The Frozen Four (and, really, any big sporting event) always lends itself to comparisons and obscure records. USA Hockey’s Dave Fischer, the official press conference mediator, is always mentioning such stats, including some you’ve probably never considered before.

2011 0408 Duluth practice – Images by Candace Horgan

Take, for example, today’s gem: If the Bulldogs win Saturday night, Scott Sandelin will join Gino Gasparini and George Gwozdecky as the third coach with the same initials to win a Frozen Four (GG, SS … you get where this is going).

Some comparisons however, are drawn for reference, such as 2004, the last time the Bulldogs made the Frozen Four, and 1984, the last time they were in the finals.

Coach Scott Sandelin knows these games, and can look at them for knowledge.

“You know what’s scary? Last night when we were up 4-2, I thought about being up 3-1,” he said, referencing 2004 when his team was up 3-1 at the end of the second period on Denver before losing, 5-3. “I was talking with Clay Matvick and I hate those negative-type thinking, but again, we talked about, last night, closing out the game and we didn’t make any mention of that, but I think this team is similar but yet different. They’ve found ways to win and I think every year is a little bit different, but for me, I was a little nervous when that thought crept into my head.

“It was the same thing in ’04. Somebody had mentioned that we hadn’t lost a lead in 27 games going into the third period that year, and sure enough, we did. So I’m glad we got that out of the way against Bemidji earlier in the Final Five.”

  • Sara

    ConfusedFan – Mike Connolly isn’t even the best player on his team. Well, at least it’s debateable whether he is the best player on his team or not.

    • Confusedfan

      Watch him play every game, then come back on here and have an intelligent conversation about it.

      • Anonymous

        I’ve seen him play since he was a freshman… great talent, but if you took him off of what I believe is the best line in college hockey he would not fair nearly as well. Their chemistry is absolutely beautiful. Frattin is a workhorse and out skates and overpowers his opponents and has a snipe…. he wins hands down.

  • Brett

    Agree – thanks for the article, Elliot.

    The INCH article seems to be almost a retaliation to any UND fans who pointed out that Frattin’s scoring came against overall tougher competition. Not surprising, but disappointing still. Interesting to compare the top 5 in each conference, but let’s face it – conferences are not equal. I can’t speak for Andy Miele but there’s a reason Frattin was chosen convincingly as WCHA Player of the Year. Simply put, he was the player (not line) that nearly every team in the conference feared and focused on shutting down each weekend. I can’t recall how many times opposing coaches commented on him being a ‘man among boys’ out there, and for good reason. Given that, and his speed and physical dominance (and the fact that he wasn’t sitting around collecting garbage goals all year) will hopefully be taken into consideration…

    • Jdorf40

      Maybe we should ask Kevin Wehrs who he fears most…

  • FightinSue

    Perhaps the Hobey voters will not be fooled this year and will give it to Cam Atkinson after looking like dopes in 2008 (Gerbe), 2010 (Atkinson), and even a little in 2006 (Collins).

    • B.D.

      Who are they again?

  • Scout7561

    Frattin hands down. Played a tougher schedule than Miele. He could have left to make a lot of money but showed the character to come back without a scholorship, work hard and become the #1 player in the toughest conference.

  • Frattin is one hell of a 2 way player and very physical. Not sure about Miele but Frattin does it all.

  • Billymbrew

    Frattin doesn’t have the Character… period.


    the guy who said that the best sioux players in the past 15 years are Parise and Toews is not a die hard sioux fan the best players are Ryan Duncan Jeff Panzer Jason Blake Zach Parise yes but no not Toews. Parise only played for 2 years and Toews a year and a half. YOU SIR ARE AN IDOIT