Nebraska Omaha has suffered its first major injury blow of the season, it has been reported, with junior forward Brock Montpetit out for another three to five weeks following a collision during Dec. 15’s game against Minnesota State.
Montpetit told the Omaha World-Herald‘s Rob White that the end of January is a best-case scenario for his return after cracking two bones in his left leg and spraining that ankle.
In that Dec. 15 game against the WCHA’s purple Mavericks, Montpetit hyperextended his ankle after his own momentum and contact from an MSU player caused him to collide with the frame of one of CenturyLink Center’s nets. The aforementioned diagnosis was made after X-rays were taken on the leg earlier this week.
The Somerset, Wis. native is second on the team with 12 assists, and has 13 points in all. He also holds a plus-6 rating so far this season and has won 56.3 of his faceoffs, which is the best on the team among players who have taken more than three draws per game.
In fact, Montpetit is UNO’s only true center, although fellow forward Dominic Zombo has thrived in that role so far this season with seven goals and 11 assists of his own.
UNO is off this week for the holiday break and has another off-week in January. However, with UNO into the meat of its schedule, this isn’t a great time for the Mavericks to experience their first big injury setback of the season.
The Mavericks are in the middle of an 11-game stretch between Dec. 1 and Jan. 11 where UNO has been made to face, all in a row, the following opponents: Fourth-ranked Minnesota away; No. 16 St. Cloud State away; No. 18 Minnesota State at home; No. 9 Quinnipiac away; Colorado College at home; and No. 14 Denver.
Starting Feb. 1, UNO’s schedule becomes a lot easier. The Mavericks’ regular season slate is capped off with home games against Michigan Tech and seventh-ranked North Dakota in February, and Wisconsin on the first two nights of March.
Away games between the start of February and the beginning of the WCHA postseason see the Mavericks go to Alaska Anchorage and Minnesota Duluth. Both UAA and UMD are in currently in the bottom of half of the league standings.
UNO, currently ranked No. 12 in the USCHO.com Men’s Division I poll, went 11-6-1 overall and 7-4-1 in the league over the first half of the season.