Saturday, February 27, 2010

B³ Post-Game Recap 2/27: Team USA 7, Lincoln 1

Yikes. I guess the old motto applies to this game, "If you can't beat them, beat them up."

Team USA's U-18 team schooled the Lincoln Stars up and down the ice on Saturday night. In the meantime, Lincoln racked up two fighting majors, six roughing penalties and four unsportsmanlike conduct misconducts, turning an otherwise clinic into a street fight.

Team USA won the game, 7-1. There really isn't much to say about this game, other than what has been said the majority of the season: bad game. Lincoln fell down 5-0 before Jarrod Mermis lit the lamp with 19 seconds left in the second period. Team USA scored twice early in the third to turn it into a rout. Jared Coreau, who has been stellar of late, was pulled early in the second after allowing four goals on 20 shots, although they were not all his fault. Matt Green didn't fare much better, allowing three goals on 16 shots.

Team USA goalie Jack Cambell made 37 saves on 38 shots. Jason Zucker had a hat trick 26 minutes into the game.

What say you, Stars fans? The team hasn't started thinking about going home yet, have they? This weekend at the Ice Box sure was not fun. Stars outscored 11-1 on their home ice. Ouch.

The Unofficial USHL Hockey Blog Returns!

I thought I'd take a moment and mention that the Unofficial USHL Hockey Blog is no longer dormant, as my good friend Ryan is blogging again.  Great news for USHL junkies like myself.  For those who are not familiar with his blog, Ryan does a fantastic job blogging about anything and everything related to the USHL.  Ryan and his blog was a big inspiration for me when it came time to create the Black and Blue Blog.  Ryan took a hiatus from blogging for awhile, but I'm glad to see him back posting again.  He's been doing it for years, and he has quite the fanbase.  Click here to check out his blog.

B³ Post-Game Recap 2/26: Omaha 4, Lincoln 0


The wrong records continue to be broken this season as the Omaha Lancers shutout the Lincoln Stars at the IceBox last night 3-0, and swept the regular season series from the Stars for the first time in league history.  It was the second straight game in which the Lancers shutout the Stars.  The Lancers went 5-0 against the Stars this season, outscoring them 23-6 in those five games.  Lancers goaltender Jeff Teglia won all five games, posting a 1.20 goals against average, a .963 save percentage, and two shutouts.  With the loss, the Stars fell to 13-26-8 (34 points), and are in last place in the USHL West Division.

I thought the Stars came out very strong in the first period and played the Lancers tough.  The majority of quality scoring chances from Lincoln came in that first period, including a Dominik Shine slapshot that got past Jeff Teglia as the horn sounded at the end of the first period.  That goal was waved off.  Late in the second, the Stars turned over the puck in their own end which resulted in an Omaha goal, making it 1-0 bad guys.  After that, it was as if the Lancers smelled blood in the water and the Stars just couldn't stop bleeding.  The Lancers thoroughly outplayed the Stars in the second and third periods, in route to the shutout win.  The boxscore states that Lincoln put 32 shots on net, but from where I sat, the majority of those shots came from the perimeter, and never really tested Omaha goaltender Jeff Teglia.  That had to have been the easiest 32 shots Teglia has faced all season long.  In the loss, Stars goaltender Jared Coreau stopped 36 of 39 shots.

Give credit to the Lancers for coming into a rowdy environment and taking it right to the Stars.  Whereas the Stars just can't seem to put an entire 60 minutes together, the Lancers never quit last night and kept pushing forward.  With the Fargo Force slipping a bit as of late, the Lancers have increased their point lead in the USHL West standings.  In my opinion, the Lancers right now are the second best team in the USHL, behind Green Bay.  I still wonder if the Lancers have the physicality to win a long, drawn out playoff series against a team like Fargo or Green Bay, but we shall see.  Despite lacking the players who can grind it out physically, they easily have the most skilled group of forwards I've seen this season.  They also have the top goaltender (Teglia) in the league, in my opinion.

The Stars return to the IceBox tonight against the very talented U-18 Team USA squad.  Faceoff is at 7:05pm.  Remember, the University of Nebraska men's and women's basketball teams will be playing at Devaney today.  The men play at 3pm, while the women tip off at 7pm.  Be prepared to deal with some nasty traffic, and the idiotic Devaney Center parking attendants.  Arrive early.

Go Stars.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

B³ Weekend Preview - Omaha and Team USA U-18

 
The Lincoln Stars will once again play host to two teams at the IceBox this weekend, as the Omaha Lancers visit Friday night, and Team USA U-18 visits Saturday night.  The Stars are smack dab in the middle of an 8 game home-stand, the longest of the season.  Lincoln has a home record of 6-11-4, an overall record of 13-25-8 (34 points), and continue to occupy last place in the USHL West Division.

On Friday night, the Lincoln Stars will attempt to win their first matchup against their rival to the north, as the Omaha Lancers are 4-0 against the Stars this season.  This particular game will be the final time these two teams face each other this season.  In those four previous games against Lincoln, the Lancers have outscored the Stars, 19-6.  Adding to the string of ugly statistics, the last time the Stars faced off against the Lancers, it was Omaha who took Lincoln to the woodshed with a 7-0 spanking at the IceBox on 1/22.  The Lancers are in first place in the USHL West Division with a record of 32-12-3 (67 points).  

The Lancers are a very well balanced team, with explosive fowards, great goaltending, and exceptional special teams.  If there is one "weak" spot on this Lancers team, it's on defense.  The Lancers aren't a very physical team on the blueline, thus their d-men can be pushed around a bit.  However, this is still one of the top three teams in the league, in my opinion.  The Lancers are currently riding a three game winning streak, but all three wins came against the bottom feeders of the USHL East Division, the Youngstown Phantoms.  As usual, the Lancers offense is led by forwards Matt White, Erik Haula, Dakota Everland, and newly acquired Greg "Stars Killer" Wolfe (from Chicago).  Omaha goaltender Jeff Teglia is 4-0 against the Stars this season, with a 1.50 goals against average, and a .953 save percentage in those four games.  In my opinion, Teglia is the top goaltender in the league.

On Saturday night, the Stars will entertain the U-18 Team USA squad for the first time this season at the IceBox.  Team USA, which consists of two seperate teams (U-17's and U-18's), has a record of 14-23-4 (32 points) and are in sixth place in the USHL East Division.  The players on the Team USA U-18 squad are all 17 years old or younger, and have been hand-picked by the Team USA Developmental Program.  The U-18 squad faced off against the Stars back on 2/5, and it was the Stars who fell 3-0 to Team USA.  Surprisingly in that game, the Stars outshot the U-18 squad, 34-27, but could not solve Team USA goaltender Andy Iles, who recorded his first and only shutout of the season.

The U-18 squad splits their schedule between USHL opponents, and collegiate teams.  Despite being such a young team, this team frequently beats collegiate teams from around the country.  For example, Cornell and Colgate Universities are just two hockey clubs who have been beaten by the U-18 Team USA squad this season.  Against USHL opposition, the U-18 squad has only lost a few games.  Like Omaha, this is a very offensive top-heavy team, but they also have fantastic goaltending.  Netminders Jack Campbell and the aforementioned Andy Iles are two of the top NHL draft eligible, American born goaltenders in the country.  Catching this team on a night off is a rare event.  The players on this team end up on the rosters of some of the best college hockey teams in the country.  There will be a lot of home-grown talent on the ice Saturday night, so don't blink.

The schedule never gets any easier for the Stars, as both teams Lincoln will face this weekend are very skilled and battle-tested.  The Lancers are right in the middle of a divisional title race with Fargo, so I'm sure they are well aware not to overlook the Stars or take them for granted.  Despite their record, the Stars have played Omaha tough at times this season...other times, not so much.  The recent 7-0 drubbing at the hands of Omaha should be fresh in the minds of the Lincoln players, so I would hope they come out in this game with some fire in their bellies, looking for revenge.  Although the Stars have not been mathematically eliminated from the playoffs, the hope of playing in the postseason is long gone.  However, this team can play the role of spoiler from here on out this season.  A lot of these teams will be looking at the Stars as an easy two points, so it's up to the players on the roster to show up and play for each other, and play for their own pride.

Go Stars.

What do you think?  Can the Stars finally beat the Omaha Lancers?  Who starts in net this weekend for Lincoln?  Will it be hard for you to root against a Team USA squad?  Will the Devaney Center parking clowns attendants provide more headaches for Stars fans this Saturday night, with both basketball teams playing? 

Note:  It was announced today that the radio home of the Lincoln Stars will switch back to an all-sports programming format on March 8th, and be known once again as ESPN 1480 AM.  One month ago, 1480 AM switched to oldies music, which apparently didn't sit well with the sports fans in Lincoln.  The month-long oldies experiment failed after sports fans in Lincoln complained to the station, according to the article linked above.  This is good news for sports fans like myself, but the station still has horrible coverage outside of Lincoln.  For many who live outside of the capital city, 1480 AM cannot be picked up at all.  It's just my opinion, but the best thing the Stars could do in the offseason is to go back to a FM station to broadcast games.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Snapshots of the Game - Gamblers at Stars 2/20

This is a few days late, so I apologize in advance.  Once again, thanks again to Brandon Anderson, official photographer or the Stars, for letting me post a few of his photos here at the B³.  First up is a great shot of Green Bay goaltender Steve Summerhays looking back as the puck finds its way into the net from Ryan Dzingel's stick.  Secondly, a photo of head coach Jimmy McGroarty in disagreement with referee Geoff Miller as Matt Bruneteau is shown bleeding from a high stick that wasn't called.  Great shots as always, BA.





Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Happy Birthday to the Black and Blue Blog!

On this day, one year ago, I created the Black and Blue Blog  largely as a place where I could drone on and on about my favorite hockey team.  It was something I had thought about doing for a long time, but it wasn't until late February last year before I actually laid the groundwork.  At the time, I knew I loved hockey, loved talking about hockey, and loved talking about the Lincoln Stars.  It just seemed natural to create my own "space" to express my thoughts, not even thinking at the time that anybody out there would be interested in reading my inane hockey ramblings.  One year later, and I'm proud to say that in my opinion...we are the preeminent news source for the Lincoln Stars.  I'm constantly amazed at how much this blog as grown in the past 12 months. 

I'm not going to ramble on any more than I need to, but I would be remiss if I didn't thank some people who have helped shape this blog to what it is today.  First of all, I want to thank BellTolls for joining the "B³ Team" and helping me out with writing articles for the blog.  It's a lot of work coming up with ideas for articles, finding the time to type them up, and then getting them on the blog.  Sometimes after losses, the last thing we want to do is sit in front of a computer and type out a game recap.  BT and I do it because we know so many folks out there enjoy coming to our blog to get their Stars fix.  BT has been a great addition, and I look forward to having him contribute even more.  I really enjoy reading his articles, mainly because he does a much better job than I do with spelling and grammar. :)  He makes the blog look good!  Secondly, I want to thank Layla for helping run the live chats we do here for all Lincoln Stars road games.  Layla is always eager to help, and I appreciate her willingness and support.

Finally, I want to thank the most important person out there....you, the reader.  Without your patronage and continued support, I would still be here talking to myself.  Because of this blog, I've had the opportunity to meet so many great people:  Stars fans, Stars players, friends and family members of Stars players, people who work for the Stars, etc.  The list goes on and on.  The friendships I've made because of this website is something I appreciate very much.  I'm constantly amazed when people stop me at the IceBox when I'm wearing my "Yeti" jersey to say, "Hey, you're Yeti!  We love reading your blog!" I am honestly flattered and humbled.  BT and I do this all for the die-hard Lincoln Stars fans who love the game, and who can't get enough of the best team in the USHL.

I am very excited for the future of the Black and Blue Blog, and I hope you are as well.  I have some things planned which will help the B³ grow even larger, and improve upon our readership.  We're growing stronger day by day, and I don't see that changing at all.  Thank you, faithful blog reader, for your continued support. 

Go Stars.

-Yeti
lincolnstarshockey@gmail.com

Monday, February 22, 2010

Backes, USA Upset Canada, 5-3

The USA stunned Canada at their own game Sunday night, as the red, white and blue defeated the Canadians, 5-3, in their Olympic group play matchup. Watch the highlights here. The U.S. earned a bye in the quarterfinals, while the Canadians now will have to go through the Russians to earn a spot in the championship next week.
The win was the first for the U.S. against Canada in the Olympics since 1960.

Brian Rafalski scored two goals to lead the U.S., who held a 4-2 lead late in the 3rd period. But Canada's Sidney Crosby scored to cut the lead to one, and Canada put a flurry of shots on net, but Ryan Miller stood on his head. Former Star David Backes had an assist in the win, giving him one goal and two apples in the competition. How cool is it to see a former Star in the Olympics?

WHAT A GAME. Judging by the poll on the right, many of our Black and Blue visitors watched the game Sunday night. That last three minutes was the most stressful hockey I've seen in quite some time. Canada held the puck in the U.S. zone for what seemed like hours. It was like they were on a two-man advantage, excpet it was 5-on-5. I watched the end of the game at the UNL Rec Center in the lobby, and it was really cool because it started out as two or three of us with eight minutes left and turned into about 30 people for the last couple minutes. Everyone cheered when Ryan Kesler dove on the ice for the empty-netter to clinch the win, and I'm sure most of them weren't hockey fans.

So what about you all? How did you celebrate the win? Did you call up your Canadian friends and rub it in? Tomorrow will probably be a national day of mourning up there. I've heard hockey to Canada is football, baseball and basketball combined to Americans. I hope others got to watch this awesome game, assuming everyone had access to MSNBC (cough, cough, Yeti). :)

Go Stars.......and Stripes!
(Photo from WashingtonPost.com)

(Bracket graphic courtesy of On The Forecheck blog)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Saturday Night Fights

As promised, here are four of the five fights from the Green Bay game last night.  Much thanks go out to the person who recorded them (she knows who she is!).  Due to video quality, the Hibbeler-Crane fight was not uploaded.  Enjoy!






B³ Post-Game Recap 2/20 Green Bay 4, Lincoln 3 OT

In what must seem like a broken record to the Stars and their fans, Lincoln lost yet another overtime heart-breaker at the IceBox Saturday night, 4-3 to the Green Bay Gamblers. Midway through the overtime period, Gamblers forward Anders Lee wristed the game winner past Stars goaltender Jared Coreau to give the Gamblers their 19th win in their last 21 games. Lincoln opened the scoring in the first period when forward Ryan Dzingel scored his seventh goal of the season to give the Stars the early 1-0 lead. The Gamblers answered less than two minutes later on the powerplay to even the score at 1-1. Less than a minute after the Gamblers goal, Stars forward Ben Lynch wristed the puck past GB goaltender Steve Summerhays to give Lincoln a 2-1 lead going into the second period.

Halfway through the second stanza, Gamblers forward Reed Seckel scored on the powerplay to even the score at 2-2. Former Gamblers forward Sam Afieri scored his first goal as a member of the Lincoln Stars on a goal mouth scramble against his former team late in the second period to give the Stars the 3-2 lead going into the third period. In the third period, the Gamblers put a ton of shots on net and finally solved Jared Coreau late in the period when forward Robert Francis deflected the puck past the Lincoln goaltender to even the score at 3-3. In overtime, the Gamblers leading scorer, Anders Lee, skated in on a 3-on-1 and wristed the game winner between the legs of Jared Coreau. With the win, Green Bay goaltender Steve Summerhays won his 19th straight game, which broke the USHL record for consecutive wins by a goaltender.

Not surprisingly, this was an extremely physical game. Whenever these two teams face each other, regardless of their records, you can bet money on it being physical. "Old time hockey" was definitely the phrase for the night. In total, there were five fights, and ten fighting majors (including two fighting misconducts) called in the game. The two teams combined for 112 penalty minutes. The fans certainly got their monies worth tonight.  I know someone at the game who recorded all five fights on video, so once those have been uploaded to youtube, I will post them here.

Despite the loss, the Stars have to be VERY proud of their effort tonight. Green Bay is the best team in the  USHL, and the Stars traded punches (sometimes literally) with them the whole night. I just wish the Stars would have played a little more aggressive with the puck in that third period, instead of playing "not to lose." It seemed like the Stars were content with dumping the puck in the offensive zone in the third, and then playing prevent defense after that. It was just a matter of time before one of the GB shots got past Coreau. The Stars had some good chances in overtime, specifically when Brodie Reid was left all alone in the slot with the puck, but he shot it wide. Soon after that, the Gamblers capitalized on an odd man rush to win the game in OT.

What did you think of this wild game?  Are the Gamblers for real?  Are the Stars playing like a last place team?  How well was this game officiated?  Let's hear it, Stars fans!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Snapshots of the Game - Musketeers at Stars 2/19

Thanks again go out to Brandon Anderson, official photographer of the Lincoln Stars, for providing the pictures below.  Great work as always, Brandon.  The first phto I picked is a fantastic panoramic shot of the Stars starting lineup during the pre-game festivities.  The second picture captures the moment before Kyle Gibbons game winning goal late in the third period.

Go Stars.

 

 

B³ Post-Game Recap 2/19 Sioux City 1, Lincoln 3


Just when it looked like the Lincoln Stars would take another game into overtime at the IceBox, Stars forward Kyle Gibbons scored on a goal-mouth scramble with only 1:27 left in the third period to give Lincoln a 2-1 lead, and an eventual 3-1 victory over the Sioux City Musketeers.  The Stars opened the scoring early in the second period when forward Jarrod Mermis scored on the powerplay against his former team to give Lincoln a 1-0 lead.  The Muskies answered later in the second period when forward Matt Paape scored on a one-timer in the low slot to even the game at 1-1.  After the Kyle Gibbons game-winning goal, Stars forward Brodie Reid scored an empty net goal to end the scoring at 3-1.  Stars goaltender Jared Coreau stood on his head again, stopping 34 of 35 shots to record his seventh victory of the season.  Brodie Reid finished the game with 1 goal, 2 assists, and was +2 on the night.  Jarrod Mermis finished with 1 goal, 1 assist, and was +1 on the night.  With the win, the Stars improved to 13-25-7 (33 points).

Great team effort last night as the Stars sent the IceBox into a frenzy with the Gibbons goal late in the third.  I think like most in attendance last night, I thought for sure that this game was going to end up in overtime, and possibly, in a dreaded shootout.  I was happy to see the players push hard the last 10 minutes of the third period to keep the game from going to an extra session.  The Stars certainly didn't play like a last place team last night.  There were times in the game that the Stars seemed to regress and lose focus, but when the game was on the line, they battled until the game winner was scored.  Jared Coreau was the first star in the game, and deservedly so.  Without his effort last night, the Stars home woes would have continued. Coreau is playing his best hockey, and I hope the coaches give him the nod tonight against the Green Bay Gamblers.  You gotta stick with your hot goaltender.  It was also nice to see Jarrod Mermis get rewarded for his hard work.  He's a guy who I thought would play a more prominent role in this year's offense, but like many on this team, he's been snake-bit.  For one of the smallest players on the team, Mermis eagerly throws his body around with reckless abandon and plays fearless.

Stars forward Ryan Dzingel and defenseman Austin Handley will return to the lineup tonight after serving a one game suspension, which is timely considering the Stars will be facing off against the best team in the USHL tonight.  Garrett Peterson filled in on defense last night due to the absence of Handley in the lineup, and was solid as always.  That kid is a shot-blocking machine, and he's a treat to watch.  Getting back to the game tonight, the Green Bay Gamblers lost a rare game last night in Kearney to the Tri-City Storm, so you know they'll be angry and ready to give it their all tonight against the Stars at the IceBox.  Whenever these two teams face off against each other, the chance for fireworks is always present.  Should be a great game to watch.

Another reminder, the game tonight against Green Bay will begin an hour later than normal at 8:05pm.  The IceBox will open its doors at 6:00pm like usual, but the game will begin two hours later.  Plenty of time to get your drink on, if that's how you roll.  I really hope to see a sellout crowd tonight.  The Stars are going to need all of our support tonight to cheer them on to victory.  Bring your friends, your family, anyone you can think of to the game tonight and cheer your butts off.  Be Loud.  Be Proud.

Go Stars.

What did you think of the game Friday night?

Thursday, February 18, 2010

B³ Weekend Preview: Sioux City and Green Bay


The Lincoln Stars will return to the comfy confines of the IceBox this weekend where they will face off against the Sioux City Musketeers on Friday night, and the Green Bay Gamblers on Saturday night.  The Lincoln Stars are currently in last place in the USHL West Division with a record of 12-25-7 (31 points).

First up for the Stars this weekend is the Sioux City Musketeers. SC has a record of 18-19-5 (41 points), and are in fifth place in the USHL West Division, battling for that last playoff spot. The Muskies and Stars have only faced each other two times this season, with each team winning one contest. On 10/3/09, the Stars and goaltender Jared Coreau shutout the Musketeers in Sioux City by a score of 2-0. On 1/12/10, the Muskies returned the favor at the IceBox with interest as SC stomped all over the Stars, 8-2. That’s the game that many Stars fans in attendance would love to forget. That game was plain ugly. Like the Stars, the Muskies have struggled this season on offense, having scored a total of 106 goals in 42 games (2.52 per game) this season. Unlike the Stars however, the Musketeers have done a good job keeping the puck out of their own net. Sioux City has surrendered a total of 128 goals against, which is tied for fourth-best in the USHL. SC is led by forward Stephan Vigier, who has scored 32 points (17g, 15a) in 41 games for the Muskies this season. Also like the Stars, the Muskies have found better luck on the road this season, compared to at home. The Muskies are 7-10-3 at home, but have a winning record of 11-9-2 on the road.

On Saturday night, the Stars will entertain the best team in the USHL right now (in my opinion), the Green Bay Gamblers. The Gamblers sport an impressive record of 33-7-3 (69 points), and are in first place in the USHL East Division. Bottom line, this team is scary good. When the Gamblers beat the Stars 5-2 in Lincoln back on 12/18/09, I was very impressed with how they played as a team. They have the guys who can put the puck in the net and play great defense, but they also have the guys who can intimidate and create mayhem on the ice. The Gamblers play a style of hockey that should be familiar to Stars fans. The Gamblers intimidate, play great team defense, have solid goaltending, and score goals by the boatload. If I had to pick one team right now to win the Andy and the Clark Cup, I’d pick the Gamblers without thinking twice. GB Head Coach Jon Cooper has turned the Gamblers franchise completely around in the few years he’s been there. Two seasons ago they were the worst team in the USHL. After his arrival, they’ve been competing for the Andy and Clark cups every season. On the ice, the Gamblers are led by forwards Anders Lee, Reed Seckel, and Ryan Furne. Reed Seckel is a guy who is very dangerous, due to his ability to beat you with his fists, or beat you with his offensive ability. Gamblers goaltender Steve Summerhays recently tied the USHL all-time record for consecutive wins with 18. Summerhays has an almost unhuman (dare I say, “Reekie-like”) record of 24-2-1, with a goals against average of 2.16, and a .911 save percentage. This team is stacked.

The game Saturday night against Green Bay will also mark the return of former Stars forward David Gerths. Gerths was traded from Lincoln to Green Bay earlier this month in exchange for Gambers forward Sam Alfieri, and a first round draft pick. Gerths played a total of 86 games for Lincoln the past two seasons, accumulating 52 points along the way. In four games with Green Bay this season, Gerths has been held scoreless, but he has put an impressive 15 shots on goal in those four games. Gerths was a fan favorite during his time in Lincoln, and I know the fans at the IceBox will give him a warm welcome. I hope the GB coaches insert Gerths into the starting lineup so that the Lincoln fans can give him a good round of applause.

On Friday night, the Stars will be without the services of forward Ryan Dzingel and defenseman Austin Handley due to a USHL sanctioned one-game suspension for their part in the Lincoln/Tri-City line brawl on 2/12. With forwards Brent Tate and Josh Berge on the injured reserve list, and with one spot still “open” on the roster (more on that later), the Stars will again be short-handed Friday night. Luckily, the Stars should have a healthy bench on Saturday night when they face the Gamblers. I’d be happy if the Stars could get two points out of these two weekend games, but it’s going to be tough….as it is every weekend. The Muskies are in the process of scratching and clawing their way back into that last playoff spot in the USHL West Division, while the Gamblers are simply the best team in the USHL. Despite their record, the Stars have shown that the term “quit” is not in their vocabulary. They’ll have to play at the top of their game, and play smart hockey, to beat these two teams. I hope we see a full IceBox this weekend, and show the rest of the league that despite our record, we are still the best fans in the USHL.

A reminder, the starting time for the Saturday night game against Green Bay has been moved to 8:05pm. The IceBox will still open its doors at 6:00pm, with limited concessions available, but the game won’t start until 8:05pm. The time change was due to the University of Nebraska men’s basketball game starting at 7:00pm at the Devaney Center. Hopefully the late start time will alleviate the traffic nightmare normally experienced when the two teams are playing at the same time.

Go Stars.

Roster note:  According to Brent Wagner of the Lincoln Journal Star, the Stars have added defenseman Frank Misuraca to the roster, although he won't be in the lineup until early March.  Misuraca ('91) is 5'11", 190 pounds, and is playing prep hockey in CT.  According to the article linked above, Coach McGroarty has not seen Misuraca play in person.

Like a number of other Stars fans, I was really hoping the Stars would fill the last roster spot with affiliate defenseman Dakota Mermis, little brother of Stars forward Jarrod Mermis.  Dakota was very impressive at the Stars tryout camp last June, considering how young he was ('94).  The Stars brought Dakota up for two games this season last December, where he scored one assist and was +1, but he hasn't played for the Stars since.  It is my understanding that if the Stars didn't play Dakota in at least 10 games this season, Lincoln would then lose him to the 2010 USHL Entry Draft.  I hope I'm wrong, because I believe he could turn out to be a VERY good hockey player.  If anyone out there has any more information about this, please feel free to leave a comment.  Thanks.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Jimmy Siers Commits to Brown University


Click here for the USHL article.

Even though Jimmy Siers isn't on the Stars roster, I thought this story was worth blogging about considering how much of a fan favorite Jimmy was during his time in Lincoln.  He was one of those guys who played every shift like it was his last.  He is a player you couldn't help but root for, and I'm very happy to see him land at a very good school.  BellTolls wrote an article about Jimmy back in November of last year in which he brought up the fact that Siers had a 4.0 grade average in high school.  To get into an Ivy league school like Brown University is no small task.  It takes smarts, and Jimmy obviously has them.

Congrats to Jimmy!  Well deserved.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

B³ Post-Game Recap 2/13: Lincoln 1, Youngstown 2 OT Shootout

Click here for boxscore.

This recap is going to be very brief.  I'm going to spend the day with Mrs. Yeti on this Valentine's Day. :)

Fittingly on St. Valentine's Day eve, the Lincoln Stars lost another heart breaker at home, this time to the Youngstown Phantoms by a score of 2-1 in OT shootout.  Stars goaltender Matt Green played extremely well in regulation and in overtime, stopping 39 of 40 shots.  However in the shootout, Youngstown scored on each of their first four attempts to beat the Stars and give them their first win in eight games.  Stars forward Ryan Dzingel scored the lone goal for the Stars against the Phantoms.  The lone regulation goal for Youngstown came while they were shorthanded two players on a 5-on-3 Stars powerplay (ouch).

The Stars return to action this Friday night at the IceBox when they will take on the Sioux City Musketeers.  On Saturday night, the league-leading Green Bay Gamblers will invade the IceBox.

Note:  I ran across this youtube video today of the Lincoln/Tri-City line brawl from Friday night's game.  Enjoy.  You'll probably want to mute the sound because Nickleback sucks. :)

Saturday, February 13, 2010

B³ Post-Game Recap 2/12: Lincoln 2, Tri-City 5


Boxscore

The Lincoln Stars lost their fourth straight road game, as the Tri-City Storm used three third period goals to skate past the Stars in Kearney, 5-2. The Stars came out very strong in this game, outplaying the Storm in the first period and out-shooting them 15-5. However, Stars goaltender Matt Green could not stop one of those 5 shots and the Stars found themselves down 1-0 at the first intermission. In the second period, Stars forward Brodie Reid scored a powerplay goal to even the game at 1-1, but the Storm answered later in the second to pull ahead 2-1 going into the second period. In the third period, it was all Tri-City as the Storm outscored the Stars 3-1, and won the game 5-2.  The two teams combined for a total of 200 penalty minutes in the game.

In the second period of this game, a gong show line brawl broke out which saw numerous fights including a goalie tilt between Stars goaltender Jared Coreau and Storm goaltender Carsen Chubak.  Stars goaltender Matt Green started the game for the Stars, but was pulled by the coaches after giving up the second Storm goal in the game.  24 seconds after Coreau replaced Green in net, the line brawl occurred so Coreau only saw 24 seconds of action last night before being thrown out of the game.  I would suspect Coreau will be suspended for the game against Youngstown tonight, which is a shame.  Personally, I thought Coreau deserved to start the game last night against the Storm considering how well he had played as of late.  I understand that Matt Green beat the Storm the last time these two teams faced off against each other, but I've always been of the opinion that you stick with a "hot" goaltender.  It is unknown how many other Stars players involved in the line brawl will be suspended for the game tonight against Youngstown. 

The Stars outshot the Storm 40-27, but they could not solve either of the two Storm goaltenders last night.  I'm not sure I agree with Coach McGroarty's comments after the game last night in which he stated, "Tonight we were outstanding.  I'm actually shocked we lost. I really am."  It seemed to me that this was another game in which the Stars got frustrated after outplaying a team early on, lost composure, and in turn lost the game.  Unfortunately, we've seen that a lot this season.

The Stars will look to get back on track against the struggling Youngstown Phantoms tonight at the IceBox.  Faceoff is at 7:05pm.

Go Stars.

Friday, February 12, 2010

B³ Live Blog - Lincoln Stars vs. Tri-City Storm

Join us Friday night as we follow the Stars against the Tri-City Storm in Kearney.  We will be online and chatting around 6:45pm.  Faceoff is at 7:05pm. 

Go Stars.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

B³ Weekend Preview - Tri-City and Youngstown

 

The Lincoln Stars will look to build upon their 5-2 victory over the Sioux Falls Stampede this past Tuesday with an away game against the Tri-City Storm on Friday night, and a home game against the Youngstown Phantoms on Saturday night.  As mentioned, the Stars are coming off an impressive home win against the 'Pede which snapped Lincoln's seven game losing streak.  With the win Tuesday night at the IceBox, the Stars improved to 12-24-6 (30 points), and are still in last place in the USHL West Division.  

The Stars will travel to Kearney this Friday night to take on the Tri-City Storm.  The Storm sport a 20-17-6 (46 points) record, and are in fourth place in the USHL West Division.  The Storm are coming off an impressive road swing last weekend in which they shutout league-leading Green Bay 2-0, and then beat the Cedar Rapids Roughriders in OT, 3-2.  The last time the Stars and Storm faced-off against each other, it was the Stars who proved victorious with a 6-2 thumping of the Storm on their home ice on 1/20.  In that contest, the Stars line of Ammon-Peterson-Berge combined for 4 goals and 3 assists to power the Stars over the Storm.  Since that game, former Tri-City captain Josh Berge has been sidelined with a knee injury, and will not play against his former team.  With that home loss fresh on their minds, and the fact that the Storm are fighting for a playoff spot in the USHL West Division, I expect the Storm to play like their hair was on fire in this game.  The Stars will need to play smart hockey early on if they want to win this game.  Get the early lead, play smart hockey, and finish strong.

On Saturday night, the Stars will host the USHL East Division Youngstown Phantoms.  This match-up will feature two last place teams looking to fight their way out of the cellar.  The struggling Phantoms have a record of 14-24-2 (30 points), and have lost 12 out of their last 14 games.  Youngstown made a splash early on this season with tons of offense and penalty minutes, but as the season progressed, the Phantoms found themselves scoring less, losing more, and consequently fell in the standings.  The Stars are 3-0 against the Phantoms this season, with one win in Lincoln, and two wins in Youngstown.  The last time these two teams faced each other in Lincoln on 10/16/09, the Stars won a wild back-and-forth game by a score of 7-6 in overtime.  In that contest, the two teams combined for 13 goals and 131 penalty minutes.  The two teams certainly gave the fans a show that night, and I wouldn't be surprised if the same kind of game transpires Saturday night.  Youngstown leads the USHL in penalty minutes with 1180, but Lincoln is right behind them in second place with 1076.  Don't blink Saturday night, you might miss something.

A team fighting like mad to keep their head above water, and a team sinking like a rock.  Can the Stars put together two wins against these two teams going in opposite directions?  Will the "Young Guns" on the Lincoln roster continue to impress?  Will the game Saturday night turn into a gong-show?  Can Jared Coreau continue to stand on his head?  Did Stars Head Coach Jimmy McGroarty find a warm body before the USHL roster freeze to replace Garrett Clement on the roster?  Will I lose another hat this Saturday night?  Why am I asking so many questions?  Stay tuned, faithful reader.

Go Stars.

Note:  We will be blogging live here at the Friday night for the game against the Storm.  We will be online and chatting around 6:45pm.  Please join us if you can!  I will post the live blog article sometime tomorrow afternoon.


USHL Expansion - Muskegon Lumberjacks

Well, the worst kept secret is now official.  The Muskegon Lumberjacks IHL franchise is folding after this season, and a new USHL franchise will take its place for the 2010-11 season.  The team will still be called the "Muskegon Lumberjacks," according to the article linked below.  I'm not sure if the USHL team will use the same Lumberjacks logo as you see pictured to the left, which is the current logo of the IHL team in Muskegon.

I hope the hockey fans in Muskegon give the USHL a legitimate chance at succeeding in their city.  If you read the comments at the end of the article linked below, you'll see that some fans aren't too excited about the USHL style of hockey.  You have to remember that the fans there have had pro hockey the past 50 years, so the idea of junior hockey is something brand new to some of them. 

Click here for article.

With the addition of the Muskegon Lumberjacks and the Dubuque Fighting Saints next season, the USHL will grow to a total of 16 teams.  This means the USHL could decide to go a three or four division system, which would look like:

EAST: Youngstown, Indy, Team USA, Muskegon, Chicago
CENTRAL: Green Bay, Waterloo, Dubuque, Cedar Rapids, Des Moines
WEST: Sioux City, Sioux Falls, Fargo, Lincoln, Tri City, Omaha

or

SOUTH: Tri-City, Lincoln, Omaha, Des Moines
NORTH: Fargo, Sioux Falls, Sioux City, Waterloo
CENTRAL: Cedar Rapids, Dubuque, Green Bay, Chicago
EAST: Indiana, Youngstown, Team USA, Muskegon

Personally, I'm a fan of the three division system.  What say you?  How would the playoffs work with a 3 or 4 division system?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Snapshots of the Game - Stampede at Stars 2/9

It's been a little while since I've posted a snapshot of the game, so I'm going to try to make up for my laziness and post a couple of great pictures taken from the Tuesday night game against the Sioux Falls Stampede.  Thanks go out to Brandon Anderson, official photographer of the Lincoln Stars.  The first shot is of the crowd, just after a Stars goal and the silly string is in mid-flight.  The second shot is of Stars goaltender Jared Coreau, who stopped 36 of 38 shots on goal in the victory.  I don't know why, maybe it's because he's so tall, but Coreau looks like some kind of Transformer in that shot.  Anyway, thanks again to Brandon Anderson for letting me use these pictures on the blog.  Go Stars.



Post-Game Recap 2/10: Sioux Falls 2, Lincoln 5


Boxscore:  Sioux Falls 2, Lincoln 5

On "Throwback Night" at the IceBox, the Lincoln Stars played one of their better games at home this season and skated to a 5-2 victory over the visiting Sioux Fall Stampede, ending their seven game losing streak.  The Stars got off to a quick 2-0 start in the first period when forward Dominik Shine scored twice within 5 minutes.  The 'Pede jumped back into the game with two goals of their own in the first period to even the game at 2-2 going into the second period.  After that, it was all Lincoln.  Dominik Shine completed the hat-trick (I hope you like my hat, Dominik!) with his third goal of the game early on in the second period to give the Stars a 3-2 lead.  Lincoln forward Ryan Dzingel provided the insurance goal for the Stars later on in the second period on the powerplay to give Lincoln a commanding 4-2 victory going into the second intermission.  Late in the third period, forward Brodie Reid scored an empty-net goal to seal the win for Lincoln and send the IceBox into a frenzy.

Although the Stampede were able to put 38 shots on net, Stars goaltender Jared Coreau stopped 36 of those 38 shots to record his sixth win of the season.  I thought Coreau played outstanding, and was a big reason why the Stars were able to hold the Stampede to zero powerplay goals on 5 opportunities.  The penalty kill unit for the Stars has struggled mightily as of late, but Lincoln's PK unit played extremely well against Sioux Falls.  Not to take anything away from the players who received stars last night, but I thought Coreau was certainly deserving of one of the three stars.  It was great to see Coreau finally get a win after all the close games he's been involved with the past couple of weeks.  He continues to play his best hockey of the season, and I hope the coaches continue to start him.

"Puck luck" certainly hasn't been on the side of the Stars this season, especially at home.  That was not the case last night.  I'm not sure exactly how many posts the Stampede hit last night, but it was quite a few.  We've seen the Stars get the short end of the stick in terms of lucky bounces, but it seemed as if everything went right last night for Lincoln.  That's not to take away from the effort of the Stars last night.  They battled ALL night long.  There is no quit in this team, and that was evident last night.  They might be in last place, but I truly don't believe that the Stars play like a last place team.  They were out there busting their butts, and as a fan, that was really fun to watch.  It was a total team effort.

It was fun to watch the young guys (Dzingel, Shine) work together last night.  McGroarty mentioned after the game that those two "had a little magic."  The future is certainly bright for the Stars.  There is still the rest of this season to play, but it's impossible for me not to get excited about the future.  I'm not sure if defenseman Will Rayner will return next season or continue on to play collegiate hockey at UMASS-Lowell, but he is getting better every game.  I thought he played extremely well last night.  He's a guy who is more than competent to step up in the offensive zone to make a play, but he's also very steady and in control in the defensive zone.  An added bonus, he can hit like a truck.

Although it wasn't a sellout, a lively crowd of 3,011 were treated to one heck of a game.  Even with the empty seats, the crowd was as loud as I've heard all season at the end of the game.  It was a lot of fun to watch the players celebrate the big win at center ice, doing the "choo-choo."  You could see the smiles on their faces.  As a fan, it doesn't get better than that.  I was proud of their effort, as was the other 3,000 fans in attendance.  I tossed my favorite Stars hat onto the ice after Shine's third goal, but it was totally worth it.  Great win.


Go Stars.

Note:  According to Brent Wagner of the Lincoln Journal Star, Stars assistant coach Jon Bellonio resigned from his position earlier this week.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Pre-Game Report: Sioux Falls at Lincoln Stars 2/9

The Lincoln Stars will try to break out of their current seven game losing streak this Tuesday night at the IceBox, as the Stars host the Sioux Falls Stampede.  The Stars have a record of 11-24-6 (28 points), and are in last place overall in the USHL.  The Stampede are currently 22-8-9 (53 points) and are in third place in the USHL West Division.  The Stars have not won a game since their 6-2 blowout win against the Tri-City Storm on 1/20.  Meanwhile, the Stampede have won four out of their past five games since losing 10-1 to the Cedar Rapids Roughriders on 1/22.

This will be the fourth time this season the Stars and Stampede have faced off against each other.  In their past three meetings, the Stampede have outscored the Stars 8-0.  Yes, that is correct.  The Stars have not scored at all against the Stampede this season.  Stampede goaltender Clay Witt is 2-0 against the Stars this season with two shutouts, while his backup Lino Chimienti is 1-0 against the Stars with one shutout.  Stars goaltenders Matt Green and Jared Coreau both have respectable stats against the Stampede this season, but as we've seen throughout the season, neither goaltender has received any substantial offensive support from their teammates.  The Stampede offense received a shot in the arm this past weekend with the acquisition of forward Mark Anthoine from the Chicago Steel.  Anthoine has scored 39 points (21g, 18a) in 39 games this season.

The USHL trade deadline was this past Sunday, and the Stars continued to make moves to bolster their roster for next season.  Forward David Gerths was traded to the Green Bay Gamblers for forward Sam Alfieri and a first round draft pick (entry draft).  Defenseman Garrett Clement was sent to the Omaha Lancers for defenseman Matt Wahl, who will be attending Brown University in the Fall.  Coach McGroarty mentioned after the Des Moines game Saturday night that there were draft picks coming from Omaha in that Clement-Wahl trade also.  I believe those are futures draft picks, not entry draft picks.  Also, forward Jon Puskar (one of my favorites on the team) was traded to the Waterloo Blackhawks for "future draft picks," whatever that means.  If anyone knows exactly what the Stars received for Puskar, please leave a comment. Coach McGroarty also mentioned that affiliate forward Chris Delmauro would be joining the team for good.  DelMauro has played 3 games for the Stars this season, scoring one goal.

Of the next 10 games for the Stars, 9 will be played at home.  Normally, the Stars would welcome a long home stand, but this season has certainly not been "normal" for anyone associated with the organization.  Lincoln is a surprising 4-11-2 at home this season.  The Stars last won at home on 1/15 against the Indiana Ice.  The last home win before that?  Way back on 11/14/09 against the Waterloo Blackhawks.  

Despite this nightmare season, it's evident to me that this Stars team is not giving up.  They were down 4-1 against the Des Moines Bucs this past Saturday night, yet rallied to take a 5-4 lead before losing in the shootout.  The playoffs may be a distant dream, but the players have shown they will not roll over and stop fighting.  That's encouraging to me, and I hope other Lincoln fans recognize this.  It's important we still sellout the IceBox and show these players that we have their back, regardless of their record.  The Stars still lead the USHL in average attendance per game, which is also encouraging.  I'd hate to see the fans stay away just because the Stars are struggling this season.  I know I sound like a broken record, but the players need our support more than ever.  9 of the next 10 games are at the IceBox.  Let's pack the house.

Go Stars.

Note:  According to the Lincoln Stars website, there will be a "one-night only return of Silly String at the Ice Box and rollback prices on selected concession items for this special weeknight game."  Silly string was banned at the IceBox back in the late 90's, so I'm guessing the Stars management got approval from the USHL to bring it back for just this game.  For those of us who remember silly string during the first few seasons, it was something fun to watch the fans do.  Messy, but fun.  I'm not sure what concession items specifically will have the "rollback prices."

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Live Blog - Lincoln Stars at Des Moines Buccaneers 2/6

 Join us tonight as we blog live during the Stars vs. Bucs game.  Faceoff for the game tonight is 7:05pm, so we'll be chatting live around 7:00pm, or a little before.  I hope to have a good turnout again tonight.  Stop by this evening and root the Stars to victory over the Bucs!

Go Stars.

Edit:  Stars lose their seventh straight game, falling to Des Moines 6-5 in overtime-shootout.  The Stars battled back from a 4-1 deficit to take a 5-4 lead, only to lose in the shootout.

Roster News:  The Stars traded defenseman Garrett Clement to the Omaha Lancers for defenseman Matt Wahl.  Stars forward Jon Puskar was traded to Waterloo for draft picks.


Friday, February 5, 2010

2/5 - Lincoln Stars at Team USA U-18 Game Thread

Obviously we won't be having a live blog today, but I will be near a computer and will be able to approve comments pretty quickly after they're posted (starting at 2:30...that's when my class starts :)).

So although it won't be the same, feel free to leave comments periodically throughout the game. I should be checking it at least every couple minutes or so, starting at 2:30. Think of it as live blogging on tape delay.
Let's go Stars! Get a W!

Edit:  Click here to follow the game on Pointstreak.

Post-Game Report: Lincoln Stars 2, Team USA 5

Click here for boxscore.

I don't have a lot of time today to write up an article for this game, so this recap will be brief.  The Stars lost their fifth straight game as Team USA U-17 took advantage of Lincoln turnovers and skated to a 5-2 victory.  Scoring goals for Lincoln was Ryan Dzingel and Garrett Peterson.  Due to injuries on the U-17 squad, six players from the U-18 team played for the U-17 squad last night.  Despite outshooting Team USA U-17 43-33, the Stars could only put two pucks past U-17 goaltender Matt McNeely.  In their past five games, the Stars have been outscord by the opposition 17-5.  With the loss, the Stars fell to 11-23-5 (27 points).

This one was a surprise to me.  Considering how the U-17 team has struggled against USHL competition this season, I really thought the Stars would win this game.  Again, the Stars put a ton of shots on goal, but can only put two past goaltender Matt McNeely.  The U-17 did have some help with the six U-18 players in the lineup, but Lincoln turnovers resulted in too many odd-man rushes for Team USA.  The Stars will play the U-18 team this afternoon at 2pm central.  The U-18 team is much better than the U-17 team, so it will be interesting to see how the Stars respond.

**Roster News:  According to Pointstreak, Stars defenseman Nate Baumbick was traded to Witchita Falls of the NAHL.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Live Blog - Lincoln Stars at Team USA U-17

Join us as we blog live during the game against Team USA tonight.  We'll start the chat around 6:00pm tonight, so I hope to see you all there.  For those of you who might not be familiar with our live blogs, I use an application from CoverItLive (which you see below) which allows fans to talk to each other while we listen to the game on the radio, or watch it on B2.  You don't need to sign up for anything to chat.  Simply type in your name and post away.  It can be a lot of fun to interact with other Stars fans during the game.

I hope to see a good turnout tonight.  Go Stars!


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Weekend Preview - Team USA and Des Moines


The Lincoln Stars will go back on the road this weekend to take on Team USA, and the Des Moines Buccaneers.  In a rare Thursday night game, the Stars will face the U-17 Team USA squad.  The next afternoon, the Stars will battle the U-18 Team USA squad in a matchup that will start at 2pm central.  Lincoln will wrap up their brief road trip Saturday night in Des Moines against the Buccaneers.  The Stars have a record of 11-22-5 (27 points) and are in last place in the USHL.

Before we get to the match-ups,  the big news this week was trade of Stars forward David Gerths to the Green Bay Gamblers for forward Sam Alfieri and a first round draft pick.  Gerths has struggled this season to score goals, so hopefully this trade will allow him to thrive on a very good Green Bay team that should compete for both the Anderson and Clark Cups.  It seems as if Coach McGroarty is looking to next season with this trade, as Alfieri should play for the Stars this season and next, and the first round draft pick should help Lincoln build for the 2010-'11 season.  Good luck to David in Green Bay.

Up first for the Stars this weekend is Team USA, based out of Ann Arbor, Michigan.  The casual USHL fan might not know this, but the Team USA organization that is competing in the USHL this season is actually two teams.  First we have the U-17 team, which consists of players under 17 years of age.  I don't know the exact numbers, but this specific team has played the majority of games in the USHL this season.  Obviously, this team is VERY young but very skilled, considering their young age.  At the beginning of the season, this team was consistently getting blown out by USHL competition.  As the season progressed, this team has gotten much better, although they still lose more games than they win.  Players to watch for Team USA U-17 are forward Rocco Grimaldi, defenseman Robbie Russo, and goaltender John Gibson.

The other Team USA squad playing in the USHL this season is the U-18 team, which are players under the age of 18.  Now this team is the real deal, as they frequently beat collegiate hockey teams around the nation.  There is a huge disparity in talent between the two USA squads, so the Stars will certainly have their hands full with the U-18 squad.  Just last weekend, the U-18 Team USA squad beat the Waterloo Blackhawks by a score of 10-2.  I expect the Stars to play well and win against the U-17 team, but they could struggle against the U-18 squad.  Players to watch for Team USA U-18 are forwards Brandon Saad, Austin Czarnik, and goaltender Jack Campbell.  Team USA has a record of 12-21-4 (28 points), good enough for last place in the USHL East Division.

Saturday night the Stars will travel to Des Moines, Iowa to take on the Buccaneers.  The Bucs have a record of 15-21-3 (33 points) and are in sixth place in the USHL West Division.  Des Moines has struggled this season, but this is a team that can be very dangerous at home.  The Bucs are an offense first type of team and are well equipped to score goals in bunches.  However, Des Moines has struggled on the defensive side of the ice.  The Bucs have surrendered 166 goals so far this season, which is tops in the USHL.  Des Moines is led by forwards T.J. Tynan, Ryan Walters, and H.T. Lenz.  The Bucs trio have combined for 134 points in 39 games played this season.  The Stars can't afford to get into a shootout with a team like Des Moines.

Of the six points up for grabs this weekend, I think the Stars have a good chance of getting four if they play like they have of late.  I'm hopeful that the roster events of this week don't interfere with the psyche of this team, but that's why they play the game.  Goaltender Jared Coreau is playing his best hockey of the season, but he hasn't received any help.  Let's hope the Stars find a way to bury some biscuits this weekend against two teams who have had trouble stopping pucks.

Go Stars.

**Note:  The Thursday night game against Team USA will start at 6:05pm central.  We will be blogging live for that game, so make sure you drop by the blog tomorrow night to chat with other Stars fans during the game.  The Friday afternoon game against Team USA will start at 2:05pm central.  Because of the start time, we will not be blogging live for that game.  The Saturday night game in Des Moines will start at 7:05pm, and I hope to be blogging live for that game.  Stay tuned.

David Gerths traded to Green Bay

Thanks to "Jofa" for providing this tip.

According to the Green Bay Gamblers website, Stars forward David Gerths has been traded from Lincoln to Green Bay for Gambers forward Sam Alfieri, and an "undisclosed draft pick."  Here is an exerpt from the article on the Green Bay website:
The Green Bay Gamblers of the United States Hockey League (USHL) have acquired Lincoln Stars forward David Gerths in exchange for forward Sam Alfieri and an undisclosed draft pick.

Gerths, who was named to the USHL Western Division All Star team in 2009 and again in 2010, ranked fourth on the Stars in scoring with 16 points. The Ankeny, Iowa native was also a member of the 2008 and 2009 United States Select Team that captured back-to-back gold medals at the World Junior “A” Challenge. Gerths is committed to Notre Dame.

The USHL trade deadline is Saturday, February 6th, so I thought something could happen this week in regards to player movement on the Stars.  Gerths will certainly be missed by the fans in Lincoln.  Although his point totals this season have dropped compared to last season, David was always one of the hardest working players on the ice.  The kid has a huge heart, and the Stars will certainly miss his effort on the ice.  Good luck to him in Green Bay.  David will go to a VERY good Green Bay squad, so hopefully he will find his scoring touch with them.

Meanwhile, Sam Alfieri ('91) is a 5'11", 176 pound forward from Buffalo, NY.  Alfieri has scored 16 points (7 goals, 9 assists) in 34 games with the Gamblers this season.  Before coming to Green Bay, Alfieri played hockey for Shattuck-St. Mary's in Faribault, MN.

We'll have to wait and see what the "undisclosed draft pick" turns out to be.  I'd guess that it would be a first or second round USHL Entry Draft pick, but who knows at this point.

So what do the fans think about this latest move made by the Stars?  Will there be more trades coming before the 2/6 deadline?

Edit:  According to Brent Wagner of the Lincoln Journal Star, the "undisclosed draft pick" mentioned in the Gamblers article is a first round draft pick.