By Jayson Hajdu
The very first game at Princeton’s Hobey Baker Rink was played on January 5, 1923. One-hundred years later, the Tigers will celebrate “Hobey 100 Weekend” at one of college hockey’s most storied venues.
Princeton hosts ECAC rivals Harvard and Dartmouth on Friday and Saturday, respectively, shining the spotlight on a series of tributes to the nation’s oldest on-campus arena. The events include a ceremonial puck drop with members of the 141st Aerial Squadron – Hobey Baker’s squadron during World War I – as well as appearances by Princeton alumni and former NHLers George Parros (1999-2003) and Kevin Westgarth (2003-07).
Fellow Stanley Cup champions and former Tigers Brent Flahr (1992-96) and Chris Patrick (1995-96, 1997-98) will also take part in the festivities.
Additionally, Princeton hockey alum General Mark Milley (1976-78), chairman of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff, will drop the ceremonial puck Saturday.
Elsewhere around the country, this week’s top-20 PairWise matchups include:
- #9 Ohio State vs. #13 Michigan State (Friday, Saturday)
- #2 Quinnipiac vs. #10 Harvard (Saturday)
- #1 Minnesota vs. #5 St. Cloud State (Saturday, Sunday)
College Hockey News: Polin makes history at GLI
College Hockey News: Who are the top candidates for the Hobey Baker Award?
College Hockey News: Maine’s Long Road Back
KELOLAND News: First-ever game approaching for Augustana hockey
New England Hockey Journal: Biggest storylines of the first half in New England men’s college hockey
The Hockey News: Logan Cooley is the World Juniors’ forgotten star
The Rink Live: Gophers’ impromptu ‘Legends Tour’ brings them face-to-face with program’s biggest star
The Rink Live: For UND commit Jayden Perron, sister’s love motivates him to play and be his best
USCHO: Miami hockey SID Cary fulfills lifelong dream with recent appearance on ‘Wheel of Fortune’
Bulldog Insider Podcast: Behind the scenes of promoting six Hobey Baker winners with Bob Nygaard
College Hockey West Weekly: Welcoming Lindenwood head coach Rick Zombo
CHN Insiders Podcast: Post-holiday catch-up
Princeton Hockey Talk Podcast: Coaches and players discuss “Hobey 100 Weekend”
USCHO Spotlight: Alaska Anchorage head coach Matt Shasby talks Seawolves hockey
USCHO Weekend Review: Holiday tournaments crown three champs, PairWise sees some big moves
While college hockey celebrates one of its most revered arenas in Princeton, the sport will also showcase itself at a uniquely non-traditional venue this weekend in Boston.
Fenway Park – the home of Major League Baseball’s Red Sox – will host “Frozen Fenway 2023,” a weekend of college hockey culminating Saturday with a Hockey East men’s doubleheader featuring Northeastern vs. Connecticut, and Massachusetts vs. Boston College.
UConn enters the week tied with Merrimack atop the conference standings.
The weekend kicks off Friday with a women’s doubleheader that features Harvard vs. Quinnipiac, and Boston University vs. Holy Cross.
All four games will be broadcast live on NESN.
Going For Gold:
A pair of current NCAA standouts will square off for the gold medal tonight at the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Michigan freshman F Adam Fantilli (Nobleton, Ontario) scored the game-winning goal and added an assist last night in Canada’s 6-2 semifinal victory over the United States. In the other semifinal, Providence freshman F Jaroslav Chmelar (Nove Mesto and Metuji, Czechia) helped lift Czechia to a 2-1 overtime win over Sweden.
Team USA, whose roster features 23 current, committed or former NCAA players, faces Sweden in the bronze-medal game.
Polin Still Rollin’:
Jason Polin’s (Holt, Mich.) incredible senior season continued last weekend at the Great Lakes Invitational (GLI) in Grand Rapids, Mich.
The Western Michigan forward registered back-to-back hat tricks – the second time he’s done so this season – to carry the Broncos to the GLI title with wins over Michigan Tech and Ferris State. They were Polin’s fourth and fifth hat tricks of the year.
Polin now leads the country with 19 goals in 22 games, three more than he had in 39 tilts a year ago, and he ranks second in the national scoring race with 30 points.
Paul Standing Tall:
Penn State graduate D and team captain Paul DeNaples (Moscow, Pa.) played in his 155th consecutive game in Saturday’s 3-1 win over RIT, breaking the program record previously held by Chase Berger (2015-19).
DeNaples, who has three goals and three assists in 22 contests this season, has yet to miss a game in his collegiate career.
From Blueline to Bench:
A former collegiate defense pairing will match wits behind the bench this weekend when North Dakota hosts Lindenwood in a non-conference series Friday and Saturday.
UND head coach Brad Berry (North Dakota, 1983-86) and Lindenwood bench boss Rick Zombo (North Dakota, 1981-84) were defense partners on North Dakota’s 1983-84 squad while Berry was a freshman and Zombo a junior. Both went on to play in the NHL -- Zombo logging 652 contests with Detroit, St. Louis and Boston, and Berry appearing in 241 games with Winnipeg, Minnesota and Dallas.
Interestingly, a third member of that 1983-84 North Dakota blueline was current Minnesota Duluth head coach Scott Sandelin (North Dakota, 1982-86).
A trio of standouts were honored by the Hockey Commissioners Association earlier this week for their performances in December.
Bowling Green sophomore F Austen Swankler (North Huntingdon, Pa.) was named HCA Player of the Month after racking up six goals and 15 points in seven December games. He also extended his point streak to 12 games in the process.
Additionally, Long Island freshman F Patriks Marcinkevicks (Riga, Latvia) was named Rookie of the Month, and Alaska senior Matt Radomsky (Winnipeg, Manitoba) garnered Goaltender of the Month honors. Marcinkevicks had a nation’s-best 11 assists in seven contests, while Radomsky went 5-0-0 with a 1.04 GAA and .955 save percentage.
You Can Quote Me On That:
“I speak for probably every Michigan hockey player when I say the GLI is something you grow up watching, and something that really catches attention and opens eyes. Everybody sees the big stage and the level of players and teams at this level, and it makes it surreal to be able to be a part of it.”
-- Western Michigan sophomore F Dylan Wendt, a Michigan native, on the Broncos’ Great Lakes Invitational championship (source: USCHO).
NHL Note of the Week:
Los Angeles G Pheonix Copley (Michigan Tech, 2012-14) is riding a career-best seven-game winning streak and has rattled off a 9-1-0 record since being recalled from AHL Ontario in early December. His seven wins since Dec. 15 are tops among NHL goaltenders.
The 30-year-old native of North Pole, Alaska, boasts a 2.52 GAA and .908 save percentage on the season while limiting his opponents to two goals or fewer in seven of his 10 starts.
Fries at the Bottom of the Bag:
Alaska Anchorage swept host UMass Lowell last weekend, the first road sweep for the Seawolves since Feb. 23-24, 2018 … UAA freshman G Jared Whale (Calgary, Alberta) earned his first collegiate win in the series opener Friday despite the Seawolves being outshot 54-12 … Union’s 3-2 win over New Hampshire on New Year’s Eve came despite just 10 shots on goal, the lowest single-game total in the program’s Division I era … Bowling Green senior F Alex Barber (Dublin, Ohio) reached the 100-point plateau for his career in Friday’s win over RPI … Penn State went 10-0-0 out of league this season, the first perfect non-conference regular-season record in program history.
College Hockey Inc. Resources:
- College Hockey Inc. Media Center
- College Hockey National Pronunciation Guide
- NHL Matchup Tool
- NCAA Alums in the NHL This Season
- Former Collegians in NHL Front Offices
- College Players With 1,000 NHL Games
- NHL Draft Picks Playing in the NCAA
Did you know? 93% of NCAA Division I men’s hockey players earn their degree!