Men’s Hockey Set To Begin 2014-15 Season At MIAC Showcase This Weekend

Posted on October 30th, 2014 by

St. Peter, Minn. – The Gustavus Adolphus men’s hockey team will begin its 2014-15 campaign this weekend when it travels to the Schwan Super Rink in Blaine, Minnesota for the annual Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Men’s Hockey Showcase.  The MIAC Showcase will be held Friday, Oct. 31 through Sunday, Nov. 2, offering MIAC fans an exciting, season-opening preview of the conference.

The Gusties will begin the season on Friday, Oct. 31 with a 7:00 p.m. game against Bethel University in Rink 2.  They will then conclude the weekend on Sunday, Nov. 2 with a 3:30 p.m. game against St. Olaf College in Rink 4.

MIAC Showcase Website

2014-15 MIAC Men’s Hockey Season Preview

GUSTAVUS LINKS
Game Notes | Roster | Schedule/Results | 2013-14 Statistics

GUSTAVUS COACHING STAFF… Head Coach Brett Petersen is in his 15th season at the helm of the Gustavus men’s hockey program. Petersen has compiled a 198-148-32 overall record in his 14 seasons at Gustavus. His 198 wins at Gustavus ranks second behind legendary coach Don Roberts. He has been named MIAC Coach of the Year twice in his tenure, once in 2001-02 and again in 2009-10.

Senior captain Tyler Lapic is Gustauvs's top returning scorer from last season.

Senior captain Tyler Lapic is Gustauvs’s top returning scorer from last season.

Within MIAC play, Gustavus holds a record 124-79-21 during the Petersen era. The Gusties have earned a trip to the MIAC Playoffs 13 straight seasons and have advanced to the MIAC Playoff Championship a total of six times under Petersen. Since the turn of the century, Gustavus has qualified for the NCAA Division III Tournament three times in 2009, 2010, and 2012. The Gusties advanced all the way to the NCAA Championship in 2009 where they fell to Neumann 4-1 at Herb Brooks Arena in Lake Placid, N.Y.

Petersen, a Roseville, Minn. native, received his Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from the University of Denver in 1992 and his Master of Science degree in athletic administration in 2000 from St. Cloud State.

Former men’s hockey standout David Martinson is in his third season as the assistant men’s hockey coach at Gustavus. A 2010 graduate and one of the most decorated hockey players to don a three crowned sweater, Martinson is a native of St. Louis Park, Minn. After being named the MIAC Player of the Year and earning All-America honors twice during his playing career, Martinson continued his education at the Bowling Green State University where he served as a graduate assistant for the men’s hockey team. In the fall of 2012, David received his masters of education in sport administration.

GUSTAVUS EMBARKS ON 73RD SEASON OF MEN’S HOCKEY… The Gustavus men’s hockey team is in its 73rd season of existence. One of the storied programs in collegiate hockey, Gustavus has compiled an all-time record of 849-618-68 overall and 563-424-42 in the MIAC. The Gusties have won 14 MIAC Championships and earned a place in the NCAA Division III Tournament six times, which includes a runner-up finish in 2009.

Gustavus first recognized a men’s hockey team in 1937 when then Director of Physical Education George Myrum became interested in the sport and raised the funds to sponsor a team. The Gusties fell to Carleton in their first ever intercollegiate game in 1936. It would take until 1939, the first year Gustavus played on natural ice in the on-campus fieldhouse, for Gustavus to record the first victory in the program’s history.

LAST SEASON AT A GLANCE… The Gustavus men’s hockey team posted its best finish in the conference standings since the 2009-10 season and made it back to the MIAC Playoff Championship for the third straight year after what was the team’s seventh consecutive winning season. Gustavus finished second in the MIAC with 38 points after going 12-3-1 within conference play. After defeating Saint John’s 3-2 in the MIAC Playoff Semifinals at Don Roberts Ice Rink, the Gusties saw their season end with a 2-1 loss to St. Thomas in front of a capacity crowd at the St. Thomas Ice Arena in the MIAC Playoff Championship. Head Coach Brett Petersen’s club finished the year 16-7-4 overall, reaching the 15-win mark for the sixth straight season.

Gustavus had a strong showing in the MIAC’s postseason awards with three players taking home all-conference honors. Gusties featured on the 20-player All-Conference Team included senior forward Corey Leivermann (North Mankato, Minn.), sophomore goaltender John McLean (Eagan, Minn.), and senior forward Adam Smyth (Burnsville, Minn.). Smyth earned all-conference marks for the second straight year, while Leivermann and McLean were both first time recipients. Corey Leivermann shared the MIAC scoring title after scoring 19 points off a league-leading 12 goals and seven assists inside conference play.

Cory Ellis is one of eight battle tested seniors who have been to three straight MIAC Playoff Championships games.

Cory Ellis is one of eight battle tested seniors who have been to three straight MIAC Playoff Championships games.

CALLING ALL CAPTAINS… The 2014-15 Gustavus men’s hockey team will be led into the season by senior captains Jack Walsh (Mahtomedi, Minn.) and Tyler Lapic (New Prague, Minn.). In the 72-year history of Gustavus men’s hockey, Walsh and Lapic are the 87th and 88th student-athletes to earn the right of wearing a “C” on their Gustavus sweater. Jack Walsh is the program’s first two-time captain since Ross Ring-Jarvi ’12 served during the 2010-11 and 2011-12 seasons.

SENIOR LEADERSHIP… Eight student-athletes embark on their fourth and final season on the Gustavus men’s hockey team. Sam Smith (Vancouver, B.C), Jack Walsh, Tyler Lapic, Schyler Adams (New Prague, Minn.), Nate Paulsen (La Habra, Calif.), Andy Pearson (Burnsville, Minn.), Cory Ellis (St. Paul, Minn.), and Blake Schammel (Red Wing, Minn.) make up this year’s Golden Gustie seniors. All eight have been significant contributors to the program since coming to campus in the fall of 2011.

AROUND NORTH AMERICA… Gustavus’s 2014-15 roster features 28 players from six different states and one player from Canada. Within the United States, Minnesota (22), Alaska (1), California (1), North Dakota (1), Oklahoma (1), and Vermont (1) are represented by 27 players. Outside the U.S., the Canadian province of British Columbia is home to Sam Smith.

LETTERWINNERS AND FRESH FACES… Brett Petersen returned 20 letterwinners from a 2013-14 squad that went 16-7-4 overall (12-3-1 MIAC) and advanced to the MIAC Playoff Championship for the third consecutive season. To go along with his 20 returners, coach Petersen welcomes eight new players to the team. Five of the eight fresh faces are frosh while the other three spent last season on Gustavus’s junior varsity team. This season’s rookies include Jake McCann (Shoreview, Minn.), Jake Bushey (Duluth, Minn.), Conor Deal (Anchorage, Alaska), Tim Donohue (Bloomington, Minn.), and Isaak Tjaden (Eagan, Minn.). Sophomores Cameron Jackson (Lakeville, Minn.), Matt Petersen (Center City, Minn.), and Mason Wyman (Burnsville, Minn.) moved up to varsity after a season on JV. McCann, Deal, Donohue, and Wyman are forwards, Bushey, Jackson, and Petersen are defenseman, and Tjaden is a goaltender.

PRIOR EXPERIENCE… All 28 players on Gustavus’s roster previously played junior hockey before beginning their collegiate careers. Thirteen of this year’s Gusties are alums of the North American Hockey League (NAHL), while four played in the Superior International Junior Hockey League (SIJHL). The Eastern Junior Hockey League (EJHL), North American Tier III Hockey League (NA3HL), and Western States Hockey League (WSHL) are each represented by two players. The United States Hockey League (USHL), British Columbia Hockey League (BCHL), Central Canada Hockey League (CCHL), American West Hockey League (AWH L), and Minnesota Junior Hockey League (MNJHL) were all home to one future Gustie.

REPLACING LOST FIREPOWER… The biggest concern for the Gustavus men’s hockey team heading into the 2014-15 season is where its scoring will come from after graduating three of its top four scorers in Corey Leivermann ’14, Adam Smyth ’14, and Gustav Bengtson ’14. Leivermann led the team in scoring last season with 30 points off a team-best 18 goals and 12 assists, while Smyth finished next in line with 19 points (11G, 8A). Smyth, a two-time All-Conference honoree, played in 107 career games and logged 73 points (44G, 29A). With Bengtson’s 16 points added to Leivermann and Smyth’s totals, the current Gusties need to make up a loss of 34-percent of the team’s scoring. The Gusties finished last season with a goals per game scoring average of 2.89, ranking them fifth in the MIAC.

With 17 points off six goals and 11 assists, Tyler Lapic is the top returning scorer from a season ago. Fellow seniors Jack Walsh and Andy Pearson are next in line after they both reached double-figures with 15 (5G, 10A) and 11 points (2G, 9A), respectively. Walsh (80) and Pearson (79) have also suited up in more games than any current Gusties with a combined 159 games played between the pair.

Although goaltender John McLean won't be in action until December, the junior comes into the 2014-15 season Gustavus's lone returning All-Conference performer.

Although goaltender John McLean won’t be in action until December, the junior comes into the 2014-15 season Gustavus’s lone returning All-Conference performer.

BETWEEN THE PIPES… Gustavus returns to the ice with All-Conference goaltender John McLean (Jr., Eagan, Minn.), who at six-feet eight-inches – the tallest player in all divisions of NCAA Hockey – is hard to overlook at the end of the rink. Although he will miss the opening portion of the season as he recovers from a lower body injury suffered during the summer, McLean is coming a sophomore campaign that saw him log over 1,500 minutes and go 15-6-4 overall. He averaged 22.1 saves per game with a 1.97 goals against average (2nd/MIAC) and a .920 save percentage (.920). McLean was the first Gustavus goaltender in the last 20 years to finish the season with a goals against average under two.  His .920 save percentage was also the program’s best mark since he finished with a .923 save rate his rookie year. While McLean rehabs, sophomore Erik Johnson (Rice, Minn.) and freshman Isaak Tjaden (Northfield, Minn.) will lock down the crease. Johnson played in one game last season, earning the victory over Marian after stopping 23-of-25 shots.

ON THE BLUE LINE… Although defensive staples Alex Gallen and Joey Olson will be absent due to graduation, Gustavus returns four of its top six defensemen from a year ago. Seniors Nate Paulsen  and Sam Smith lead the unit 61 and 51 career games played, respectively. Sophomores Drew Aspinwall (Maple Grove, Minn.) and Jared Docken (Northfield, Minn.) were thrown into the fire as rookies last season with Aspinwall playing in all 27 games and Docken suiting up in 26. Paulsen and Aspinwall led Gustavus’s defenseman in scoring last season with eight points each, while Sam Smith turned in the best plus-minus of the group at +9. Gustavus ranked second in the league in team goals against average at 2.19.

THE LONG AND WINDING ROAD… To go along with the team’s standard 16 Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference contests, this season’s long and winding schedule features non-conference games against teams belonging to the MIAC, WIAC, NCHA, and NESCAC. In addition to non-league games against conference foes Bethel and St. Olaf this weekend at the MIAC Showcase, Gustavus will face UW-Stevens Point (Nov. 7) and UW-Stout (Nov. 8) of the WIAC, Lawrence (Nov. 29), Marian (Nov. 30), Finlandia (Jan. 9), and St. Scholastica (Jan. 10) of the NCHA, and Williams (Jan. 2) of the NESCAC. The Gusties will play 13 of its games at home at Don Roberts Ice Rink including non-conference bouts against Lawrence and Marian in the MIAC/NCHA Thanksgiving Showdown Nov. 29 and Nov. 30.

 

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