These preseason notes from Thursday’s News Tribune:
Minnesota Duluth senior winger Cody Danberg of Canwood, Saskatchewan, will be out for about four months following knee surgery Aug. 17 to repair the medial meniscus in his right knee.
Danberg said the injury came after a team run as he bounced a tennis ball to a partner, twisting the knee. Recovery takes three to four months and heâ€™s not expected to be able to play until January.
â€œItâ€™s a pretty rough way to start the season, but Iâ€™m going to push to get back as soon as I can. This is going to be one of our best teams and I want to be a part of that,â€ Danberg said.
Danberg was the left winger on UMDâ€™s third line in the playoffs last season. He has eight goals and 10 assists for 18 points in 99 career games. He will wear a full-length knee brace and be on crutches until Oct. 4.
The UMD men donâ€™t start official on-ice practice until Oct. 2, but are taking part in captainâ€™s practices this week at the schoolâ€™s campus rink. Division I coaches are allowed to be on the ice with their teams for two hours a week.
The ice at the DECC will be put in following Sunday nightâ€™s Toby Keith concert and the Bulldogs expect to skate there Tuesday.
The UMD women begin official on-ice practice at 1:30 p.m. Monday. The Bulldogs will be without players Haley Irwin, Laura Fridfinnson, Jocelyne Larocque and Jessica Wong, and assistant coach Laura Schuler, who will be at Canadaâ€™s National Team camp for five days starting Wednesday in Calgary
The defending Division I champion UMD women have a home exhibition Oct. 1 with the Minnesota White Caps and open the season Oct. 8 at North Dakota.
The UMD men open the season Oct. 8 at Lake Superior State in Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.
New strength coach
UMDâ€™s head strength and conditioning coach Justin May, after 10 years with the schoolâ€™s hockey programs, will be working in other areas in 2010-11, including added administrative duties in fundraising, he said this week. May, 34, will continue to oversee conditioning schedules for the schoolâ€™s 14 varsity sports.
Blake Palmer has been hired as the strength and conditioning coach for the hockey programs and the equipment manager for the womenâ€™s team. He spent the past three years as conditioning coach for Waterloo (Iowa) in the U.S. Hockey League, while also serving as equipment manager for two of those years.
Palmer, a native of Northwood, Iowa, earned an exercise science degree from Northern Iowa in 2006 and a masterâ€™s degree in exercise physiology in 2008.
â€œIâ€™ve been passionately involved with UMD sports from the beginning, and I enjoyed my time with the hockey teams and appreciate the friendships I made,â€ May said. â€œMy new duties will give me a chance to grow as an administrator.â€