Wednesday, March 6, 2019

News and Notes: Top Ten, Clapperton, FISU Games

After an impressive showing in the opening game of the best 2-of-3 AUS Final, the Reds are in Antigonish tonight as they look to close out the St. FX X-Men. In the meantime, here are a couple of notes of interest:

- The Reds stayed in second spot in the latest U Sports top ten rankings released yesterday. The Alberta Golden Bears, fresh off of a 3rd consecutive Canada West championship, continue to lead the way with 296 points (146 media points with 11 1st place votes + 150 ELO points). UNB was close behind with 273 points (138 media points with the other four 1st place votes + 135 ELO points). The Canada West runner-up Saskatchewan Huskies (236 points), St. FX X-Men (181), who made the biggest jump going from unranked last week to 4th this week, and OUA West Division champion Guelph Gryphons (157) rounded out the top five. The OUA East winners from Queen's (154), and the eliminated Ottawa Gee-Gees (109), Carleton Ravens (88), McGill Redmen (46), and Saint Mary's Huskies (46) make up the rest of the top ten. Interestingly, the Western Mustangs, who were beaten by Guelph but, along with Carleton, still have a chance to get to the University Cup, were only ranked 11th with 33 points.

- Monty Mosher has a nice story on recently crowned AUS MVP Christopher Clapperton.

- It hasn't gotten much attention around these parts, mainly due to the lack of involvement from most of the conference, but the Winter Universiade Games are currently taking place in Krasnoyarsk, Russia. As usual, the men's hockey team is made up of U Sports players but, unlike most years where the team is comprised solely of players from one particular conference, the timing of the games meant any player from across the country was under consideration, provided their team was eliminated early enough from their conference playoffs. The only players from the AUS to make the trip were a trio of Acadia Axemen - defencemen Liam Maaskant and Garrett McFadden and forward Stephen Harper. 

Thus far, Team Canada is off to a 3-0 start with wins over the United Kingdom (12-0), Latvia (6-1), and Switzerland (6-2). They wrap up the round-robin with games against Sweden on Thursday and medal contender Kazakhstan on Saturday. The semi-finals and final are scheduled for Monday and Tuesday.