March 23, 2012
March 23, 2012
Boston University Quotes
Pre-Regional Press Conference
Xcel Energy Center - St. Paul, Minn.
Head Coach Jack Parker
“We’re very happy and excited about being in the national tournament again. We’re very excited about playing the Gophers in the national tournament again. We’re certainly excited about playing in this building. It’s a fabulous building to participate in and a fabulous building to watch a game in. I’ve been here on a number of occasions and it’s a great place to be. This is a pretty tough field, but’s it’s also a great environment to be in. We’ve gone through a long haul to get here and we’ve had a lot of ups and downs over the course of the year. This team has been very resilient and has worked hard to keep going and a lot of it has to do with our senior leadership.”
On his team’s power play:
“In general our power play has been a big part of our success all year long up until our recent outage, so to speak, when we haven’t gotten a (power-play goal) in our last two or three games, so we’re trying to turn that around. Penalty kill and special teams are always huge in these types of games, so we’d like to stay out of the box and take advantage of any power-play opportunities we get.”
On the West Region:
“I thought we were going to be in this field the night before (it was selected)…It was pretty simple to pick, I thought, and when it came out on Sunday, people said, ‘That’s a tough field, that’s a tough field. There’s some brand-name hockey teams out here and some brand name coaches out here some great history here.’ It is, but, Worcester’s a tough field, and Bridgeport’s a tough field, and Green Bay’s a tough field. There’s a lot of great hockey teams. There’s six or seven school not in this tournament that could be considered a team that could win this tournament.”
“I think it looks like it’s a tough field because it’s Minnesota, BU, and North Dakota—what we call out east brand name hockey teams…I don’t think anyone knows how good Western Michigan is except the teams in their own league…Playing the Gophers in their own backyard is a tough draw and playing North Dakota anywhere is a tough draw…This is quite a field with great balance and whoever gets the Frozen Four is going to have to earn it and no one’s going to earn it more than anyone else.”
Boston University Player Quotes
On being back in his home state of Minnesota:
“It feels great. Going out east, you never expect to make it to your home state. We don’t see too many of the western teams. When I saw the possibility of coming out here, I had my fingers crossed.”
On talking to his brother, Minnesota Duluth’s Jack Connolly:
“We talked about how ironic the situation was that I was going to Minnesota, and he was headed out to Massachusetts. We reminisce about that a bit and the potential of seeing each other in Tampa.”
On responding to off-ice issues, particularly players leaving the team:
“It is a unique situation. You just have to deal with it. There is nothing you can do. The message we told the people was, ‘It is behind us.’ We put ourselves in a good situation to do something special. We have plenty of good character guys in that room and guys have stepped up.”
On making it back to the NCAAs:
“It is obviously exciting to get to play against top quality schools again. Missing the tournament the last couple of years was a big disappointment for the team, knowing that is a main goal of ours. It is tough to relate to freshman year because we know we were going to be in the tournament for so long. This year, we had to battle a lot harder through adversity. (Just) being here is not what we are here for, so hopefully this weekend goes well and we can make it to Tampa.”
On facing Minnesota goalie Kent Patterson, who is also a draft pick of the Colorado Avalanche:
“It is a unique situation. We were fortunate enough to meet this summer at the Colorado Avalanche’s Prospect Camp. He is a great person. It adds a little bit to the game, but at the same time, I am focused on how our team plays. It is not that much of a distraction.”
On if he plays better in big games:
“It is hard to really gauge what makes me play better. I think it is my defense and teammates around me. Obviously, being our senior year we are even a bit more focused and we have a good team this year. Goaltending is a big part of winning, so I have to make sure I step up to the plate and do my job.”
Blake Wheeler Named Jets Captain
A three-year letter winner with the Gophers (2006-08), Wheeler totaled 96 points (42 goals, 54 assists) in 127 career games.
Gopher Hockey Heads to Las Vegas
Minnesota will play North Dakota in the 2018 U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Game at the Orleans Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, Oct. 27, 2018.
Gophers Mourn Mike Pearson
A native of Fort Frances, Ontario, Pearson was a three-year letter winner and a captain for Minnesota.