Minnesota Duluth Defeats UMass For Second Straight Title

Standing on the brink of history, the UMass hockey miracle finally ran aground. In a signature performance, Minnesota Duluth suffocated the Minutemen for 60 minutes, outplaying them in every facet of the game, crushing their championship dreams 3-0. 

Duluth, officially designated a dynasty, jumped the Minutemen in the game’s opening two minutes. Swarming the UMass defenders, the Bulldogs generated a half-dozen shots, three grade-A chances, and a drawn penalty. In the final analysis, UMass never recovered. Duluth captain Parker MacKay roofed a backhand on the ensuing power play, and the champs had the only goal they needed. 

“I don’t know if nervous is the right word, but we were out of sorts,” said UMass coach Carvel about the opening sequence.

The final three-goal differential did not reflect the severity of this night’s mismatch. UMass senior Kurt Keats summed it up best. “They’re a different animal,” said Keats. “One that we haven’t really seen all year.”

Duluth outworked and outmuscled UMass to such an extreme degree, that the Minutemen managed a mere seven shots at the game’s halfway point, 18 for the game. The UMass power play, so dominant throughout the season, went 0 for 4 with just 3 shots attempted in the championship game. But analytics didn’t tell this story of dominance—seeing was believing.

College hockey media maven Bernie Corbett called Duluth, “Seal Team Six, the guys that took out Bin Laden.” He witnessed them do the same thing in last year’s Frozen Four as well, strangling the life out of Ohio State and Notre Dame. Buffalo 2019 was the program’s third championship of the decade. Playing Duluth and its anaconda style, a two-goal deficit is a mountain, three is Everest. 

This championship game was also a bittersweet farewell to Cale Makar, a player the college hockey universe won’t soon forget. Experts are convinced that Makar will be playing in the NHL’s Stanley Cup playoffs Monday, but his heart was clearly with his college mates after this farewell game. He came to the podium still wearing the UMass colors, adorned in a sweaty sweater. 

“I just want to keep it on as long as I can. I’m so very honored and humbled to put this jersey on every single game. Our team has brought so much respect to our program. Honestly, it’s going to be a couple of years that I never forget my entire life.”

Carvel, Makar’s partner in thrusting UMass to hockey prominence over two seasons, made a salient point about his superstar. “He’s a better person than he is a player.”

This was not a heartbroken UMass team on the podium; they had been defeated so thoroughly that they could actually pause and consider what they HAD accomplished without suffering the pain of what could have been. There’s was a season of unimaginable accomplishments for a squad picked to finish in the middle of the Hockey East pack: it’s first #1 national ranking; it’s first Hockey East regular season title; it’s first Frozen Four. Heady stuff for a team that had only managed five wins two seasons ago. 

The face of the program, Makar, spoke to its recent transformation. “The amount of respect that we’ve created for this emblem of Massachusetts and UMass, it’s just amazing.”

Atlantic Hockey Watch Guide: Week Of October 14

A big week for Atlantic Hockey is upon us, as conference play really gets going in earnest. As always, be sure to check out our full event schedule to see the other college puck we've got with the WCHA and Big Ten.

WCHA Watch Guide: Week Of October 14

Another week of WCHA action comes to FloHockey, with a relatively light schedule of strictly of home games for WCHA squads. Be sure to check out our full event schedule as several WCHA teams face off against Big Ten opponents this week. 

Gotkin, Mercyhurst Won't Rest On Their Laurels After Arizona State Win

While it was a good opening weekend as a whole for Atlantic Hockey, which opened up exclusively in non-conference play, it was Mercyhurst’s dramatic comeback win over Arizona State which easily garnered the most attention.

Atlantic Hockey Announces First Weekly Award Winners Of The Season

Via Atlantic Hockey press release.

Bowling Green Beats Miami-Ohio In Emotional 'Bergeron Bowl'

Miami (OH) hockey fans witnessed a sports anomaly Sunday: their coach going through the post-game handshake line giving full-bodied hugs to every player in the enemy uniform. 

7 Big Ten Questions Ahead Of The 2019-20 Season

The puck will drop on the 2019-20 Big Ten season this weekend as all seven teams begin non-conference play.

FloHockey Oct. 7 Weekly Watch Guide: WCHA Conference Play Kicks Off

The first full weekend of college hockey has already come and gone, and now we're in the middle of the season. Let's get to it.

FloSports Amplifies Hockey Expertise Adding Industry Veteran Marc Ruskin

Ruskin to expand content and coverage around 600+ college games on FloHockey.tv.

FloSports Rebrands, Launches Android App

null

You may have noticed something different about FloHockey this week… 

Sandelin & Minnesota-Duluth Take Aim At A 3rd Straight National Title

The first polls of the college hockey season are out, with defending champion Minnesota Duluth the consensus top team in the country. No surprise there, yet should Scott Sandelin’s Bulldogs actually finish the season as No. 1, they will have done the unimaginable in today’s day and age — three-peating in college hockey.