UW finishes 3rd at WCHA finals

first_imgST. PAUL, Minn. — The path to the NCAA tournament was simple for the University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team: two Final Five wins and they’re in.But a 3-0 loss to Denver Friday ended the Badgers’ hopes for a Final Five title, dashing their NCAA postseason chances in the process. When the tournament field was chosen Sunday, UW was the first team out.Standing in the way of Wisconsin and a date in the Final Five championship game was the Denver Pioneers and goaltender Marc Cheverie, who blanked the Badgers by stopping all 42 shots en route to a 3-0 win.“Tonight was just a solid game by them,” Wisconsin head coach Mike Eaves said of Denver. “I thought they played an extremely intelligent game. They played well as a team. They played hard. They won a lot of battles, and got some timely goals tonight.”The loss to the Pioneers was a familiar feeling for the Badgers, who were swept in the season series against Denver, losing all five games.It was a familiar cast of characters as well that did UW in on Friday. Brian Gifford, Kyle Ostrow and Patrick Wiercioch all netted goals in the victory.For Wiercioch, his power play goal 6:01 into the third period was his tenth point of the season against the Badgers — a team he nearly played for this season.Wiercioch originally gave a verbal commitment to Wisconsin to play as a defenseman, but because of UW’s depth on defense, he would have had to wait a year before cracking the lineup. An opportunity to play immediately at Denver arose, so Wiercioch took it and hasn’t looked back. The freshman finished the season with 12 goals and 21 assists — and a good portion of his scoring came against the Badgers.“Our team generally has been playing well against this team,” Wiercioch said. “They’re a good team, and ever since we’ve played them back in October, we knew it would be big series coming down to the end.”DU’s Brian Gifford started the scoring late in the first period. After skating across the UW blueline, Gifford wristed a shot that crept over the left shoulder of Wisconsin goalie Shane Connelly and in for a 1-0 lead.In the second, Ostrow gave the Pioneers a 2-0 edge. Ostrow took a brilliant pass from teammate Luke Salazar and then split Wisconsin’s Sean Dolan and Jake Gardiner on his way to the net.“One of the things we certainly wanted to do is be able to get our transition game functioning and functioning properly,” Denver head coach George Gwozdecky said. “I thought that was part of our success today.”Wiercioch’s shot in the third period on the power play from the left point found its way through traffic and beat Connelly for the final goal of the game.The story of the day for Denver, though, was sophomore Cheverie, who pitched the shutout by stopping all 42 Badger shots.“This is a goaltender’s tournament,” Gwozdecky said of the Final Five. “Goaltenders are going to win it for you.”Indeed, Cheverie did everything he could to make sure his Pioneers advanced to the championship game. And despite firing 42 times on net, the shots the Badgers took didn’t make Cheverie work particularly hard.“He did his part,” UW defenseman Jamie McBain said. “We gave him that first shot, but a lot of the time their defense — give them credit, they blocked our forwards out.”“Good teams have to tighten up in the playoffs if you want to have success,” Cheverie said. “That’s what our team’s been doing. … I give all the credit to them. They make my job a lot easier.”Following the loss, Wisconsin advanced to the consolation game Saturday against WCHA regular-season champion North Dakota. With the NCAA tournament no longer an option, the Badgers seemingly had little to play for.But Wisconsin certainly didn’t look like a team playing in its last game of the season. UW jumped on UND three times in the second period, taking the third-place game by a 4-1 final.Early on, though, it appeared as if Wisconsin was ready for its season to be over.UW fired just six shots on net in the first period to the Fighting Sioux’s 17. North Dakota forward Ryan Duncan — the 2007 Hobey Baker award winner — put his team up 7:45 into the first with a goal from the doorstep. It appeared as if Connelly had the left side of the net sealed up, but Duncan found an opening and slipped the puck in for a 1-0 UND lead.“It wasn’t one of his classics,” North Dakota head coach Dave Hakstol said. “He showed good, quick hands and he pulled it from below the goal line and stuffed it in. It was a good goal for him and it got us off to a good start.”But during the first and second periods, a switch was flipped on in the Wisconsin locker room.The Badgers came out in the second playing their most aggressive hockey of the weekend, peppering Sioux goalie Brad Eidsness with 25 second-period shots. Just 3:37 into the second, UW forward Andy Bohmbach tied things up when he poked a loose puck in the crease past Eidsness.Later in the first, freshman Jordy Murray scored what proved to be the game-winner on a great hustle play by teammate Michael Davies. After Eidsness casually left the puck behind his own goal, Davies raced in and collected the puck, eventually finding Murray cutting to the net for a one-timer and a 2-1 Badger lead.“I think everyone stepped up and realized we can still win this game,” Connelly said. “We were embarrassed in the first period, just like we were kind of embarrassed yesterday.”Defenseman Brendan Smith added a power play goal with under a minute to go in the second. Smith slapped one from the right faceoff circle that trickled under the leg pad of Eidsness and in.Wisconsin struck again on the power play in the third, as Murray notched his second goal of the game, this time on the man-advantage 17:04 into the final frame.The Badgers were 2-for-7 on the power play, while North Dakota struggled with the man-advantage, failing to convert on nine power play attempts.“We had some great power plays this weekend,” Hakstol said. “I thought today we were just more sporadic in our performance on the power play.”The 4-1 victory was a bittersweet one for Wisconsin — especially for seniors Connelly and Tom Gorowsky. Not only was it the final game of the 2008-2009 season for UW, but it was the final game of Connelly and Gorowsky’s careers.“It’s awesome. You never want to end on a loss,” Connelly said. “This is a unique situation to end on a win like this, and to get a performance from the team that showed character coming out after a disappointing day yesterday. … For me, it’s gratifying playing against a great team like North Dakota and getting the win here in the Final Five.”last_img read more

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Lakers CEO Jeanie Buss talks business (and championships) at team’s high-tech El Segundo home

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersLater, while introducing Buss to the crowd of roughly 500 members of the El Segundo business community and civic leaders, Soon-Shiong called her an “inspiration to women.”PreviousLakers owner Jeanie Buss, center, listens to comments during the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)Lakers owner Jeanie Buss chats before the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. Buss is this years winner of the Champions of Business award. The event and dinner and awards are hosted by the City of El Segundo and the El Segundo Devolopment Advisory Council. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsLakers owner Jeanie Buss received the Champions of Business award at the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. The event and dinner and awards are hosted by the City of El Segundo and the El Segundo Development Advisory Council. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)Al Keahi, left, and Barbara Voss deliver remarks during the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)Lakers owner Jeanie Buss, center, shares a laugh with Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong during the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. Buss is this years winner of the Champions of Business award and Soon-Shiong won the award in 2017. The event and dinner and awards are hosted by the City of El Segundo and the El Segundo Devolpment Advisory Council. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)Lakers owner Jeanie Buss, center, listens to comments during the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)NextShow Caption1 of 5Lakers owner Jeanie Buss, center, listens to comments during the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)ExpandAfter working for the organization since the age of 19, the 55-year-old took over as controlling owner of the Lakers from her father, the late Jerry Buss, who bought the franchise in 1979. In her brief remarks, Buss thanked the city and the community at large for the award.“I want to thank everybody for coming and enjoying our home,” she said. “Thank you for making us feel so connected to your community.”And then a few words about that certain someone coming to the Lakers next season, LeBron James.“About the championship, I can’t make any promises, but I believe in Magic and that’s who’s leading us,” said Buss, referring to Magic Johnson who took over as president of basketball operations last year and who’s been credited with convincing James to sign with L.A. Shortly before Los Angeles Lakers CEO Jeanie Buss received the Champion of Business Award from the City of El Segundo Wednesday night, cancer pioneer and new Los Angeles Times owner Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong approached her.Reporters around Buss were all told to keep the questions to the new 120,000-square-foot Lakers training facility, where the event was being held, and the booming El Segundo business climate.But there was a different championship – that of the NBA – on the mind of Soon-Shiong, a die-hard Lakers fan since the 1980s.“I told them you promised us a championship,” Soon-Shiong said, laughing. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Lakers owner Jeanie Buss, center, shares a laugh with Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong during the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. Buss is this years winner of the Champions of Business award and Soon-Shiong won the award in 2017. The event and dinner and awards are hosted by the City of El Segundo and the El Segundo Devolpment Advisory Council. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)In addition to honoring Buss, the city handed awards for Entrepreneur of the Year to Mike Mothner, founder and CEO of Wpromote, a digital marketing firm, and the Big Idea Award to Beyond Meat, which manufactures meat substitute products from a lab in El Segundo.Los Angeles Times’ Executive Editor Norman Pearlstine gave the keynote address.More than the awards and the speeches, however, it was the energy in the room especially among elected officials and civic leaders under the backdrop of the Lakers new training facility that could really be felt Wednesday night.The center features a plyo-metric training area, weight room, on-court video display technology, state-of-the-art conditioning room with whirlpools and a cryogenic chamber as well as a commercial kitchen with on-staff nutritionist.Buss said the franchise looked at other areas but decided to stay in El Segundo, down the street from the previous training center it shared with the Los Angeles Kings, for various reasons. The new center is roughly three times the size of the old space and puts the Lakers among the top echelon in the NBA in terms of training facilities, Buss said.“With the success we’ve had in El Segundo in terms of winning five championships since we’ve been here and finding a City Council and business leaders, who were supportive of progress and growth, we really were of like mind,” Buss said.Lakers owner Jeanie Buss received the Champions of Business award at the El Segundo 2018 Champions of Business celebration and award ceremony at the Lakers practice facility in El Segundo on Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2018. The event and dinner and awards are hosted by the City of El Segundo and the El Segundo Development Advisory Council. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)El Segundo has been attracting a stunning number of new start-up firms as well as such big investors as the Lakers, LA Times and Soon-Shiong’s new cancer center. Since 2014, commercial vacancies in the city have dropped by 10 percent.“There is so much going on that we’re excited about,” said Barbara Voss, Economic Development Director.Mayor Drew Boyles, who’s lived in El Segundo for 24 years, said the change has been “unbelievable.”“I’ve seen El Segundo really transform,” Boyles said. “I think El Segundo is finally being viewed in a different light, which is true innovation.”Related Articles While El Segundo encompasses just five square miles with 17,000 residents, roughly 55,000 people commute into the city for work.Mayor Pro Tem Carol Pirsztuk said the city has tried to foster a welcoming environment toward business with low license taxes and other incentives.“When you come to El Segundo you are not just a business and partner, you are a family member,” Pirsztuk said. Bruce Flanders, voice of the Long Beach Grand Prix, dies at 74 center_img Coronavirus hospitalizations continue to decline in LA County 2,000-plus more LA County cases reported, but coronavirus backlog still anticipated from state It’s official: Kamala Harris named Joe Biden’s vice presidential running mate Pink’s reopens, proving every hot dog must have its day last_img read more

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