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Farm Report: Field Set for Frozen Four

by Aaron Lopez / Colorado Avalanche
The Lake Erie Monsters dropped a 6-5 overtime decision to the Syracuse Crunch on Saturday (March 29) despite a hat trick from Brad Richardson. Jamie Lundmark and T.J. Hensick also scored for the Monsters. Lake Erie received an assist from Tom Fritsche, who joined the club following the completion of his collegiate career at Ohio State University and has now totaled three points (1g/2a) in nine games.

The Monsters then experienced a 6-1 setback against the Toronto Marlies on Sunday, with Lundmark recording the lone goal for the Monsters. With the tally, Lundmark extended his goal-scoring streak to three games.

Lake Erie has six games remaining on its regular season schedule. This week, the club will host the Houston Aeros on Wednesday (April 2) before playing a home-and-home series against the Hamilton Bulldogs on Friday and Saturday.

-The University of Michigan Wolverines advanced to the Frozen Four thanks in part to the stellar play of netminder Billy Sauer. The junior stopped 16-of-17 shots in a 5-1 win over Niagara University during the opening round of the East Regional in Albany, N.Y. and then pitched a 27-save shutout in Michigan’s 2-0 win over Clarkson University on Saturday. Sauer improved his record to 30-4-3 this season and leads the nation in winning percentage (.851). The Wolverines will face the University of Notre Dame at the Frozen Four on Thursday, April 10th.

-The University of North Dakota will join the Wolverines at the Frozen Four after winning the Midwest Regional in Madison, Wis. The Fighting Sioux ousted Princeton University by a 5-1 score on Saturday, with freshman Brad Malone recording one shot on goal. The squad then topped Wisconsin in overtime by a 3-2 count on Sunday to set up a meeting with Boston College at the Frozen Four.

-Miami (Ohio) University forward Justin Mercier scored the overtime game-winner in the RedHawks’ 3-2 victory over Air Force Academy in the opening round of the Northeast Regional in Worcester, Mass. Miami then lost to Boston College in the Regional Final, marking the third straight year the Eagles have ended Miami’s season. Mercier finished his junior campaign with 40 points (25g/15a) in 42 games.

-Derek Peltier tallied an assist in the University of Minnesota’s 5-2 loss to Boston College on Saturday in the Northeast Regional. The Gopher captain concluded his senior season with 21 points (4g/17a) in 45 games, while sophomore Mike Carman finished the year with 11 points (4g/7a) in 23 contests.

-Nigel Williams and the No. 1 Belleville Bulls ousted Trevor Cann and the No. 8 Peterborough Petes in the opening round of the 2008 OHL Playoffs. Williams scored a power-play goal to help cement the Bulls’ 7-1 victory on Wednesday, giving Belleville a 4-1 series win. Williams totaled three goals and one assist in the five-game series. The Bulls will now face the Barrie Colts in the Eastern Conference Semifinals beginning Wednesday.

-The No. 4 London Knights were eliminated in the first round of the Western Conference Playoffs by the No. 5 Guelph Storm in five games. London defenseman Kevin Montgomery totaled one assist in the series.

-The Calgary Hitmen and forward T.J. Galiardi wrapped up their first-round WHL Playoff series on Sunday by defeating the Moose Jaw Warriors by a 4-2 score. Galiardi leads all WHL Playoff scorers with 13 points (2g/11a) after recording at least one point in each game and posting a pair of three-point outings.The Hitmen will next face the Swift Current Broncos in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

-Paul Carey totaled one assist in three games last week for the Indiana Ice and now ranks fifth in the USHL with 62 points (33g/29a) in 57 games. Indiana has already clinched a berth in the USHL Playoffs heading into the final week of the regular season.

-Cedar Rapids goaltender Kent Patterson earned his fourth straight victory by stopping 22-of-23 shots against the Des Moines Buccaneers last Tuesday, but had his winning streak snapped in a 3-1 loss to the Omaha Lancers on Friday. Like Indiana, Cedar Rapids has already clinched a playoff berth in the East Division.
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