The second week of the NCAA season sees Dallas' two collegiate prospects continuing to trend in opposite directions.
Shore played in Maine's one game of the week against the University of Massachusetts. Centering a line with Ryan Lomberg and Josh Henke, he again came up short on the score sheet. Shore did go 7 for 13 on the face-off dot, which is a positive for him. He also had a few shots on net, but none went in or seemed to cause much havoc. His linemates did have numerous chances on the night, which bodes well for Shore since he is responsible for setting them up in the offensive zone. If he continues giving his wingers opportunities at the net, pucks will start going in.
It's hard to judge Shore's performance since his team only played one game over the weekend. It's a bit disturbing that he's continuing an early season trend of not coming up with points against bad teams. The University of Massachusetts is a perennial bottom feeder in Hockey East and doesn't make much noise in the NCAA. The Minutemen are a team Shore should be able to victimize with his strength and playmaking ability, but for whatever reason, things aren't going his way early in the season. We'll see if his luck starts to turn.
Unlike Shore, Alex Guptill has come into the season really strong for the University of Michigan. In two games against the University of New Hampshire, one of the better teams in the country, Guptil scored one goal. His goal tied their second game of the weekend at 9:40 of the first period. I was updating the scores during the game and at one point the sheet said he scored another goal, but it was later taken away. While he didn't get the second, it's still a good indication that he's been around the play on offense and has been causing a lot of damage for other teams.
Alex Guptill seems to be proving any doubters wrong early in this season. After being benched for the first game, he's been on a tear and has been a positive factor in all three of the games he's played for Michigan. It will be interesting to see if he can keep his play up and if he can stay in the lineup. If he can, it looks like he could be a big time breakout prospect for the Stars. Mot top NCAA prospects head to the pro ranks after their second or third years in college, so if his disciplinary issues are behind him and he continues scoring at a near point per game pace, don't be surprised to see him in Texas next year. It is still early, however, and Guptill still has a lot of work to do, which seems to have been a weakness for him in the past. So we'll keep a close eye on his progression throughout the season.