This Week in Avalanche Prospects

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 10: Goalie Semyon Varlamov #1 of the Colorado defends the goal as Jordin Tootoo #22 of the Nashville Predators looks to control the puck and Stefan Elliott #46 of the Colorado Avalanche helps defend at the Pepsi Center on January 10, 2012 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images)

The Monsters started a four game road trip this past week in the state of Texas. A couple of prospect defensemen swapped places. The Avalanche waved good-bye to their 2006 draft class. Boston University and Boston College get ready for the Beanpot. Duncan Siemens is involved in a scary incident. More news and notes in this edition of TWIAP.

The Lake Erie Monsters welcomed back defenseman Tyson Barrie from the AHL All-Star Classic, as they embarked on their four game road trip, which began in San Antonio. Barrie had a goal for the Western Conference as his club beat the Eastern Conference in a shoot-out 8-7. Former Avalanche farmhand, TJ Hensick, had a goal and an assist in the Classic, to go along with a goal in the shoot-out for the Western squad.

The Monsters opened their road trip with a 3-1 win over the San Antonio Rampage on Friday. Luke Walker, Greg Mauldin, and newly acquired Danny Richmond scored for the Monsters. Gerald Coleman continues his solid play in Cedrick Desjardins absence and made 41 saves in the game.

Things did not go as well for the Monsters on Saturday as they gave up a three goal lead to the Houston Aeros and lost in a shoot-out 5-4. Lake Erie received two goals from Justin Mercier in the game, as well as scores from Greg Mauldin and Luke Walker. The Monsters shooters came up empty in the shoot-out as they lost 2-0. Greg Coleman stopped 29 shots in the contest.

Earlier in the day, it was announced that defenseman Tyson Barrie had been recalled to the Colorado Avalanche. Barrie is expected to make his NHL debut on Tuesday night, when the Avalanche host the Chicago Blackhawks. Stefan Elliott, who had spent 30 games with the Avs, was reassigned. Elliott produced four goals and seven assists before being sent down. He did suit up in Lake Erie's loss to Houston.

This past week saw the Avalanche trade center Mike Carman to the Washington Capitals for defenseman Danny Richmond. Carman had three goals and three assists for the Monsters in 28 games this season. A valuable penalty killer, Carman could not find his groove offensively in an injury riddled season for Lake Erie.

Carman's departure is also worth noting, as he was the last remaining player from the Avs 2006 draft class. Forward Chris Stewart was traded to the St. Louis Blues last year. Avs traded Nigel Williams to the New York Rangers in the summer of 2009, and he is now toiling the minors with his third organization.

Codey Burki, after a successful junior career, flamed out in the minors due to injury and lack of production and spent last season in Europe. Defenseman Kevin Montgomery spent parts of two seasons with the Lake Erie Monsters before being shipped off to the Edmonton Oilers organization last year. Lastly, goaltender Billy Sauer spent only one professional season with the Avalanche in the minors after spending four years at the University of Michigan. He has had stints with a few ECHL clubs this season.

The 2012 Beanpot starts tonight, with its familiar participants of Boston College, Boston University, Harvard, and Northeastern. Harvard won the first Beanpot tourney back in December of 1952, when they beat Boston University 7-4. Boston University has the most Beanpot titles at 29. Boston College had a thrilling 7-6 overtime win over Northeastern to take last year's title.

For BU's Kieran Millan and BC's Paul Carey, this year's tournament marks the last for the two seniors. The outlook for both teams for national tourney bids looks strong. Boston University and Boston College rank first and sixth in the PairWise respectively. Still, fewer things get the blood boiling than a rivalry and a potential match-up in the Beanpot final a week from tonight.

If you want to check out the Beanpot festivities, both games will be available on NESN. Boston University will face Harvard at 3:00 PM MST and for the 6:00 PM MST night cap, it will be Boston College versus Northeastern.

Our last story takes us to Saskatoon, where the Blades lost 7-2 on Saturday night to the Medicine Hat Tigers. What was more distressful than the scoreboard, was the loss of captain Duncan Siemens in the first period. Near the end of the frame, Siemens was checked from behind by Tigers forward Brendan Hurley. Hurley was given a five minute major and game misconduct penalties. Siemens did not return to the game and may have suffered a concussion.

Tough note to end this post on, but that is all for this week ladies and gentlemen! Next week, a recap of the Monsters last two games of their four game road trip. The Minnesota Gophers will be in Denver this weekend to face the Pioneers and we'll see who will be facing off in the Beanpot final. Plus, more news and info from around college hockey and the Canadian Hockey League.

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