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NCAA Frozen Four Semifinals - April 11, 2019

NCAA Frozen Four Semifinals – Buffalo, NY

Massachusetts Minutemen 4 vs Denver Pioneers 3 (OT)

F Cole Guttman, DEN: 2-1-3, +2, 0 PIM, 6 SOG, 9/17 FO
Season Totals: 41 GP, 14-12-26, +16, 18 PIM

Bolt prospect Cole Guttman scored two goals in the 3rd period to erase a 3-1 Denver deficit and force overtime against the Minutemen. In the opening period, Guttman helped setup a Colin Staub (undrafted) power play marker that gave the Pioneers an early 1-0, but David Carle led Denver squad got into penalty trouble and gave up three 1st period power play goals to UMass and trailed 3-1 at the end of the 1st. Marc Del Gaizo (undrafted) scored the OT game-winner for the Minutemen at 15:18 in the extra session. Denver finishes the season with a record of 24-12-5, and Guttman’s 14 goals are good for T-4 among Division I freshman in the nation.

Providence Friars 1 vs Minnesota-Duluth Bulldogs 3

F Cole Koepke, UMD: 0-0-0, +2, 0 PIM, 2 SOG
Season Totals: 41 GP, 7-12-19, +13, 14 PIM

Justin Richards (undrafted), son of Lightning assistant coach Todd Richards, scored twice for the Bulldogs and Hunter Shepard (undrafted) made 28 saves as the defending national champions and pre-season top-ranked UMD squad punched their ticket back to Saturday nights NCAA Championship Game against Massachusetts. After a scoreless 1st period, Richards opened the scoring in the 2nd to give the Bulldogs their first lead. But it was short lived, as the Friars bounced back, knotting the score at 1-1 from a power-play marker from Josh Wilkins (undrafted). Billy Exell (undrafted) scored the eventual game-winner at the midpoint of the 3rd to re-establish the UMD lead at 2-1, and then the Bulldogs would seal the victory with a pair of empty netters in the last 33 seconds of the game as Providence pressed for the equalizer. Koepke finished scoreless, though he did have a goal called back due to his goaltender interference at the top of the crease.

ECHL Playoffs Game Night 4-10-19

South Division Semi-Finals
South Carolina Stingrays 2 @ Orlando Solar Bears 0
South Carolina leads best-of-7 series, 1-0

W/C Troy Bourke, ORL: 0-0-0, -1, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
(AHL contract)
Season Totals (ORL): 30 GP, 11-33-44, +11, 18 PIM
Season Totals (SYR): 25 GP, 1-5-6, -3, 6 PIM
17-18 Totals (ADK): 22 GP, 10-22-32, +11, 18 PIM
17-18 Totals (SYR): 6 GP, 1-0-1, E, 2 PIM

C Mitch Hults, ORL: 0-0-0, -1, 2 PIM, 4 SOG
Season Totals (ORL): 39 GP, 6-19-25, -4, 30 PIM
Season Totals (SYR): 9 GP, 1-3-4, -2, 4 PIM
Season Totals (SD): 2 GP, 0-1-1, E, 0 PIM
17-18 Totals (Utah): 5 GP, 2-5-7, -2, 10 PIM
17-18 Totals (SD): 53 GP, 10-14-24, -10, 8 PIM

G Connor Ingram, ORL: Loss, 26 saves on 27 shots, *Second Star*
Season Totals (ORL): 13 GP, 8-2-0, 2.41 GAA, .914 sv%, 1 SO
Season Totals (SYR): 22 GP, 14-7-0, 2.26 GAA, .922 sv%, 6 SO
17-18 Totals (SYR): 35 GP, 20-11-0, 2.33 GAA, .914 sv%, 4 SO

C/W Alexey Lipanov, ORL: 0-0-0, E, 0 PIM, 1 SOG
Season Totals (ORL): 3 GP 1-2-3, +1, 0 PIM
Playoff Totals (KIT): 4 GP, 0-1-1, -3, 0 PIM
Season Totals (KIT): 62 GP, 12-18-30, -36, 16 PIM
17-18 Totals (BAR, SBY): 55 GP, 14-25-39, -14, 10 PIM

South Carolina’s Parker Milner stopped all 26 shots he faced to lift the Stingrays to a 2-0 road win in Game 1 of their South Division Semi-Final series against Orlando. For the Solar Bears, Connor Ingram stopped all but one shot he saw to finish as second star, but he took the loss. South Carolina’s second goal was scored into an empty net.

Orlando was without Olivier Archambeault (AHL contract), who was called up to AHL Syracuse. Archambeault has not been a regular in the Solar Bears lineup for most of the season until the last couple weeks. He is listed on the playoff reserve list for Orlando, who was required to submit their 23-man roster to the league Tuesday. Others on the reserve list include Syracuse’s Nolan Valleau, Jonne Tammela, Matthew Spencer, Oleg Sosunov, Corbin Boes, and Otto Somppi.

Game 2 is Friday in Orlando.

NHL Playoff Game Night: 4-10-19 Blue Jackets at Lightning

Most embarrassing loss in Lightning playoff history.

CBJ-4
TB-3

Columbus Leads the Series 1-0

Andrei Vasilevskiy allowed 4 goals on 26 shots for the loss.

First Period
4:12 TB Killorn (1), (unassisted)(SH)
11:01 TB Cirelli (1), (Cernak, Miller)
17:50 TB Gourde (1), (Sergachev, Rutta)

Second Period
9:15 CBJ Foligno (1), (Anderson)

Third Period
7:56 CBJ Savard (1), (unassisted)
11:54 CBJ Anderson (1), (Jenner)(SH)
14:05 CBJ Jones (1), (Panarin, Werenski)(PP)

Anthony Cirelli was the game's second star.

I'm hard pressed to think of a time I've been more embarrassed by this team's effort. This first round matchup against Columbus isn't a test of talent or tactics. It's a test of heart and will. They're up against a team coached by John Tortorella and they decided to take their collective foot off the gas after twenty minutes of hockey? Really? Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard, and this Lightning team completely took the Second Period of this contest off and then proceeded to make brain cramp after brain cramp in the Third Period to allow Columbus to steal a win in a game where they'd have been dead and buried long prior had the Lightning maintained any semblance of consistent effort.

I have no idea why the Lightning coaching staff chose the defensive lineup they did, but in no universe should the Sergachev and Rutta pairing be playing in a playoff game. They spent the entire Second Period hemmed up and under pressure. How in the blue hell did Rutta end up with more ice time than Erik Cernak? And, why in the hell do you leave one of your most rugged and experienced customers like Braydon Coburn in the press box against THAT opponent?

And, may I suggest to a few forwards who decided to play tentative milquetoast hockey tonight like Tyler Johnson to follow Yanni Gourde's lead and treat a playoff hockey game with playoff intensity?

They had an opportunity in the Second Period of this game to completely break Columbus' confidence and run Bobrovsky out of the series. Now they're facing a do or die contest in Game Two instead. If that doesn't light a fire under them then they really are nothing but a paper tiger and all the regular season records in the world won't change it. How bad does this Lightning team really want it? Because, in all sports, greatness is only validated by winning championships. Nothing else.

Box score and extended statistics from NHL.com.

Training Camp Numbers: Podcast Episode 7

The podcast resumes this week as the playoffs get underway. Listen for Lightning player and prospect talk ... as well as some more soapboxes.

For first-timers, Training Camp Numbers looks at Lightning prospects (who get and are often stuck with the obscure training camp numbers), Lightning talking points, and the NHL news of the week.

This week: PLAYOFFS??

    Draft lottery madness
    Portland writer whining about Amalie Arena
    Where is Tampa as a hockey town?
    Analytics debate on Kucherov
    Award season
    Prospect update
    Your questions
    It's A Numbers Game
    TCN Draft: TB unsung playoff heroes

Thanks to Andrew Weiss for leading and hosting the show. Enjoy the Lightning talk on iTunes, Spotify, and a bunch of other platforms.

Click here to listen.

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