Atlantic Hockey-Take Heed, the Colonials Are Coming

Back in November, when the Chargers of Alabama Huntsville took on the Colonials of Robert Morris, a lot of parallels in terms of physicality and grit showed through in that opening series. While the Chargers frustrated Robert Morris a bit with their speed, the Colonials played sound defensively and drew a litany of infractions from a young team.

Why?

The Colonials seem to be able to score with consistency this year. In addition, given their location they have played some tough non conference opponents this year, first among them being the Falcons of Bowling Green. In a game that they had no business being in, they lead the top ten Falcons late into the third period.

As Colonials’ Head Coach Derek Schooley said of that affair, “I loved our game for 55 minutes, but unfortunately 55 isn’t 60.  We got away from what was working for us for five minutes, and a very skilled team made us pay. I thought we won the battle at 5-on-5, but they won it on special teams and that ended up being the difference. I’m proud of the way we played for the most part, and there’s some real positives to take away from it for us, but we needed to close that game out. It’s about playing smart and playing a mature game and at times we got away from that.”

With that small detail, let’s move back to this team in Atlantic Hockey. For anyone to challenge the back-to-back defending champions in AIC, they need to play a similar game relying on good goaltending, quick scoring in bunches, and consistent defense. These Colonials have all of that as their 4-1 conference record shows.

As Ed Trefzger, RIT play-by-play voice and USCHO writer said quite elequently, ” The addition of UConn transfer Jordan Timmons, a Pittsburgh native, has given Robert Morris a potent top line with juniors Timmons, Grant Hebert, and Justin Addamo. And they’re intimidating, with Addamo at 6′-6″, Hebert at 6′-3″. and Timmons at 6 feet even. That’s a pretty big forward line at any level and especially in Atlantic Hockey.”

This line did well against UAH, and has continued to improve as the year has gone on. For immediate offense, defense, and physicality, one can start with this line. Should they continue to score in bunches, the NHL could be the future home of many of these talented players. In addition, the depth of the Colonials does a superb job at allowing their stars, like their first line, to be themselves a bit easier by not forcing scoring looks.

In addition, following the Bowling Green tough effort, these Colonials knocked off a fast Niagara side 6-1. While the Colonials have a more well rounded team, Niagara plays a very fast game and likes to get on the board early and defend. Today, after freshman Noah West played a strong start to the game in net, the Colonials found their scoring touch in bunches in the second, and poured it on from there. After a tough loss to a nationally ranked team, they came back and dominated time and space against a team that can do a lot without either of those two things.

Why does Robert Morris matter?

Well, given the subjective nature of the tournament this year, and its selection, how they have played against Bowling Green gives credence to, under the right setup, Atlantic Hockey maybe earning two or more bids this season because of the dearth of teams (only four) playing in the ECAC, among other things. Also, this is a veteran team that has not seemed to waver all year or play beyond their skates at all. Schooley has all of them on the same page and ready to make the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2014.

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Questions with UND Goaltending Coach Matt Hrynkiw

(Photo Credit: Kelsey Lee-Violent Turtle Photography)

Since graduating, Matt Hrynkiw has found his way back to UND Hockey as a volunteer goaltending coach. He mentors three goalies this season in sophomore Peter Thome, freshman Adam Scheel, and senior Ryan Anderson. Below are some questions on Hrynkiw’s background and thoughts on his goalies, and more.

1)What inspired you to take the goalie coach job when Karl went to Syracuse?

Honestly, I felt extremely fortunate to even be considered as a successor for Karl.  Karl Goehring is a brilliant hockey mind and had the total respect and admiration of every goalie that he worked with. When Brad approached me about the opportunity it was a no brainier. I jumped on it right away. Can’t say enough about how much a value the role and the chance to be a continuing part of this incredible program at UND.

2) Tell us a little bit about each of the goalies in the room ? What do they bring to the team on and off the ice?

 

Ryan Anderson is great goalie but an even more incredible guy. He brings the best he has each day and strives to improve while being the best possible teammate. We really value Bob for what he brings with leadership and integrity while also keeping the mood light around the guys when appropriate . As a person, he is quiet and humble but the team and coaching staff hold him in an extremely high regard.

Peter Thome is an extremely focused guy who takes a lot of pride in his craft. He likes to compete and is always looking to improve. He welcomes a challenge and pushes himself extremely hard. He’s an interesting character and welcomes heckling as he is known to give it right back to the source.

Adam Scheel is a tireless worker who also has some very impressive natural ability. He has great instincts and fundamentals which make him tough to beat. Off the ice he seems to always have a grin on his face. He never stirs up too much controversy but always has an interesting opinion if you can get him talking.

3) What inspired you to become a goalie?
Upon getting into hockey, I was on a team that lacked defensive depth so i found i had the greatest impact on the game by playing goal. It also didn’t hurt that my dad and grandfather were both  goaltenders and were encouraging me in that direction.
4)How important to NCAA goalkeeping at-large would approval of a third paid assistant coach be?
It’s obviously very difficult to speculate, but I will say I believe the NCAA already consistently produces some extremely strong goaltending prospects.
5)What is the biggest improvement in Peter Thome’s game from year one?
Peter has worked hard at this flexibility as well as his foot work in demanding situations. I feel he has made significant strides in both.
6)How has UND helped you in your career?
UND has helped me academically and professionally. I was fairly driven person prior to arriving but my time at UND molded me into a professional. Its amazing how much you can learn in 4 years and i am extremely grateful to be associated with the hockey team and the greater community of Grand Forks.
7)What should prospective athletes in any sport know about UND that they may not?
Prospective student athletes should know that this university values great people and I would encourage any prospective athlete to come here and meet the coaches, staff, advisors, and fellow athletes. Its something that’s hard to quantify but I feel you can get a pretty solid feel of the character and values of a people upon face to face meeting.
8)What inspired the staff to look at Adam Scheel?
Adam Scheel has a very good foundation and has excelled at every level. His character and work ethic complement his skills and made it so a number of college teams were rightfully interested in him.
9)What are your professional goals in hockey?
At this point my goal is to keep UND as an elite goaltender producing program in college hockey. Bringing this program another national title also is our greatest focus as a team and staff as well.

 

UND Hockey Alums Around the World:Ryan Duncan

With hockey season right around the corner we will be publishing some interviews with University of North Dakota Hockey alumni from around the world. We will be talking to alumni both currently playing hockey, and those that have used their education to pursue other ventures.

Today’s interview is with Ryan Duncan. He was a member of the Duncan-Oshie-Toews (DOT) line that featured some of the best forward play this University has ever seen. Duncan won the Hobey Baker award in 2007, and has gone on to play most of his professional career in Austria for Red Bull Salzburg. He has won four league titles with Red Bull Salzburg in Austria’s top league known as the Erste Bank Eishockey Liga (EBEL). He has numerous accolades at the team and individual level both in college hockey and in Austria.

Below are our questions and his responses:

1. What has been your favorite off-ice moment playing since you started your pro career?

” The birth of my daughter. It was an incredible experience to be a part of. It changed my perspective on a lot of things. It was truly life-changing and an extremely proud moment.”

2. What are your plans when you are finished playing hockey?

” Great question. I don’t know exactly what I want to do for work quite yet, I hope to stay involved with hockey in some capacity but my top priority will be being there for my daughter and helping create a healthy environment for her to grow up in.”

3. How much do you follow the current UND team now?

” I follow the current UND team pretty closely. I’m a fan. Any outlet that covers the team or gives updates about the team I probably follow it. I love watching the highlights and tracking their progress.”

4. What did you do to celebrate UND’s National Championship in 2016?

” I was in the middle of a playoff run over here in Austria so there wasn’t the preferred amount of celebrating but I probably pestered my current teammates by gloating about my former team. Then when the time was right, me and my Wife (who is a former UND women’s hockey player) raised a glass to UND’s accomplishment.”

5. What are some things that UND fans might like about the European game?

” I think UND fans would like the style of play and the atmosphere in the arena. it’s a finesse game with a lot of skill and the atmosphere in the stands is a fun one with lots of drum banging and local chants.”

6. During your UND time, who were some of your teammates with the biggest personality?

” I played with a lot of characters at UND. Two I’ll mention are Brett Hextall and Matt Watkins. Brett is just a really smart and clever guy who makes people feel comfortable around him. Matt is a really unique and interesting person. He grew up in rural Saskatchewan so just the perspective he brings to life makes him really fun to be around.”

7. Who has been your favorite coach to play for at any level?

” My favorite coaches were Tom Ward and Dave Hakstol. Coach Ward was my coach in high school at Shattuck-St. Mary’s. He taught me so much about life and hockey. I developed more because of him than any other coach I played for. Coach Hakstol helped continue that progression once I got to college. He really encouraged and taught the professionalism that is needed on a daily basis to be successful in the game of hockey and in life.”

8. What do you most miss about UND and Grand Forks?

” I miss everything about Grand Forks and UND. What I miss most is Red Pepper and going to school with thousands of kids around your same age. It’s a special time in life. N ot too many better things than a Saturday night after at home weekend sweep in Grand Forks.”

9. What are some interesting things in Austria that you like to do or see in your off time?

” Me and my Wife like to explore the area around Salzburg in our off time. Salzburg is a beautiful city surrounded by mountains so there’s no shortage of adventures for us to go on.”

10. What are some hockey-related goals you want to accomplish before retiring?

” My hockey related goal before I retire is simple, make EC Red Bull Salzburg a better team and organization because I’m a part of it. It’s a great organization to play for and I want to help to continue to make it even better.”

11. How many more years do you want to keep playing hockey?

” I want to keep playing hockey as long as I can. I have no set time table. I love the game and I’m passionate about it so I hope to continue playing for many more years to come. It’s a great life.”

12. What are you most thankful for learning from UND?

” I’m most thankful for learning from UND how powerful a great community, culture, and tradition can be. I think a lot of communities, businesses, organizations, and teams strive to be like Grand Forks and UND but very few achieve it. UND is a special place. I feel privileged to have been a part of it.”

 

Manitoba Moose-Jack Roslovic

Columbus, OH native Jack Roslovic  was drafted by the Winnipeg Jets in the 1st round in 2015. A center and right wing, he has played in multiple leagues over the years.Jack scored 52 points during his two years  in 59 USHL games with the USA National Team Development Program.

Even though he is only 19 Roslovic plays a very physical game with an offensive edge and has great foot speed.

Currently playing for the Manitoba Moose, I had the opportunity to watch him play and get to talk with him after the game.

When asking why he decided to sign this year instead of returning to Miami University. He thought it was the best for his development and that the Jets could do wonders for his career.

Over the summer, Roslovic worked on getting bigger, faster and stronger. I asked him what he thinks he needs to work on to make it to the next level, he said he just needs to work the systems and listen to the coaching staff.

We also talked briefly about his time at Oxford and what he would miss most, the guys and the brotherhood he felt when he was there.

I asked him what player past or present that he models his game after and his response was no one. He studies as many players as he can so that he can combine parts of their game and develop his own style.

Hockey Media Day- Ryan “Bob” Anderson

I got the chance to meetup with Ryan Anderson, known to the team as Bob. Now a sophomore has made waves.He made the team as a walk on last season and earned spots on both the Dean’s list (Fall 15) and then the President’s Honor Roll (Spring 16). He also received the Tom Hoghaug Memorial Scholarship, which is given to freshman who shows initiative, character and responsibility.

After playing in juniors for 2014-2015 season, he was ready to “Hang up the skates”. Anderson won the same amount of games Tomek did in the 14-15 season. Bob had been in contact with  UND’s coaches and the week before school started got a phone call about an opportunity to walk on because of an injury to Tomek.

Before coming to UND, Anderson had played in the NAHL for the Wilderness, he said that playing there gave him a lot of experience because he had the opportunity to play a lot of games.

Ryan is majoring in Clinical Lab Science and was inspired by some friends he knew working in the Roseau hospital lab, where he grew up. He also wanted to be able to finish in four years.

Anderson takes inspiration from a few past University of North Dakota goaltenders, such as Jean-Philippe Lamoureux and Aaron Dell. This year he would like to practice hard and be ready at any time, should he need to step into the net. Ryan thought that Brock Boeser has the most accurate shot, while Tucker Poolman has the hardest shot.