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Avalanche Farm Report: Dec. 14

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche
Spotlight On: Brad Malone

After posting career-highs in goals (11), assists (14) and points (25) in 43 games during his junior season, Avalanche prospect Brad Malone could be on his way to topping those numbers during his senior campaign at the University of North Dakota.

Just under halfway through the 2010-11 schedule, Malone ranks fourth on the Fighting Sioux’s scoring chart with 16 points (5g/11a) in 19 games for a career-best 0.84 points-per-game.

Those numbers were bolstered by a big performance this past weekend as North Dakota swept Minnesota State. Malone recorded three assists in a 4-3 win on Friday and then netted the game-winning goal in Saturday’s 4-2 triumph. The 6-foot-2, 207-pound center is now riding a four-game point streak, during which he’s totaled three goals and five assists.

If Malone does indeed set career-highs in all three major scoring categories, it would simply be continuing a trend. The Miramichi, N.B. native has improved upon his goal, assist and point totals each season he’s been on campus, from a three-point (1g/2a) freshman campaign to a 17-point (5g/12a) sophomore season and moving forward.
Lake Erie Monsters
Colorado’s American Hockey League affiliate started off the week by setting a franchise record. Even though the Monsters dropped a 3-2 shootout decision to Abbotsford last Tuesday – with Matthew Ford and Ryan Stoa scoring goals and John Grahame making 35 stops – they set a franchise record by picking up a point in their sixth straight game.

That streak was snapped the following night in a rematch with Abbotsford. Jason Bacashihua stopped 33-of-34 shots in the contest, but the Monsters couldn’t muster a goal in a 1-0 blanking.

Lake Erie also fell on Saturday, dropping a 7-4 decision to Toronto. Julian Talbot scored twice in the loss and both Curtis Fraser and Luke Walker added goals.

The Monsters ended the week on a high note Sunday, scoring five unanswered goals to down Houston, 5-2. Stoa found the back of the net twice and Walker, Travis Gawryletz and Tom Zanoski chipped in with a goal apiece. Bacashihua made 25 saves to pick up his eighth victory of the season.

Tulsa Oilers
The Oilers won all three of their games last week and have now extended their winning streak to six games overall.

Tulsa started off with a 4-1 victory over Rapid City last Tuesday, with Harrison Reed scoring twice. The Oilers then pulled out a 5-1 win over Texas on Friday night behind 30 saves from Trevor Cann. Reed also picked up an assist in the contest.

The Oilers ended the week by topping Wichita, 7-4. Reed recorded a goal and an assist in the win and currently ranks third on the team’s scoring chart with 23 points (10g/13a) in 21 games.

-Boston University goalie Kieran Millan made 37 saves Wednesday to help the Terriers earn a 5-4 win against Northeastern. He then came on in relief Saturday and stopped 11-of-12 shots in a 4-1 loss to Rensselaer (a no decision for Millan). The netminder has a 5-2-5 record with a .912 save percentage and a 2.85 goals-against average in 14 appearances.

-Minnesota’s Kent Patterson was named the WCHA Co-Defensive Player of the Week. The netminder stopped 37 shots to lead the Gophers to a 3-2 triumph over WCHA rival Minnesota Duluth on Friday evening. He then made 41 saves during Sunday’s rematch, which ended in a 2-2 tie. In 12 appearances, Patterson has posted a 7-2-2 record with a .917 save percentage and a 2.57 goals-against average.

-Luke Moffatt was held without a point as the University of Michigan topped Michigan State, 5-0, on Saturday during the “Big Chill at the Big House.” The outdoor contest held at Michigan Stadium drew a world-record crowd for a hockey game with 113,411 fans in attendance.

-Stefan Elliott scored in all three of Saskatoon’s games last week to run his goal-scoring streak to four games. The defenseman netted a power-play goal last Tuesday in a 3-0 blanking of Prince George, recorded a goal and an assist Friday during a 5-4 overtime win over Everett and then added another tally in a 4-2 triumph over Kootenay on Sunday. With 30 points (12g/18a) in 31 games, Elliott is tied for third among WHL blueliners in points and ranks second in goals.

-Seattle’s Calvin Pickard suffered a loss in his lone game last week. The netminder made 44 saves on Friday, but the Thunderbirds fell to Tri-City by a 4-1 count. Pickard is currently at Team Canada’s National Junior Team Camp – along with fellow Avalanche prospects Tyson Barrie and Joey Hishon – in hopes of earning a roster spot on Canada’s entry in the 2011 IIHF World Junior Championship.

-Portland defenseman Troy Rutkowski scored his fifth goal of the season during a 9-3 loss to Spokane on Wednesday. Rutkowski added a pair of assists on Friday during Portland’s 4-1 win over Prince George and currently leads all team blueliners with 24 points (5g/19a) through 35 games.

-Kitchener’s Brandon Maxwell won his first two starts last week before suffering an overtime loss. Maxwell began the week with a 29-save performance during a 4-3 victory over Guelph last Tuesday. Three nights later, the netminder turned aside 31 shots as the Rangers topped Owen Sound, 6-2. Maxwell ended the week with a 28-save performance in a 4-3 loss to Owen Sound, which moved his record to 14-5-2-0 on the season.
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