NCAA hockey: Getting to know St. Cloud State

Freshman forward Veeti Miettinen is St. Cloud State's leading scorer with 10 goals, including a team-best five power-play tallies, and 13 assists.

Freshman forward Veeti Miettinen is St. Cloud State's leading scorer with 10 goals, including a team-best five power-play tallies, and 13 assists.

St. Cloud State will take on Boston University in the second game of the NCAA men’s hockey tournament’s Northeast Regional at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at Times Union Center.

The Huskies, the No. 2 seed in the regional, play in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference. They finished 15-9-0 in the conference, and are 17-9-0 overall. They finished second in the NCHC, and lost the conference tournament championship game to North Dakota.

St. Cloud State is making its third straight NCAA appearance, and 15th overall.

Here are five things to know about St. Cloud State.

PROGRAM HISTORY

St. Cloud State started hockey in the 1931-32 season. The Huskies were an NCAA Division II/III squad until the 1987-88 season, when they moved up to Division I.

The Huskies played as an independent team from 1987-90, then joined the Western Collegiate Hockey Association. In 2013-14, St. Cloud State joined the NCHC.

In just their second season at Division I, the Huskies made the NCAA Tournament.

HERB BROOKS

Brooks, the legendary coach of the 1980 “Miracle On Ice” U.S. men’s hockey team, became coach of the Huskies for the 1986-87 season, the program’s final season at Division III.

He guided the team to a 25-10-1 record and a third-place finish in the NCAA Division III tournament. After the season, Brooks left St. Cloud State to become head coach of the Minnesota North Stars.

The arena the Huskies play in is named after Brooks, who died in an automobile accident on Aug. 11, 2003.

HOBEY BAKER WINNER

The Huskies have had one Hobey Baker Award winner, which goes to the top player in college hockey.

Center Drew LeBlanc captured the award in 2013. In 42 games, LeBlanc had 13 goals and 37 assists.

FROZEN FOUR

The Huskies have made the NCAA Frozen Four once. They lost to Quinnipiac 4-1 in the 2013 semifinals.

NICE TO SEE YOU AGAIN

St. Cloud State is coming to the NCAAs in Albany for the third time. The sixth-seeded Huskies lost to BU 5-3 in the first round of the 2000 East Regional at then-Pepsi Arena (now Times Union Center). St. Cloud State fell behind 3-0 in the first period and never recovered.

The Huskies returned in 2008 as the second seed in the East. However, third-seeded Clarkson defeated the Huskies 2-1 in the semifinals.

St. Cloud State has also played games at RPI and Union. The Huskies were swept in a two-game series by the Engineers Nov. 21-22, 2003, by scores of 3-2 and 2-1. They split a two-game series at Union Oct. 24-25, 2014. Union won the opener 5-1, and St. Cloud took the next game 3-2.

Categories: -The Daily Gazette, College Sports, Parting Schotts, Sports

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