calgary may be huge in determining who earns those coveted two births into the national tournament.

In my opinion and in others too, Saskatchewan and Calgary are the two teams with the best chance to represent Canada West out east and it would be a shame to have them meet in the first round with a birth on the line. Chances are that Calgary will finish the season in third place so it's now up to the Huskies to do their part and get to the top of the conference. They'll need a sweep this weekend to make that happen.

Games go Friday and Saturday night at Rutherford Rink with puck-drop scheduled for 7:00pm both nights. There will be no webcast this weekend as we are pre-empted by both wrestling (Friday) and Basketball (Saturday). I'll be tweeting updates from Rutherford Rink this weekend. Follow along at Twitter.com/darrendupont.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Gold medal winner rejoins Huskies hockey team

Darren Dupont
Sheaf Sports


The women’s Huskies hockey team will be pleased to welcome forward Breanne George back to the line-up this weekend when the team travels to Alberta Feb. 11 and 12. George has missed the team’s past four games while away in Turkey representing Canada in the Winter Universaide.

George, who has scored 29 points including a team leading 14 goals, returns to the Huskies with a gold medal around her neck after helping Canada knock off Finland 4-1 in the championship game Feb. 5.

“Partaking in this international tournament was absolutely amazing and a chance of a lifetime,” explained the fourth-year Huskies forward via email. “I got a chance to meet people from all over the world and play with the best female hockey players in Canada.”

George received an email in late September informing her that she had been selected to represent Canada at the Winter Universaide.

“When I first read through the email I was in complete shock and ended up having to read over it a couple of times to take in all the information,” explained George. “I just felt an overwhelming feeling of excitement, honour and almost a little relieved. I knew I was going to be able to get that opportunity and it made me scared and excited at the same time.”

George took the success she had with the Huskies and turned it into a gold medal performance in Turkey. The talented Huskies sniper tied for the team lead in points with 12, including seven goals throughout the tournament.

“Going into the tournament I wasn’t sure what to expect for playing time,” reflected George. “I knew that it was up to me to make sure I went there and just worked hard and focus on the things that I do best. Every time I stepped onto the ice I wanted to show the coaching staff what I could do. I challenged myself every day and pushed to be the best I could be. I knew that if I did that I would be happy with my play no matter how many points I got.”

The team, made up of Canadian Interuniversity Sport all-stars, finished the tournament with a perfect 7-0 record culminating in the gold medal victory over Finland.

“Nothing can be compared to the feeling of that medal hanging around your neck at the end of it all. All the hard work and dedication pays off when you feel the weight of that success hanging off your neck.”

With just three practices, each lasting an hour, it was a challenge to bring in players from across the country and expect them to gel as a team but George says everyone was focused on the same goal.

“I think the key to our team’s success was the fact that every player knew they were there to win a gold medal. Everything we did, we did to win. We were all on the same page. The coaching staff scheduled time for team activities to get everyone familiar with each other and learn a little about everyone.”

Now the focus shifts back to Saskatoon and the Huskies attempt to earn a birth into the CIS Women’s Hockey Championship. George feels that her experience at the international level can help the Huskies take their game to the next level.

“The biggest thing I can bring back to this team from my experiences in Turkey is the experience of winning. There is truly nothing like it. Sometimes the student-athlete life gets hard and you lose sight on what exactly is important to you. We know we have the potential to make it to nationals and take it.

“We need to recognize that when we play at our best we can defeat even the best teams in our league and that is exactly what we are preparing to do in these next two weeks.”

What they really mean


It's straight out of NHL on TSN host James Duthie's recent book 'The Day I (Almost) Killed Two Gretzkys'; a book highly recommended by this blogger.

Duthie is referring to the term of being "Nuked" in one of his stories. Not sure what he means? Here's the definition right out of the book.
"Nuke - a noun derived from the character Nuke Laloosh, Tim Robbins' strong-armed, dim-witted pitcher in the movie Bull Durham."

He is referring to part of the story where Nuke is taught all the lame cliches that he'd need for interviews in "The Show." Duthie says today it's referred to as "Media Training."

So what does witty TSN host do? He creates a Nuke-English Dictionary and provides some samples in his book. I'll share some with you:

PRE-GAME:
"We can't take this team too lightly."

(TRANSLATION: "They're 2-34. Our mascot might get a triple-double!")

"We're peaking at the right time."

("Most of the guys are right at the end of a steroid cycle.")

"There's no I in Team."

("But there's one in 'Incentive Clause,' so I ain't passing to anybody.")

POST-GAME:
"We just didn't have it tonight."

("We were out clubbing 'till 6 a.m., and man were we hung over.")

There are others and you'll have to pick up a copy of the book to see for yourself.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Blades 6 Warriors 5 OT

SASKATOON --Brayden Schenn netted the game winner on a power play late in the overtime period as the Saskatoon Blades held off the Moose Jaw Warriors 6-5 Wednesday night at Credit Union Centre.

Schenn picked up four points (2g 2a) but was outdone in that department by Moose Jaw's Dylan Hood who picked up five assists. Quinton Howden also had four points including three goals.

The Blades next action is on Friday when they take on the Prince Albert Raiders.

For the full release from SaskatoonBlades.com follow the link: http://bit.ly/hlyk4z

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Top 10 Tuesday

MEN’S HOCKEY
(regular season record) / votes (first-place votes) / (previous rankings)

1. UNB (20-5-0) / 179 pts (17) / (1)
2. McGill (22-2-2) / 142 (1) / (2)
3. Alberta (15-5-2) / 130 / (4)
4. Western Ontario (20-2-4) / 117 / (3)
5. Saint Mary’s (16-9-1) / 111 / (6)
6. Saskatchewan (15-7-0) / 107 / (5)
7. St. Francis Xavier (15-10-1) / 74 / (7)
8. Carleton (17-7-2) / 45 / (NR)
9. Calgary (13-8-2) / 30 / (NR)
10. Acadia (14-8-3) / 21 / (NR)

Other teams receiving votes: UPEI (10), Manitoba (10), Guelph (6), Nipissing (5), Wilfrid Laurier (3).

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I'm not sure how the Huskies fall this week but they'll have a chance to move up with a good showing against Alberta. My thought is the Huskies would hold steady at #5 but that's not the case.

The women's team entered the top 10 and sits at #10.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Monday morning water cooler

SASKATOON -- It's a cold one this morning in the bridge city but don't worry there is sunny skies on the horizon. Guess what? It's supposed to get up towards zero by the weekend. Hang in there.

For your enjoyment here are some notes I've collected over the past week, mostly from the fabulous world of Twitter.

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The dust has settled in Texas and emerging as Super Bowl champions are the Green Bay Packers.

I wasn't extremely excited for this one as I didn't really care who won but I watched and I am of the belief that in order to watch a game of any kind you need to have a rooting interest.

Am I right? Can you actually watch a game (and be genuinely interested) without cheering for one team or another?

So, I took the Steelers, and for a while I thought they were gonna do it. It ended up being a pretty entertaining game. Brian Lee will enjoy this Packer victory for a while.

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The half-time show left a little something to be desired. Yes it was refreshing to know the Black Eyed Peas were actually singing and there were a ton of lights and choreographed moves but that was about it.

It just left you asking yourself: was that it?

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The Saskatchewan Huskies men's hockey team had a very successful weekend sweeping the UBC Thunderbirds. Alberta also put a sweep together against Regina setting up a massive weekend at Rutherford.

Alberta will be in town for a pair of games that will go a long way to determining who finishes first in Canada West. Look for a preview sometime later in the week leading up to the big series.

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Congrats are in order for Mike Linklater and the Huskies men's basketball team for winning 2010 Kinsmen sport athlete and team of the year.

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While I didn't have too much interest in who won the Super Bowl, I was watching the Canadian Jr. Curling championships with interest. Congrats to the Moskowy rink for winning the championship.

Skip Braeden made a great shot with the final stone in the 10th end to win by one. It was good TV.

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Here are some quick notes from the week:

- Apparently, Ron Artest would play in the CFL. Check it out:

- A piece of advice from Wired 96.3 morning host Brandy:

@: "Just cause you're not expecting company doesn't mean you shouldn't mow the lawn"

- Happy Birthday to Don Cherry (Feb. 5).

- Denis Kulyash one ups Zedeno Chara in the KHL skills competition by blasting a record breaking shot of 110.343 mph. WOW!

- Congrats to LaRonge Ice Wolves forward and former Klipper Travis Eggum for scoring his 50th goal of the season this past week. He becomes the first player to hit 50 since 2002/2003.

- How about former Rider QB Graham Harrell? He goes from practice roster to winning a super bowl as Packers 3rd string QB. Not a bad deal.

- Miss the Super Bowl commercials? Check out this link on YouTube: youtube.com/user/adblitz

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That's it for this morning. Have a great week!

dd

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Champs!

TSN.ca ALERT: Green Bay Packers defeat Pittsburgh Steelers 31-25 to win Super Bowl XLV in Dallas.
Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless handheld

George and Canada win gold

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

2011 Winter Universiade

Women's hockey: Canada makes it back-to-back gold

Feb. 5, 2011

ERZURUM, Turkey (CIS) – Canada successfully defended its Winter Universiade title in women's hockey on Saturday afternoon defeating Finland 4-1 in the gold-medal final, a Cemal Gursel Arena.

IIHF game summary: http://www.erzurum2011.gov.tr/pdfts/IHW400101/C74 Team Canada website: http://english.cis-sic.ca/universiade/winter

2011 Winter Universiade website: http://www.erzurum2011.gov.tr/english

Canada also won gold in 2009 when the sport made its Universiade debut in Harbin, China, thanks to a 3-1 win over the host team.

The red-and-white squad comprised exclusively of Canadian Interuniversity Sport all-stars finished the 2011 tournament with an unblemished 7-0 record including a 2-1 shootout victory over Finland (5-1-1) in their preliminary round opener on Jan. 27.

"It's a great moment for us. We didn't play of best game today. We did a lot of good things but we struggled a little bit in our zone. But in the end, we're a team that came together over the two weeks and we accomplished what we came here to do," said Team Canada head coach Les Lawton. "After we took a three-goal lead we felt pretty comfortable. I didn't think they could score four on us."

"Over the past two weeks, we tried to do things that would help develop the game in other countries and I think we were successful. Our players did a great job of stepping up and embracing the other teams. You could see we have the respect of the other countries and that's very rewarding," added the Concordia University bench boss.

"Finland came out really strong today. It was a tough game all the way through. We came here with a goal and we knew what we wanted to do. We're really excited to come out of this game on top. It's an unbelievable feeling right now," said team captain Andrea Ironside.

"We came in as defending champs so we had some pressure on ourselves but we played through it all. I think we did a great job of stepping up to the challenge," added the Wilfrid Laurier rearguard from Collingwood, Ont., one of six returnees from the 2009 championship team. "We are overjoyed with everything, from the organizing committee to the facilities and the people. Turkey has been truly phenomenal."

Four different players scored for Canada including University of Montreal's Kim Deschênes of Saint-Quentin, N.B., Guelph's Jessica Zerafa of Mississauga, Ont., as well as McGill teammates Ann-Sophie Bettez of Sept-Îles, Que., and Carly Hill of Dorval, Que.

Wilfrid Laurier netminder Liz Knox of Stoufville, Ont., made 20 saves to earn her fourth win in as many starts.

Canada fired 34 shots at Finnish goalie Anna Vanhatalo including a 13-7 advantage in the first period and a 12-4 edge in the second.

Deschênes, who found the back of the net for a fifth straight match, opened the scoring with 91 seconds left in the first frame when she beat a defender, kicked the puck to her stick and beat Vanhatalo up top. It marked the third time in the competition that Deschênes scored the game's first goal.

Zerafa tallied what would be the game-winner 4:01 into the middle stanza. She took advantage of traffic in front of the net to roof a rebound over Vanhatalo's right shoulder for her fourth of the tourney.

After Bettez made it 3-0 late in the second period with her fifth goal of the event, Finland came back to within two 2:19 into the third when Venla Hovi buried a rebound past Knox during a power play.

Hill, who was also part of the 2009 gold-medal team, put the game away with a power-play marker with 3:33 left on the clock.

GAME NOTES: In addition to Ironside and Hill, other 2009 returnees included University of Alberta's Andrea Boras of Calgary, York's Kelsey Webster of Duncan, B.C., Moncton's Mariève Provost of Laval, Que., and York's Courtney Unruh of Fort St. John, B.C... Wilfrid Laurier forward Candice Styles of Orangeville, Ont., who picked up an assist in the final, and Saskatchewan's Breanne George of Saskatoon both finished with a team-leading 12 points, good for sixth in the tournament scoring race... Styles finished third in goals with eight, while George was tied for fourth with seven... Brock goalie Beth Clause of Hamilton, who was Knox's backup in the final, didn't allow a goal on 25 shots in 200 minutes of action in the tournament to finish first in goals against average (0.00), save percentage (1.000) and shutouts (3)... Know, who allowed three goals in 225 minutes of play, finished second in GAA (0.80) and save% (.921)...


Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless handheld

Friday, February 4, 2011

Huskie hockey and basketball sweep

Saskatchewan 3 UBC 0 (men's hockey)

Steven DaSilvs's first period goal was all the offense the Huskies would need as goaltender David Reekie turned aside 32 shots for his second shutout of the season as the Huskies opened the weekend with a 3-0 win over UBC.

Andrew Bailey and Brett Ward added singles for the Huskies who picked up their fourth consecutive win to improve to 14-7-0 on the season. The two teams hit the ice Saturday night for the second game of the weekend series in Vancouver.

Elsewhere in Canada West the Calgary Dinos did the Huskies a favor beating the Manitoba Bisons 6-2 while Alberta beat Regina by a 5-3 score.

Saskatchewan's win combined with Manitoba's loss moves the Huskies into sole position of second place in Canada West with 28 points while Calgary and Manitoba become tied for third with 26 points each. Alberta is able to remain alone in first place with 30 points and are just two points ahead of Saskatchewan.

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Saskatchewan 3 UBC 2 (women's hockey)

The women's Huskies hockey team was successful at home against UBC Friday night picking up a 3-2 win in front of a boisterous 284 at Rutherford Rink.

Chelsey Sundby scored the winner late in the third period in game where emotions ran high. Teegan Heintz and Julie Paetsch also added singles for the Huskies while Kaylee Chanakos and Amanda Asay replied for UBC.

The Huskies remain in fourth place and will be hard pressed to move up with just three games left in the regular season.

UBC and Saskatchewan meet again Saturday night at Rutherford Rink with puck-drop scheduled for 7:00pm.

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Huskies basketball results at the PAC:

Saskatchewan 98 Alberta 73 (men's basketball)

Saskatchewan 82 Alberta 70 (women's basketball) *Kim Tulloch career-high 28 points.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Blades 6 Pats 2

The Blades found themselves lacking against the Pats this season, falling behind in the season series 2 games to 1. Saskatoon worked hard tonight to bring up those stats with a 6-2 win and a now even versus the Pats as they look forward to two more regular season games with the Queen City.

Right off the hop Teigan Zahn and Shayne Neigum set the pace for the first period; 15 seconds in they dropped gloves for the first of two battles tonight. Following that the two Blades imports, Marek Viedensky and Matej Stransky, scored 24 seconds apart. Jake Trask notched another goal for Saskatoon and the Blades went into the dressing room with a 3-point lead, outshooting the Pats 23-11 in the first.

Point-leader in the Blades-Pats series, Jordan Weal, put the visiting team on the board at 13:16 of the second period. Duncan Siemens scored on the powerplay and one minute later Curtis Hamilton picked up his 17th goal of the season as Schenn received his third assist of the night. Stanford made another 11 saves, including some impressive acrobatics as he stacked the pads and kicked away a sure thing.

Mid-way through the third period Neigum was given credit for a Pats goal, after a shot that rebounded from a save by Stanford was pushed in by Siemens as he uncontrollably slid into the net. Trask continued to rack up the points with another Blades goal to top off the night and the home team dominated 6-2.

The Blades continue their 5-game homes stand on Saturday when they take on the Lethbridge Hurricanes at 7:05 in Credit Union Centre.

(courtesy SaskatoonBlades.om)
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