Nanooks keep Governor's Cup at UAF

Fernanda Chamorro/Sun Star
Feb. 28, 2012

UAF Nanooks had several opportunities to tie during the first half of the game. Colton Beck misses a shot in front of the Seawolves' goalkeeper Chris Kamal in the Fairbanks Carlson Center on Feb 25 2012. Baptiste Haentjens / Sun Star

“What’s a Seawolf?” chanted the UAF fans as Nanooks kept the gold at home after taking on the Seawolves and smashing them in the last game of the Alaska Airlines 2012 Governor’s Cup series held Feb. 24-25.

The Nanooks fought hard against the Anchorage Seawolves at the Governor’s Cup Opener Friday, but lost the battle 3-2.

Nearly 90 students paid the $30 fee to ride the bus to Anchorage and attend the game, according to Student Activities Assistant Murial Berg, who thanked them for being on their best behavior.

In Anchorage’s Sullivan Arena, the Nanooks were up 1-0 in the first period. The second period was a game-changer. The Seawolves killed the Nanooks’ spirit with three goals that went unchallenged until the last period. UAA received a penalty shot when senior defenseman Aaron Gens tripped Seawolf Kory Roy, but Roy missed the shot. Four seconds later, their puck was in UAF’s net. In the third period, after many missed attempts, junior forward Adam Henderson’s play was reviewed and confirmed a goal. Nanooks lost 3-2. 

Nearly 4,600 screaming fans came out to be part of the sellout crowd. UAA scored the first goal during the second period. UAA rarely shot, but senior goalie Scott Greenham blocked 14 of their 15 attempts.

Once the Nanooks got their first puck in, nothing could stop them. UAF scored three unmatched goals, winning 3-1. A shootout would decide the fate of the 2012 Cup as the tie-breaker for the champions after the third period of the final game, giving Nanooks a chance to smoke the Seawolves Saturday at the Carlson Center. The shootout was in overtime, during which the coaches selected four players from their teams to take shots at the opposing team’s goalie. UAF sophomore Colton Beck, junior Andy Taranto, and junior Nik Yaremchuk conquered the net 3-2 and kept the gold home for the Nanooks’ third consecutive Governor’s Cup win.

Seven of the senior 2012 Governor’s Cup champions walked in to a conference room full of supporters. When asked at the conference if it was part of Ferguson’s plan to put his best shooters out on the ice, he replied, “I don’t care who they are as long as they’re scoring.”

“Fairbanks is a hockey town and it really showed it tonight,” senior defenseman Cody Butcher said. “I love it up here.”

Special Projects Coordinator for the U.S. Geological Survey John “Jack” Townshend, 85, ended the conference with the dedication of his song.

“You have given us plenty to be thankful for, your talents are what we need. Thank you for being so wonderful to see,” Townshend sang.

“We certainly like the governor’s cup and it needs to stay in Fairbanks,” Ferguson said

The regular season is over, but Nanooks can look forward to the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs this weekend as they face the Lake Superior State Lakers first in Sault Saint Marie, Mich.

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