Saturday, November 14, 2009

Alaska Nanooks 1, Bowling Green 3

I've been really dreading the composition of this post, hence why this isn't going up until late Saturday night, even though I started writing this during the 3rd period. But sometimes, life doesn't always throw lemons your way. The game really did not go the Nanooks way, and to be honest, they weren't getting much done in almost any aspect of the game.

 The 'Nooks have kinda had the hot and cold thing going for the last few years, coming up with a big win against a strong opponent (in this case, Notre Dame. Or Miami, like last year) and then dropping a game against a weak opponent the following week. BGSU is a team that we should have swept. There shouldn't have been any reason not to. Not taking anything away from BGSU, they played a strong game and made us work for everything we got, but up until yesterday, the only team to score 3+ goals against us was Notre Dame. To have Bowling Green in that category is kind of appalling (especially since they did it twice).

Our biggest fault of the night, were turnovers. We handed the puck over to them on numerous occasions in the transition game, and that alone accounted for two of BG's three tallies on the night. We were poor in our offensive production, not setting up the puck, bad passing, and not being able to really get control of pucks deep. We played a lot of dump and chase offense, and very rarely were we able to chase down the puck before the Falcons broke out.

The best and the worst part is, Bowling Green was only able to muster 14 shots on the evening. From a defensive perspective, thats usually a good thing, but the bad thing is that of those 14 shots, 3 went in. Poor Greenham, definitely didn't have a career night with a .786 save percentage and a 3.02 GAA (since he didn't technically play for the full game), definitely going to make an impact on his stats this early in the season. Hopefully not too much.

Granted, this was our first trip to the lower 48, and with the amount of freshman in our lineup, this was their first opportunity to see what our away games are like. As I mentioned last week, our team travels a lot of miles to play our opponents, and traveling can wear you down pretty bad. I don't want to use travel as an excuse for a loss, that would be stupid, all things considered. But this weekend was a great chance for our freshman to get a feel for our travel schedule. The Nanooks will stay away and travel to Sault Saint Marie, Michigan on Tuesday to prepare to take on the Lake State Lakers.

Going into this weekend, the Nanooks were ranked ninth. After this, we may slip, but I still think we are going to be in the top 10 with Vermont getting their butts kicked by BC, and Cornell losing to Yale, the rankings may adjust above us to keep us relatively solid where we are at. Hopefully, the focus this week will be off of us and on #1 Miami falling to two shoot out losses to Ferris State, one of which went for 11 rounds before FSU pulled it off. Keep in mind, shoot out wins only matter in CCHA standings, as the NCAA still views it as a tie. After game one against BGSU, the Nanooks fell to number nine in the PairWise rankings.

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