By Hayden Cogswell
The Colorado College hockey team dropped both matches this past weekend to reigning national champions The University of Minnesota at Duluth in CC’s home Broadmoor World Arena. The losses fall right before an important weekend against rivals Denver University in the Gold Pan matchup.
On Friday, Feb. 28, the Tigers took to the ice against the Bulldogs, hoping to take a win from the back to back national champions. The Tigers fought back from an early 2-0 deficit to tie the game in the 13th minute of the second period. Chris Wilkie ’20 turned in a pass from Alex Berardinelli ’20, scoring the first goal and halving the deficit in the 15th minute. Less than two minutes later, Jack Gates ’21 deflected a shot from graduate student Andrew Gaus into the Minnesota net. With a great rally by the Tigers to get back into the game and the score all tied up, victory looked to be a possibility.
However, with 3:18 left in the second period, Wilkie received a penalty that gave Minnesota the chance to score the go-ahead goal, making the score 3-2. The Bulldogs would go on to hold that lead and add another goal in the third period to win the contest 4-2.
“I think what happened against Minnesota was a combination of mental mistakes and getting outworked,” said Berardinelli.
The second contest fared no better for the Tigers. Nick Halloran ’20 found the net in the third period for his 11th goal of the season in what proved to be a disappointing night as the Tigers went 0-2 to Minnesota.
“We had some bad bounces and simple errors,” said Halloran. “They were costly against a team that has won back to back national championships.”
However, the Tigers will look to prep for the upcoming matches against rival DU. The emphasis in the week leading up to the match will be on focusing for the entire match and fighting every second on the ice.
“This week in practice we are working on battling and competing for pucks,” Berardinelli said. “It is important that we are a hard team to play against at every end of the ice.”
The first match on Friday, March 6 will be senior night, the culmination of four years of hard work for CC’s four graduating seniors.
“It’s going to be pretty emotional honestly,” Halloran said. “Four years has gone by so quick with great memories in and out of the Broadmoor.”
This season has seen strong performances from the class of 2020, most notably from Wilkie, who has a NCHC leading 21 goals in the season. His teammates were quick to point out his contributions to the team’s success.
“Chris is obviously having a great year so far and has been a really big part of our success,” said Berardinelli in praise of his teammate.
Senior night will bring heightened emotions from both fans and players alike as CC looks to take home the Gold Pan trophy. Let’s get out there and support our Tigers.