Missing last week's exhibition game against Lethbridge didn't put University of Minnesota junior Sam Warning behind the curve.
Warning was named the Ice Breaker Tournament MVP following Saturday's 3-2 win over #13 New Hampshire in the title game. He scored two goals and two assists in two games for the #5 Gophers this weekend, which also included a 6-0 victory over Mercyhurst.
Minnesota's tournament victory was reflected on the Ice Breaker All-Tournament team. 4 of the 6 players named were Gophers. That included the Gophers' entire top line of Warning, Kyle Rau (1G-3A) and freshman Hudson Fasching. Fasching, a Los Angeles Kings draft pick, scored his first collegiate goal Saturday to tie the game at 1 in the second period.
Despite falling short Saturday, the Wildcats held a monopoly on the All-Tournament team blue line. Eric Knodel and Trevor van Riemsdyk represented New Hampshire after the team went 1-1 on the weekend. Knodel scored a goal in both games (UNH also defeated Clarkson 4-1 Friday) while van Riemsdyk had 3 assists.
The Ice Breaker Tournament traditionally opens the season with four teams from four different college hockey conferences. This year's participants were Clarkson (ECAC), Mercyhurst (Atlantic Hockey), Minnesota (Big Ten) and New Hampshire (Hockey East).
Minnesota hosted the 2013 Ice Breaker at Mariucci Arena following two seasons at neutral sites. Next year's Ice Breaker will be hosted by Hockey East school Notre Dame in South Bend, Indiana. The Gophers, along with Minnesota-Duluth (NCHC) and RPI (ECAC) will participate.
The full 2013 Ice Breaker All-Tournament team:
G- Adam Wilcox (Minnesota)
D- Eric Knodel (New Hampshire)
D- Trevor van Riemsdyk (New Hampshire)
F- Sam Warning (Minnesota)
F- Kyle Rau (Minnesota)
F- Hudson Fasching (Minnesota)
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Nathan Wells is a college hockey columnist for SB Nation and College Hockey News. You can also follow him on Twitter -- Follow @gopherstate