November 26, 2015

UNO Mavericks fall in first ever Frozen Four game.

UNO goalie Ryan Massa makes a save during the Mavericks' semi-final game at the Frozen Four (photo/UNO Athletics)

UNO goalie Ryan Massa makes a save during the Mavericks’ semi-final game at the Frozen Four (photo/UNO Athletics)

The third ranked University of Nebraska Omaha Mavericks hockey team saw their historic run come to an end on Thursday, losing to Providence 4-1, in the semifinals of the 2015 NCAA Frozen Four at Boston’s TD Garden.

The Mavericks, who finished the season at 20-13-6, missed a chance to play for a national championship in their first-ever trip to the Frozen Four.

UNO trailed 2-0 entering the third period but broke the shutout at 10:46 when Jake Guentzel snapped a shot from the low slot. The goal was Guentzel’s career-best 14th of the year.  He finished the season as the Mavericks’ leading scorer with 14 goals and 25 assists for 39 points.

The Friars wasted little time by responding just 24 seconds later when Trevor Mingoia beat UNO goalie Ryan Massa off a centering pass to make it 3-1. Nick Saracino scored an empty net goal at 19:29 to cap off the game.

Massa finished with 44 saves, as the Friars outshot the Mavericks, 48-26. Massa finished the season with a record of 14-8-6, a career high for wins in a season.


Puck drops today on UNO’s first Frozen Four Appearance

Nebraska-Omaha hockey is in the NCAA Frozen Four (photo/UNO Athletics)

Nebraska-Omaha hockey is in the NCAA Frozen Four (photo/UNO Athletics)

The No. 3 Omaha Mavericks make their first-ever appearance in the NCAA Frozen Four today they face the No. 4 Providence Friars at 4 p.m. CT in the first semifinal game at TD Garden in Boston.

The Mavericks are 20-12-6 overall this season, and their third-place finish in the NCHC matches the best in school history. The Mavericks were 11-7-2 at home this season and 7-5-4 on the road. They are 2-0-0 in neutral-site games, their first of the year coming in the NCAA Midwest Regionals.

Providence is 24-13-2 overall and finished 13-8-1 in Hockey East, tying it with Boston College for second place. The Friars were the fourth seed in the NCAA East Regional, beating Miami, 7-5, and Denver, 4-1, to advance to the Frozen Four. Providence was 13-6-0 at home, 8-7-2 on the road and 3-0-0 in neutral-site games this season.

The Mavericks have made three appearances in the NCAA Tournament, earning their first wins in the Midwest Regionals against Harvard and RIT. Head coach Dean Blais has led them to two NCAA tournament berths, the other coming in 2011 when they were a three seed and lost to Michigan, 3-2 in overtime at St. Louis, Mo. The first appearance was 2006 under former head coach Mike Kemp when, as a four seed, they lost to Boston University, 9-2, at Worcester, Mass.

Blais is in his sixth year as the head coach of the Mavericks, having led UNO to three 20-win campaigns in that time. The 1973 graduate of Minnesota has posted a record of 373-213-57 (.624) in his career as a head coach and has guided the Mavericks to a mark of 111-98-24 (.528). He spent 10 years as head coach at North Dakota where he led UND to national championships in 1997 and 2000.

You can watch the game on ESPN2.

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Nebraska-Omaha hockey reaches Frozen Four for first time in school history

Nebraska-Omaha celebrates their trip to the Frozen Four (photo/

Nebraska-Omaha celebrates their trip to the Frozen Four (photo/

For the first time in school history, the University of Nebraska-Omaha hockey team earned a berth in the NCAA Frozen Four, beating RIT 4-0 in the Midwest Regional finals on Sunday night at Compton Family Ice Arena at Notre Dame.  The Mavericks will play Providence College in the first Frozen Four semifinal on Thursday, April 9 at 4 p.m. CT at TD Bank Garden in Boston. The game will be televised on ESPN2.

Ryan Massa made 40 saves for his second shutout of the season and was named Most Outstanding Player of the tournament and a member of the all-tournament team.

The Mavericks broke open a scoreless game with four goals in the third period to beat the Tigers, Atlantic Hockey’s playoff champion and the winner of eight straight games. UNO is now 20-12-6, its third 20-win season in Dean Blais’ six-year tenure as head coach. It also will be his fourth appearance in a Frozen Four.

North Dakota will play in the other semifinal against Boston University, making both semis a battle of NCHC vs. Hockey East teams.

Mavericks start tough stretch with a tough road loss at North Dakota State

Marcus Tyus led UNO in the loss to ND State (photo/

Marcus Tyus led UNO in the loss to ND State (photo/

The Omaha men’s basketball team began another challenging road stretch on Thursday, falling 64-57 to North Dakota State at Scheels Arena. The Mavericks are now 8-14 (2-8 Summit League), while the Bison, who secured their 22nd consecutive home win, improve to 16-7 (8-2 Summit League).

Omaha was paced by junior guard Marcus Tyus, who shot 7-of-13 with four 3-pointers to finish with 21 points. The Ramsey, Minn., native added two rebounds and an assist for the night.

Senior forward Mike Rostampour also had a double-figure scoring performance, totaling 13 points on 5-of-10 shooting. He also pulled down a game-high eight rebounds and had one assist and one steal. Junior forward Jake White matched Rostampour with another eight rebounds, as he made his first start since Omaha’s season opener against Central Arkansas on Nov. 16.

As a team, UNO shot .407 (22-of-54) from the field, .294 (5-of-17) beyond the arc and .800 (8-of-10) at the line. NDSU came in at .440 (22-of-50) from the floor, .381 (8-of-21) from long range and .800 (12-of-15) at the stripe. Omaha won the rebounding battle, 33-29.

North Dakota State was led by 18 points from Lawrence Alexander, who hit a trio of 3-pointers and added two assists and three steals. A.J. Jacobson also had 15 points for the Bison, alongside three boards and four assists.

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5th ranked Nebraska-Omaha hockey splits weekend series against #1 North Dakota

Austin Ortega celebrates his game winner on Friday night (photo/

Austin Ortega celebrates his game winner on Friday night (photo/

No. 1 North Dakota got a goal 2:04 into the overtime to beat the No. 5 Omaha hockey team, 4-3, on Saturday night, turning the tables on the Mavericks who had won in OT one night earlier.  Brendan O’Donnell fired a quick shot from the left wing that tucked under Ryan Massa for his 10th goal of the year. It ended a game in which the Mavericks fought back from a one-goal deficit three times.

The Mavericks are now 16-7-3 overall and 10-5-1-1 in the NCHC. They remain in first place, just one point ahead of North Dakota which is now 19-6-2 overall and 10-5-1-0 in conference play.

On Friday, Austin Ortega scored with 33 seconds remaining in overtime to push the No. 5 Omaha hockey team past No. 1 North Dakota, 3-2.  The goal, Ortega’s nation-leading ninth game winner, came during a rare 5-on-3 power play.

The Mavericks have a week off before hosting Western Michigan on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 13-14.