Welcome to the first edition of the Mountain West Conference on Ice. This is a weekly recap of all the action from around the MWC hockey teams. While not all schools in the Mountain West participate in hockey, a good amount of them are members of the ACHA, which stands for the American Collegiate Hockey Association. This is an organization that is responsible for collegiate hockey play across the nation.
So before we dive right into the action, I wanted to give a quick crash course for those of you who aren’t too familiar with hockey. There is a few key terms I want to cover before we get into the teams. I will be highlighting three major stat leaders for each team. The first stat is goals. Pretty self explanatory there, this is the team’s leader is goals scored. The second is the team leader in assists. This the player with the most assists or pass that lead to goals. Finally, the last stat is points, this is a combination of goals and points and give us the leading offensive producer for each team. Goals against average (GAA) is the average mount of goal a goalie gives up per game and Save Percentage (SV%) is the percentage of shot a goal tender will save on average in a game. And one last thing, there are really only three positions in hockey, a forward, a defense men, and finally the goalie. I will be referring to a forward as (F), defense men as (D), and goalies (G). But without further delay, let’s get to the action!
Air Force: (Division 1, Atlantic Hockey Conference)
The Falcons have had a tough start to the season so far. Three games into the season, they have yet to put a game in the win column. Their last contest was a loss to Colorado College, the final score was 1-6. It’s not only the record that as been sub-par this season, but the offense as well. Through the first 3 games, Air Force as only produced 4 goals. In contrast they have given up 12 goals to their opponents. But they look to turn things around this weekend as they head into a two game series against Canisius College, who sports a record of (1-1). So far this season, the leader in points for Air Force is a tie between F Evan Feno and D Matt Koch who both have 2 points. Forward Matt Serratore and Evan Giesler share the team lead for goals at 1 a piece. And starting goal tender Bil Christopoulos has had a start to forget so far. In 2 games play, he has 9 goals against, a 5.00 goals against average, and have a save percentage of .816%. The Falcons looks to turn their season around starting with this weekend’s series.
Boise State University: (ACHA Division 2, West Region)
Boise is off to a hot start this year! The Broncos are (6-2-1) and are hitting on all cylinders offensively. Their last game was a win against Washington State, where the final score of the game was 14-1. This impressive goal total is nothing new to Boise this year. They’ve score a total of 61 goals already this season and they’re only 9 games in. F Micheal Carranza leads the team in both goals (10) and points (20). Zachary Biebuyck leads the Broncos in assists with 14. But he’s not alone in double digits assists, with 3 of his fellow teammates also posting 10 or more assists. Starting goalie Kyler Ayers has held up his end of the bargain so far. He currently owns a record of 3-1, with a GGA of 2.52 and a save percentage of .920. Boise looks to the keep the ball rolling, as they open up a weekend series against Western Washington University this upcoming Saturday.
Colorado State University: (ACHA Division 2, West Region)
The Rams are 4 games into their season, and so far they’ve found themselves on the losing end more than they would like. Posting a record of (1-3) so far, it’s been anything but smooth sailing for them. Their latest game was a 6-2 lost to Dallas-Baptist University. Colorado started out strong in their season open against Colorado School of Mines, blowing them out 7-1. But since this opening win, they haven’t been able to find a way back to the winner’s circle. They hope to get their second win of the season tomorrow in a contest against The University of Colorado. Their offensive leaders so far this season are F Sean Patten with 3 goals and 4 points total and F Liam Burns and D Colton Hellman sharing the lead in assists with 3 a piece. CSU currently has 4 active goal-tenders on their roster. Three of the four have seen game time so far this season. Dayn Pyykkonen has a record of 1-1, with a 4.00 GAA and 9.14 SV%. Davis Kitagawa is 0-1, with a 3.00 GAA and .900 SV%. Lastly, Ted Bunton has posted a 0-1 record, with a 4.67 GAA and .881 SV%
San Diego State University: (ACHA Division 2, West Region)
So far this season, SDSU is (2-2). Coming off a 4-3 win in their last game against The University of San Diego, the Aztecs looks to build off this momentum in their upcoming game against UCLA this Friday. Their offense certainly hasn’t lost any momentum this season, through 4 games, SDSU has scored 18 goals. Highlighted by a 13 goal performance in their game against SDU on October 12th. Patrick Miller currently leads the team in points with 7 and goals with 3. Miller is also tied with teammate Aaron Mayer in assist, with each player posting 4 total. Like CSU, San Diego has had 3 men man the crease for them so far this season. Matthew Burbage is currently 0-2, with a 2.55 GAA and 9.26 SV%. Nick Ilvento is 1-0 and owns a 2.81 GAA and 8.97 SV%. And rounding out the group is Austin Hathcoat who is 1-0, with a 6.15 GAA and .667 SV%.
San Jose State University: (ACHA Division 2, West Region)
The Spartans are through 6 games in their season and so far, they’re (4-2-1). Not a bad start. They are coming off a two game series against CSU- Long Beach where they came away with one loss and a tie. Not the worst of outcomes, but a win would have been more desirable than a tie. But the tie aside, SJSU has been steady so far this season. They started off well with a 2 game series sweep against San Diego State University. They followed that series up with back to back loses against USC, then found the win column against in 2 straight games against Santa Clara University. Next on the schedule for San Jose is a contest against California, followed by another 2 game set against USC. Their offensive leaders so far this season have been F Daniel Barry, who is currently pacing the team with 14 points, 7 goals, and 7 assists. He leads the team in all 3 categories. Has for net-minders, San Jose has played two so far. Edward Berlin has a 3-2 record with a 3.14 GAA and .922 SV%. And teammate Alan Maupas is 1-0, with a 2.00 GAA and .895 SV%.
University of New Mexico: (ACHA Divivsion 3, Pacific Region)
The Lobos are (5-2-1) so far in their 2018 campaign and they’ve set the tone with their offense. 49 total goals scored by UNM this season and the pace has been unbelievable. A great example of this is their last series against Texas Tech University. The Lobos outscored Texas 30-2 in two games. Scoring 19 goals in the first game, and 11 in the second. The Lobos look to keep the ball rolling against Northern Arizona University, as they head on the road for a two game set. F Nate Taglialegami leads the team in points with 19, and in assists with 8. F Jarrod Ronquillo leads the team in goals with an incredible total of 17. The two goalies for UNM so far have pulled their weight for the sqaud. Nathan Russell is currently a perfect 3-0, with a 3.00 GAA and .906 SV%. Jame Bostian has also seen some playing time. He sits at 2-2. with a 2.56 GAA and .902 SV%.
University of Nevada-Las Vegas: (ACHA Division 1)
The lone division 1 team in the MWC, the Rebels are off to a great start this season. They currently own a record of (5-1) with 29 goals scored so far this season. UNLV is coming off a 2 game series against Utah that saw them go 1-1. Winning the first game 6-4, then dropping the following contest 4-1. Their next opponent on the calendar is ASU, a team in which they’ve already taken on in a 2 game series earlier in the season. They swept the Sun Devils, winning 5-3 in the first game, and 4-2 in the second. F Cody Williams leads the team with 13 points and 8 goals. Teammate and fellow F Joe Kaszupski leads the team in assist with 8. UNLV has used 2 goalies so far this season. Jesse Gordichuk is 2-1, with a 3.02 GAA and .842 SV%. Ben Giebrecht has also seen playing time this year and has made the most of it. He is currently 3-0, with a 2.00 GAA and .778 SV%.
Same time next week? We’ll recap the action from this weekend and also give a more in-depth look at one of the teams.