This Week in Avalanche Prospects

BUFFALO NY - DECEMBER 28: Tyson Barrie #22 Ryan Johansen #19 Brett Connolly #28 and Brayden Schenn #10 of Canada celebrate Barrie's goal in the third period against the Czech Republic during the 2011 IIHF World U20 Championship game between Canada and the Czech Republic at the HSBC Arena on December 28 2010 in Buffalo New York. Canada won 7-2. (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)

The Lake Erie Monsters have had a rough start to say the least, but back-to-back wins have given the team renewed confidence. Boston College is the number one ranked team in Men's Division I college hockey, but the Golden Gophers are also off to a hot start. A little Monsters and college hockey in this week's short, sweet, and late night edition of TWIAP.

Three losses to open the season at home and a 0-2-1 record to begin a five game road trip does not a good start make. Yet, perhaps some overtime magic from a couple of rookie defensemen will begin a turn around and the 0-5-1 start will become a distant memory.

The first of two overtime victories came on Saturday in Syracuse as Stefan Elliott scored the game winner. A pretty good way to score your first professional goal. Not to be out done by his fellow 2009 draftee, Tyson Barrie did one better on Sunday in Toronto. He scored a power play goal for the Monsters in the second period and scored the game winner in the overtime session, also on a power play.

The Monsters will begin a three game home stand this week in which they play host to Syracuse and Toronto (wait, didn't they just play these guys?)

In college hockey, the Boston College Eagles find themselves as the number one ranked team in the nation. BC is 5-1, with their lone loss coming to the University of Denver (yeah I had to mention it). Paul Carey has had a solid start to his senior campaign; plenty of time on the power play and skating on the top line for the Eagles. The Weymouth, MA native has compiled a goal and four assists.

Arch-rival Boston University is 2-2 overall in the early going. Edmonton native, Kieran Millan, has started all four games for the Terriers this season and has posted a goals against average of 3.27 and save percentage of 0.903. Both BU and BC will take turns facing off against Massachusetts and UMass-Lowell this weekend.

In Minnesota, the five game winning streak, of the Gophers, to start the season came to an end this past Sunday by the Vermont Catamounts. Kent Patterson has started all six games for the Gophers and has been solid throughout despite the loss on Sunday.

Sophomore Nate Condon, who recorded only 17 points last year, already has seven points this season. Increased ice time and responsibility certainly hasn't hurt. The Gophers split a weekend series against non-conference opponent Vermont. This weekend, the Gophers travel to Anchorage for a two-game set with the Seawolves.

Sorry for the shorter post this week and the delay. Some CHL love next week...I promise!

(NOTE: Please keep in mind this was written before Lake Erie's 7-0 loss to Syracuse on Wednesday night. I'll post my thoughts about that in next week's edition.)

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