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  • Reviving the NESCAC discussion, even if I'm talking to myself (or just neumeyer).

    We've reached the fall semester break, with teams having played between 4-6 games. Standings are:

    1. Tufts: 4-2-0, 13 points
    2T. Trinity: 4-0-0, 12 points
    2T. Hamilton: 4-1-0, 12 points
    4. Amherst: 3-2-0, 9 points
    5. Bowdoin: 2-2-1, 7.5 points
    6T. Colby: 1-2-2, 6 points
    6T. Conn College: 2-4-0, 6 points
    8. Middlebury: 1-4-1, 5.5 points
    9. Wesleyan, 2-2-0, 5 points
    10: Williams, 1-5-0, 2 points

    While Trinity has been as good as expected, some surprises in there. Not sure Tufts - hardly historically the strongest programme, I believe only one finish in the top four in their history - was expected to come out so strong. Similarly, a great start for Hamilton, who have improved in recent years but not really moved into the NESCAC's top tier.

    Equally, a dreadful start for Williams, who likely would've expected much more - though last year showed if you're in the playoffs anything can happen.

    Hard to get a read on Middlebury. The Panthers looked solid in their opening draw against Colby, earned a gutsy comeback win against Conn College, and lost in OT to Bowdoin and lost after leading 2-0 against Amherst. But setting aside the Norwich debacle, they were outclassed against both Hamilton and Tufts. It feels like Middlebury is having some of the same challenges scoring, but the defence is prone to bad nights too. Having streamed a few games, it's felt like a bit of puck chasing and not able to really control games.

    Thoughts from others? (Bueller?...Bueller?...)
    Middlebury hockey - "In it to win it"

    1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006 Men's DIII NCAA Champions
    2004, 2005, 2006 Women's DIII NCAA Champions, 2000, 2001 Women's DIII National Champions

    Comment


    • Originally posted by MikeMidd View Post
      Reviving the NESCAC discussion, even if I'm talking to myself (or just neumeyer).

      We've reached the fall semester break, with teams having played between 4-6 games. Standings are:

      1. Tufts: 4-2-0, 13 points
      2T. Trinity: 4-0-0, 12 points
      2T. Hamilton: 4-1-0, 12 points
      4. Amherst: 3-2-0, 9 points
      5. Bowdoin: 2-2-1, 7.5 points
      6T. Colby: 1-2-2, 6 points
      6T. Conn College: 2-4-0, 6 points
      8. Middlebury: 1-4-1, 5.5 points
      9. Wesleyan, 2-2-0, 5 points
      10: Williams, 1-5-0, 2 points

      While Trinity has been as good as expected, some surprises in there. Not sure Tufts - hardly historically the strongest programme, I believe only one finish in the top four in their history - was expected to come out so strong. Similarly, a great start for Hamilton, who have improved in recent years but not really moved into the NESCAC's top tier.

      Equally, a dreadful start for Williams, who likely would've expected much more - though last year showed if you're in the playoffs anything can happen.

      Hard to get a read on Middlebury. The Panthers looked solid in their opening draw against Colby, earned a gutsy comeback win against Conn College, and lost in OT to Bowdoin and lost after leading 2-0 against Amherst. But setting aside the Norwich debacle, they were outclassed against both Hamilton and Tufts. It feels like Middlebury is having some of the same challenges scoring, but the defence is prone to bad nights too. Having streamed a few games, it's felt like a bit of puck chasing and not able to really control games.

      Thoughts from others? (Bueller?...Bueller?...)
      Both Tufts and Hamilton were very aggressive on the recruiting front in 2023, and it is paying off big time. Hamilton had the second strongest recruiting class in all of D3 (according to Neutral Zone) with 12 new players. Tufts had a smaller number of new players but only lost one senior to graduation in 2023 so oodles of experience, especially among the forwards. Trinity is the usual Trinity. The fourth through the 10th place teams will battle for play-off spots, with all 7 seeming to have the ability to make it to the post-season so it should be a hyper-competitive season. Middlebury is still a year or two away from truly turning things around -- there is the culture and there is also talent. Middoebury is at the bottom of the ladder in terms of its ability to produce goals, which is mostly a reflection of a talent gap . . I would think that removing that "interim" tag in front of Ceglarski's name sooner rather than later would help on the recruiting front. Still, Middlebury should be able to make some noise this season as there have been glimpses of possibilities in several games . . .

      Comment


      • As a long suffering Jumbo fan it’s nice to see them off the great start this year. I would quibble with the notion that this was an aggressive recruiting year in that, as pointed out, they lost only one senior from last year. Brought in only five freshmen, three of whom are seeing significant ice time. This current recruiting cycle will be the challenge trying to replace 10 seniors, including 5 defensemen and two goalies! Things will get tougher for the Jumbos after this holiday break. Will be interesting to see how it all shakes out.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by puckyderm View Post
          As a long suffering Jumbo fan it’s nice to see them off the great start this year. I would quibble with the notion that this was an aggressive recruiting year in that, as pointed out, they lost only one senior from last year. Brought in only five freshmen, three of whom are seeing significant ice time. This current recruiting cycle will be the challenge trying to replace 10 seniors, including 5 defensemen and two goalies! Things will get tougher for the Jumbos after this holiday break. Will be interesting to see how it all shakes out.
          It was an aggressive recruiting year for Tufts because the Jumbos brought in four more players than they needed to replace the one graduating player, displacing or reducing the playing time of a number of returning players by bringing in five new players. . I understand why it happened since Tufts will lose many players to graduation in 2024 so good to get a start in replacing some of them. .

          Comment


          • Heading to Hobart v Middlebury tomorrow, the first time seeing the Panthers in person in 15 years. Buzzing with excitement... maybe feeling a bit of fear too.

            It's a helluva challenge for the Panthers, with the #1 ranked Statesmen having looked so good all season (and of course being the defending national champions). Hopefully there are signs of progress and competitiveness from Middlebury that they can build upon as we get back into NESCAC play.

            Any other Middlebury fans out there? And any NESCAC chatter from other schools?
            Middlebury hockey - "In it to win it"

            1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006 Men's DIII NCAA Champions
            2004, 2005, 2006 Women's DIII NCAA Champions, 2000, 2001 Women's DIII National Champions

            Comment


            • Nice win by Amherst over Endicott

              Comment


              • First Middlebury game in-person in 15+ years, and it was... oof.

                Final score of 8-1 to Hobart reflected just how good they are, with strong passing, fast skating, team defence, physical play. You can see how they are defending national champs and #1 in the country.

                Equally, I thought 8-1 was harsh to Middlebury, even if Hobart earned those goals. Some simple defensive errors that Hobart jumped on, struggling to control the puck and transition through the neutral zone, and just outclassed. But if you played this ten times, think 8-1 would be the outlier.

                In general, was surprised at how Middlebury kept up with Hobart's speed up and down the ice. A nice shorthanded goal by Jin Lee and glad the Panthers got a deserved one. Good to see a strong performance from rookie goalie Andrew Heinze, and thought Jake Horoho was better than the goals allowed would make you think. Dante Palombo looks like a solid player, a freshman find. Some nice chirping by one of the tall trees, think it was Burdett who got under their skin a bit.

                There will be few tougher nights than this for Middlebury. Now to Ceglarski to get the team to look ahead to tomorrow night against New England College, who are having their own very tough season.
                Middlebury hockey - "In it to win it"

                1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006 Men's DIII NCAA Champions
                2004, 2005, 2006 Women's DIII NCAA Champions, 2000, 2001 Women's DIII National Champions

                Comment


                • Originally posted by MikeMidd View Post
                  First Middlebury game in-person in 15+ years, and it was... oof.

                  Final score of 8-1 to Hobart reflected just how good they are, with strong passing, fast skating, team defence, physical play. You can see how they are defending national champs and #1 in the country.

                  Equally, I thought 8-1 was harsh to Middlebury, even if Hobart earned those goals. Some simple defensive errors that Hobart jumped on, struggling to control the puck and transition through the neutral zone, and just outclassed. But if you played this ten times, think 8-1 would be the outlier.

                  In general, was surprised at how Middlebury kept up with Hobart's speed up and down the ice. A nice shorthanded goal by Jin Lee and glad the Panthers got a deserved one. Good to see a strong performance from rookie goalie Andrew Heinze, and thought Jake Horoho was better than the goals allowed would make you think. Dante Palombo looks like a solid player, a freshman find. Some nice chirping by one of the tall trees, think it was Burdett who got under their skin a bit.

                  There will be few tougher nights than this for Middlebury. Now to Ceglarski to get the team to look ahead to tomorrow night against New England College, who are having their own very tough season.
                  I was very surprised to see Middlebury make the trip out to Hobart.

                  got me thinking, when is the last time Middlebury went that far west for a regular season game? Early 2000s maybe? Late 90s?

                  Middlebury also used to host a holiday men’s hockey tournament. Is that gone for good?
                  The Poster Formerly Known as Purple_and_Gold10©
                  "The Prezidential Three - Elmira, Oswego, Norwich" © Joecct
                  GO EAGLES!!! R.I.P. L.H. #4 In our hearts forever
                  GO LAKERS!!!
                  GO CADETS!!! R.I.P. Charlie Crosby '63
                  "Reisweber trying to circle in front of the net, he does, HE SCORES! that's it! Oswego State has done it!! The Lakers take home the first NCAA title of any kind in school history. It's celebration time in Upstate New York!"
                  Oswego State '09

                  Comment


                  • Originally posted by PrezdeJohnson09 View Post

                    I was very surprised to see Middlebury make the trip out to Hobart.

                    got me thinking, when is the last time Middlebury went that far west for a regular season game? Early 2000s maybe? Late 90s?

                    Middlebury also used to host a holiday men’s hockey tournament. Is that gone for good?
                    Hobart came to Middlebury for the Holiday Classic tournament last year, so perhaps this was a home-and-away deal.

                    Not sure why the tournament didn't happen this year. I know that it dropped for a year more than a decade ago, so could just be a one-time thing. Or perhaps because they owed Hobart a trip and you couldn't do that on a weeknight, they decided to cancel it.

                    Around 2000, Middlebury went to Wisconsin in early December to play St Norbert and Stevens Point. I'm not sure there's been anything actually west of Plattsburgh since then!
                    Middlebury hockey - "In it to win it"

                    1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006 Men's DIII NCAA Champions
                    2004, 2005, 2006 Women's DIII NCAA Champions, 2000, 2001 Women's DIII National Champions

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by MikeMidd View Post
                      . I'm not sure there's been anything actually west of Clinton since then!
                      made a small change.

                      Go 'Wick!

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by MikeMidd View Post

                        Hobart came to Middlebury for the Holiday Classic tournament last year, so perhaps this was a home-and-away deal.

                        Not sure why the tournament didn't happen this year. I know that it dropped for a year more than a decade ago, so could just be a one-time thing. Or perhaps because they owed Hobart a trip and you couldn't do that on a weeknight, they decided to cancel it.

                        Around 2000, Middlebury went to Wisconsin in early December to play St Norbert and Stevens Point. I'm not sure there's been anything actually west of Plattsburgh since then!
                        Hobart had gone to that Middlebury tournament a lot over the years it seemed. I feel like they’ve made at least 3-4 if not more appearances there since I’ve been out this way.
                        The Poster Formerly Known as Purple_and_Gold10©
                        "The Prezidential Three - Elmira, Oswego, Norwich" © Joecct
                        GO EAGLES!!! R.I.P. L.H. #4 In our hearts forever
                        GO LAKERS!!!
                        GO CADETS!!! R.I.P. Charlie Crosby '63
                        "Reisweber trying to circle in front of the net, he does, HE SCORES! that's it! Oswego State has done it!! The Lakers take home the first NCAA title of any kind in school history. It's celebration time in Upstate New York!"
                        Oswego State '09

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by jerrynu26 View Post
                          made a small change.

                          Yes yes, was thinking non-conference games. Of course Middlebury gets the "pleasure" of visiting Clinton every year in league play. (My brother went to Hamilton... :-P)


                          Originally posted by prezdejohnson09 View Post
                          Hobart had gone to that Middlebury tournament a lot over the years it seemed. I feel like they’ve made at least 3-4 if not more appearances there since I’ve been out this way.
                          Came a few times in the early 2000s, played in Lake Placid in 2015, and then back in the tournament in 2018 and 2022.

                          Middlebury helpfully has nice data pages on all opponents since 2000 on their website. Hobart info here: https://athletics.middlebury.edu/spo...rt-college/177

                          Really reinforces the different directions of the two programs over the past decade.
                          Middlebury hockey - "In it to win it"

                          1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2006 Men's DIII NCAA Champions
                          2004, 2005, 2006 Women's DIII NCAA Champions, 2000, 2001 Women's DIII National Champions

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by MikeMidd View Post
                            In general, was surprised at how Middlebury kept up with Hobart's speed up and down the ice. A nice shorthanded goal by Jin Lee and glad the Panthers got a deserved one. Good to see a strong performance from rookie goalie Andrew Heinze, and thought Jake Horoho was better than the goals allowed would make you think. Dante Palombo looks like a solid player, a freshman find. Some nice chirping by one of the tall trees, think it was Burdett who got under their skin a bit.
                            The one thing Midd is missing this season (and for the past decade) is shooting skill. Jin Lee can skate and has some skill with shooting, but the rest of the team has a tendency to either shoot the puck into the goaltender or the opponents who block the shots.

                            It was an interesting comparison to watch the Westfield St vs Salem St (MASCAC ended 6-4 for Westfield) game on Thursday and the Middlebury vs. Wesleyan (ended 1-1) on Friday. The MASCAC game was a wild, disorganized mess as both teams simply worked to throw the puck and themselves down the ice. But both teams had several member who could shoot the puck. Contrast to the NESCAC game where the teams had a well organized break out, repeated crisp passing into the offensive zone. And the shots on goal are either right at the goal tender or off target. The emphasis on defense was very evident.

                            Another interesting comparison was watching the Conn College vs Suffolk in the Codfish bowl. The different play styles were very evident. That game ended 1 to 1 with Conn winning the shootout after 6 rounds.

                            Comment


                            • No Middlebury commentary on Tuesday’s big win?!

                              Comment


                              • I was just coming by to note to big NESCAC wins:

                                Saturday the bottom ranked Williams Ephs manages a 2-1 win over the #3 Plattsburgh Cardinals. And then the Tuesday win by Middlebury over the #11 Norwich team. The complaining on the Norwich thread was especially interesting.

                                I really wanted to go to the game and be in the rink, but the blizzard conditions were just a little beyond our ability to want to drive to the rink. Watching the game on streaming. Midd looked really good and played well. The close games in the NESCAC

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