2001-02 MIAC Men's Hockey Athletes of the Week

March 5, 2002
University of St. Thomas junior defenseman Drew Palmgren (Blaine, Minn.) had five points in the Tommies' two wins that secured the 2002 MIAC playoff championship. He had a goal and three assists in Friday's 5-1 victory over Concordia-Moorhead. In Saturday's title game vs. Gustavus, the Tommies trailed 2-0 before Palmgren scored midway through period one to pull UST within 2-1. They came back to win 3-2 and are in the NCAA playoffs for the third time in four seasons. The 22-5 Tommies will play at UW-Superior Wednesday (7 p.m.).

February 18, 2002
Saint John's University senior forward Mike Possin (St. Cloud, Minn./Cathedral HS) had two goals and eight assists for 10 points in a weekend sweep of Bethel. Possin scored one goal and three assists in a 11-2 win on Feb. 14, in St. Cloud. On Feb. 15, Possin scored one goal and five assists in a 7-1 win for the Johnnies. On the season, Possin leads the team with 28 assists and 41 total points. With the weekend sweep, SJU improves to 14-9-2 overall, 9-5-2 in the MIAC and claims the number four seed in the MIAC playoffs.

February 11, 2002
Gustavus Adolphus College sophomore goaltender Dan Melde (Maplewood, Minn./St. Paul Johnson HS) turned in two terrific performances in the nets to help the Gusties claim a 4-1 win and a 2-2 tie against St. Mary's last weekend. Melde recorded 28 saves and allowed one goal in the 4-1 win in St. Peter on Friday night. He then turned away 34 shots and allowed two goals in the 2-2 tie in Winona on Saturday night. After allowing two goals in the first period, he shut the Cardinals out for the remaining 40 minutes of regulation and five minutes of overtime. Melde improved his conference record to 6-2-2 with a goals against average of 1.75. Gustavus improved to 8-3-3 in MIAC play.

February 4, 2002
Gustavus Adolphus College first-year forward Joe Ulwelling (Warroad, Minn.) scored three goals and dished off four assists for seven points to help the Gusties sweep Hamline, 5-3 and 9-4 in a key MIAC series last weekend. On Friday, Ulwelling tallied one goal which turned out to be the gamewinner at 4:59 of the second period as the Gusties claimed a 5-3 win in St. Paul. On Saturday, Ulwelling scored two goals (including the gamewinner) and recorded four assists as Gustavus exploded for a 9-4 win in St. Peter. Ulwelling has scored 18 points (6g, 12a) in 19 games for the Gusties this season. Gustavus is currently in second place in the MIAC with a record of 7-3-2.

January 28, 2002
Augsburg College junior goaltender Peter Samargia (Gilbert, Minn./Eveleth-Golbert HS) -- Returning to the Auggie lineup after back spasms forced him to miss the Jan. 19 game against Hamline, Samargia stopped 69 of 72 shots he faced (.958 save percentage) as Augsburg swept second-place St. Mary's to vault back into the MIAC playoff race. Samargia stopped 37 of 39 shots in Augsburg's 4-2 win at St. Mary's on Friday, then made 32 saves on 33 shots (including a stretch of 23 in a row) in Augsburg's 4-1 home win on Saturday. Augsburg has won its last six games in a row over the Cardinals and is unbeaten in its last 11 starts against the Cardinals, dating back to the 1996-97 season. This season, Samargia has a 3.03 GAA and .900 save percentage, with a 6-6-3 record.

January 21, 2002
Saint Mary's University's junior forward Todd Hangge (Rochester, Minn. / Rochester John Marshall) was named the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference men's hockey player fo the week, it was announced Monday. Hangge scored five goals as the Cardinals split their MIAC series with league-leading St. Thomas. Hangge, who entered the series with just one goal in the Cardinals' first 15 games, netted his first collegiate hat trick as SMU snapped a seven-game (0-6-1) winless streak vs. the Tommies with a 6-2 victory on Friday. Hangge followed that effort up by scoring both of SMU's goals in Saturday's 4-2 loss to UST. With the split, the Cardinals moved to 11-4-2 overall and 6-1-1 in the MIAC and remained in second place in the race for the MIAC regular-season title. For the season, Hangge has scored six goals and added six assists for 12 points.

January 14, 2002
Saint Mary's University sophomore forward Jason Fillipp (Fox River Grove, Ill.) scored three goals and added an assist for a team-leading four points in the Cardinals 5-0, 7-2 sweep of Bethel last weekend. Fillipp scored a pair of goals in SMU's shutout win on Friday, then added a goal and an assist as the Cardinals rallied from a 2-0 deficit with seven unanswered goals in Saturday's 7-2 victory. For the season, Fillipp leads the team in goals (9) and points (20), and is second in assists (11). With the two wins, the Cardinals remain the only team in the MIAC without a loss (5-0-1) and their 11 points put them in second behind league-leading St. Thomas (7-1-0).

January 7, 2002
University of St. Thomas junior goaltender Bob Tallarico (West St. Paul, Minn./Henry Sibley HS) got a win as a starter and one off the bench in the Toms' two victories over UW-Eau Claire and Stevens Point. In Friday's 4-2 win over the Bluegolds, he stopped 21 of 23 shots. In Saturday's 5-4 win over Point, he came on at 3:14 of period one and UST trailing 2-1 and stopped 32 of the next 34 shots in the last 57 minutes. Tallarico has allowed just 14 goals in his nine victories. The Toms are 12-3 overall, including a 5-0 mark in December vs. NCHA teams.

December 17, 2001
St. Thomas senior forwards Tony Lawrence (Vadnais Heights, Minn.) and Eric Wenkus (Eden Prairie, Minn.) have been named Co-MIAC Men's Hockey Players of the Week. The Tommie senior linemates each scored two goals and added two assists, accounting for all four UST goals, in Friday's 4-3 road win at No. 5-ranked UW-Superior. The Yellowjackets had won nine in a row, including a 7-2 win over the Tommies on Nov. 18 and a 6-0 mark vs. MIAC teams. Wenkus scored two first-period goals for a 2-0 lead. Lawrence scored the tying goal late in the second period and the eventual winning goal early in the third period. In the Tommies' 9-2 start, Lawrence has 20 points (10 goals-10 assists) and Wenkus has 18 (7-11).

December 10, 2001
Gustavus Adolphus College sophomore goaltender Dan Melde (Maplewood, Minn./St. Paul Johnson HS) turned in two sparkling performances as the Gusties split two games against NCHA opponents. On Friday, Melde made 28 saves to help the Gusties defeat UW-Eau Claire 3-2 in Eau Claire. On Saturday, Melde turned away 21 shots as the Gusties were edged by nationally ranked UW-Stevens Point 1-0 in Stevens Point. Melde has been sensational the last two weeks turning away 114 of 1 18 shots and allowing only four goals as the Gusties have claimed 2-1 and 3-0 wins over Augsburg and a 3-2 win over UW-Eau Claire and 1-0 loss to UW-Stevens Point. Melde has compiled a record of 5-4-0 overall with a goals against average of 2.20 and a save percentage of .931. The Gusties are currently 5-5-0 overall and 4-2-0 in the MIAC.

December 3, 2001
Hamline University junior wing Troy Kleven (Crookston, Minn.) racked up seven points in leading the Pipers to a two-game MIAC sweep of Bethel last weekend. Kleven tallied two goals and one assist in Friday's 4-2 win, then improved on that total in the rematch, netting three goals and one assist in a 7-4 Saturday victory. Kleven's effort was part of a Hamline first line that exploded for 20 points in two games.

November 26, 2001
Saint John's University senior forward Rick Talbot (Anoka, Minn.) had five goals and one assist in two non-conference wins in Elmira, N.Y. In a 5-2 win over Williams, Mass., on Nov. 24, Talbot scored two goals, including the game-winner at the 10:00 mark of the third period. In an 8-7 overtime win over Elmira, N.Y. on Nov. 25, Talbot recorded three goals and one assist, including the game-winner at the 2:44 mark of overtime. On the season, Talbot now has six goals and three assists. SJU is 4-4 overall, 1-3 in the MIAC.

November 12, 2001
University of St. Thomas junior goalkeeper Bob Tallarico (St. Paul, Minn./Henry Sibley HS) stopped 41 of 42 shots with no margin for error and held Gustavus to 0-for-9 on power-play opportunities as St. Thomas swept the Gusties 1-0 and 2-1 to improve to 4-0 in the MIAC and on the season. In last weekend's sweep of St. John's, Tallarico made his St. Thomas debut and stopped 44 of 49 shots in a 3-2 and 5-3 sweep of St. John's. Tallarico, who played the last two seasons at Division I Bemidji State, is 4-0 with a 1.50 GAA and a .934 save percentage. The Tommies have won 13 consecutive regular-season games dating back to January 2001.