Ok, this isn’t UND news, but it is rather interesting.
Apparently, SCSU sophomore goaltender Zach Driscoll has left SCSU and returned to Omaha of the USHL. Things like this aren’t unusual. Driscoll is the third goaltender from a major program to do this (Tomek of UND and Jurusik of Wisconsin the other two).
There’s a number of interesting tidbits in this article and rumors around Omaha regarding Driscoll and his path to this point.
First, he hasn’t ruled out returning to the Huskies after this upcoming season in the USHL. That’s unusual, to me. The only case of this actually happening (to my recollection) is UND’s forward Quinn Fylling, who did it in 2001-2002. He did not have the best of years in St. Cloud, but neither did SCSU as a team, to be fair.
Their incoming goaltender, David Hrenak (Green Bay of the USHL), does seem to have a lot of potential and some hype coming onto campus. I got to watch Hrenak play first hand for one game when I traveled up to Green Bay, WI to watch the Lancers get defeated two games in a row at the hands of the Gamblers. Hrenak played pretty well against a, to be brutally honest, bad Omaha team. He only allowed 1 goal. That being said, he served as a part of a goaltending rotation in Green Bay with Russian goaltender Maxim Zhukov (who, mark my words, will be drafted highly in 2018 and WILL make the NHL someday).
Anyways, lack of playing time was the reason Driscoll left St. Cloud. He felt he could get more time developing in Omaha. However, I’m not sure that this is going to be the case. He walks into Omaha knowing that Omaha’s other goaltender, former NTDP U17 goaltender (and former UND commit) Keegan Karki, will unquestionably take a decent portion of ice time away from Driscoll. This means goaltender rotation, and that can’t possibly be what Driscoll had in mind. I’ve read some rumors, especially since Omaha currently lists 3 goaltenders (including Driscoll and Karki) on their roster, that suggest that Driscoll may sooner or later be on the move. It’s not very common in the USHL to have a team carry 3 goaltenders.
Personally, it is surprising that he came back to Omaha and not back to Penticton (BCHL). A lot of rumors flew regarding Driscoll’s departure from Omaha to Penticton a few years back, including one that suggested that the Lancers coaching staff, was struggling to adequately coach the style of goaltending Driscoll practiced. In any regards, as a fan, I was upset he went to Canada as I thought, that year Driscoll played with Omaha, he was the better goaltender than former Lancer (and current UNO Maverick) Kris Oldham. Yes, I’m well aware, that the stats state otherwise.
I’m interested to see how this plays out, as I am with Tomek. Will Driscoll return to SCSU? I’m betting not, but that’s just my opinion.