|BG's Hammond out indefinitely (02-09-13)|
|Written by KEVIN GORDON Assistant Sports Editor|
|Saturday, 09 February 2013 09:30|
Bowling Green goalie Andrew Hammond is out indefinitely, the result of a knee injury suffered in practice Wednesday.
The senior was injured when his knee popped out twice during a drill that had the goalies sliding from side to side
"It's a short-term thing where he's got hockey to be played yet this year and I think it's going to be during the regular season; that's as of today," BG coach Chris Bergeron said after Friday's 2-1 victory over Michigan State.
Bergeron said Hammond has been receiving two treatments a day for the injury. He hasn't practiced since getting hurt.
BG has seven regular-season games left before the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs start March 7.
"He seems to be making good strides on a daily basis. He'll be back as soon as possible. He is getting stronger,'' Bergeron said.
Hammond had started 22 of BG's first 28 games this season, posting a 2.52 goals-against average and a .917 save percentage.
But he's been superb of late, recording a 2.14 goals-against average and a .932 save percentage. He's 8-4-2 in that span.
"He was scared," Bergeron said. "He thought this might have been the way he was gong to end his career at Bowling Green."
The injury is Hammond's second of the season after he hyperextended his elbow 29 seconds into the series opener at Colgate Oct. 19. He missed three games because of that injury.
CHANGE: The athletic directors in the Western Collegiate Association approved a change Friday in its playoff format for next season.
The playoffs will include only the top eight teams in the league, BG athletics director Greg Christopher said.
The format for the first round will be No. 8 at No. 1, No. 7 at No. 2, No. 6 at No. 3 and No. 5 at No. 4.
Originally, the WCHA had approved a playoff format that included all 10 teams with the Alaska schools playing each other in the first round, regardless of where they finished in the standings. The Alaska pairing was made for financial reasons since the WCHA was scheduled to pay for cost of travel in the playoffs.
The Alaska schools will now pay for the plane tickets for teams to travel to Alaska for the playoffs or for their own airfare if they're on the road for the first round of the playoffs, Christopher said.
However, teams visiting Alaska will still have to pay for own meals and hotels.
The change was made to protect the integrity of the playoff bracket and the regular season.
The change still needs final approval from the league's presidents.
SCHEDULE: The WCHA will play a 28-game league schedule next season.
Individual schools have received a list of schools they'll play at home and on the road, although the schools don't have the dates for those games. The schedule had to be redone after Alabama-Huntsville was approved as the league's 10th member last month.
The league also has developed scheduling partners. Teams will play their partner four times each season (two home, two away). Teams will play five opponents four times each, and four opponents twice each for the 28 games.
The partners are: BG-Huntsville, Lake Superior-Ferris State, Northern Michigan-Michigan Tech, and Minnesota State (Mankato)-Bemidji State, and the Alaska schools.
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