Archive for January, 2019

Atlantic Hockey Notebook: January 27

Sunday, January 27th, 2019

Here are the current Atlantic Hockey standings:

  1. AIC
  2. Air Force
  3. RIT
  4. Niagara
  5. Mercyhurst
  6. Bentley
  7. Army
  8. Robert Morris
  9. Sacred Heart
  10. Canisius
  11. Holy Cross

Here’s a look at what happened this past weekend, when 10 of the 11 teams in Atlantic Hockey were active.

Air Force Beats Robert Morris Twice: The Falcons topped the Colonials both night by a score of 3-1. Kieran Durgan, Evan Feno and Kyle Haak scored for Air Force on Friday, while Alex Tonge had the lone Robert Morris goal. Haak scored again on Saturday, while Walker Sommer and Brady Tomlak also registered goals. Jacob Coleman had Saturday’s goal the Colonials. Billy Christopoulos stopped 35 of 37 shots faced in the wins. At the other end, Francis Marotte made 45 saves but lost both games.

RIT Tops Army Twice: The Tigers beat the Black Knights 4-2 on both Friday and Saturday. Erik Brown, Gabe Valenzuela, Jake Hamacher and Regan Seiferling all scored in Friday’s win. Hamacher added a pair of goals the next night; Brown also scored in Saturday’s win, as did Shawn Cameron. Zach Evancho, Michael Wilson, Brendan Soucie and Taylor Maruya all scored for Army over the weekend. Ian Andriano stopped 61 shots over the course of the two games for RIT; Jared Dempsey had 23 saves on Friday for Army, while Trevin Kozlowski stopped 21 of 24 shots faced Saturday.

Bentley Continues Streak vs. Canisius: More about Bentley’s impressive streak to come, but the Falcons topped the Griffs twice this weekend by scores of 4-2 and 3-1 to extend their unbeaten streak to seven games. In both games, the teams remained scoreless until the second period. Tanner Jago opened the scoring Friday, with Jakov Novak, Jonathan Desbiens and Drew Callin also adding goals. Matt Hoover had both Canisius goals. On Saturday, the Griffs struck first (Nick Hutchison) but Bentley got three straight (Luke Santerno, Jake Kauppila, Desbiens) to secure the win. Aidan Pelino had 50 saves in the two games.

Sacred Heart, Holy Cross Split: The Pioneers, powered by five different goalscorers, beat the Crusaders 5-2 on Friday. Ryan Steele opened the scoring, while Mike Lee, Austin Magera and Nick Boyagian all scored within five minutes of each other in the third period. Vito Bavaro also added a goal, while Josh Benson had 20 saves. Kevin Darrar and Spencer Trapp had the goals for Holy Cross in Friday’s loss; Tommy Nixon had 27 saves. The next night, the Crusaders came out on top 4-1 thanks to goals from Ryan Leibold, Michael Laffin, Darrar and Anthony Vincent. Sacred Heart’s lone goal was scored by Marc Johnstone. Benson had 12 saves in the loss, while Holy Cross’ Erik Gordon made 32 saves.

Mercyhurst, AIC Split Weekend: The Lakers beat AIC 4-2 on Friday before dropping a thrilling 8-5 decision the following night. On Friday, Mercyhurst got goals from Joseph Duszak (2), Dalton Hunter and Jonny Lazarus. Brennan Kapcheck and Chris Theodore scored for AIC. Stefano Cantali recorded 24 saves in the win, while Zackarias Skog made 17 saves at the other end.

Saturday’s game was a bit more intense. AIC took a 2-0 lead on goals by Blake Christensen and Martin Mellberg before Mercyhurst got on the board with a goal from Duszak, his third of the weekend. The Yellow Jackets scored two more (Kyle Stephan, Justin Cole) before the Lakers struck again (Joshua Lammon). AIC then got three straight goals (Christensen, Luka Maver, Shawn McBride) – with just over 13 minutes left in regulation. The Lakers scored three times in a span of just over six minutes (Tommaso Bucci, Jonny Lazarus, Dalton Hunter), but the Yellow Jackets also added one more (Joel Kocur) to secure the win.


Atlantic Hockey Notebook: January 24

Thursday, January 24th, 2019

Here are the current Atlantic Hockey standings:

  1. AIC (+2)
  2. Air Force (-1)
  3. Niagara (+3)
  4. Mercyhurst (-2)
  5. RIT (-1)
  6. Army (-1)
  7. Robert Morris (0)
  8. Bentley (0)
  9. Sacred Heart (0)
  10. Canisius (0)
  11. Holy Cross (0)

Who’s Hot: The AIC Yellow Jackets won all three games they played over the past week and a half. They beat Sacred Heart 2-1 on January 15, then shut out Holy Cross 2-0 two nights later. The Yellow Jackets then beat the Crusaders on Saturday in the second half of the series, capturing a 3-2 win. Zackarias Skog backstopped AIC to all three wins, stopping 72 of 75 shots faced. Elsewhere, Niagara beat Mercyhurst twice this past weekend, outscoring the Lakers 12-7. Those were some much-needed wins for the Purple Eagles, who hadn’t won in…. well, a while. Those wins also helped bump them up three spots in Atlantic Hockey standings, putting them in a top-three position; junior forward Ben Sokay led the team with four points over the pair of games – the first time he’s had points in back-to-back games since December 2017.

Finally, you’ve got to give credit to Bentley, who has a five-game unbeaten streak going. They tied RIT in the opening game of last weekend’s series before beating them the next night.

Who’s Not: Holy Cross lost twice to the aforementioned AIC Yellow Jackets; those losses snapped a three-game unbeaten streak for the Crusaders. Meanwhile, Mercyhurst’s pair of losses to the Purple Eagles bumped them down a couple spots in the conference standings.

Who’s… Hanging Out: Canisius and Robert Morris split their weekend series. In non-conference action, Army beat the Royal Military College 5-2, while Quinnipiac topped Holy Cross 4-1 in a midweek matchup. Finally, Air Force fell to Sacred Heart before tying them the next afternoon.

This Weekend’s Action: We’ve got weekend series between Robert Morris and Air Force in Colorado; Army West Point visits RIT, and Holy Cross and Sacred Heart face off. AIC travels to Mercyhurst for a pair of games, and Canisius hosts Bentley for a series. There are about six weeks left in the Atlantic Hockey regular season, and every game is going to be critical for playoff standings going forward.

Atlantic Hockey Notebook: January 14

Monday, January 14th, 2019

Here are the current Atlantic Hockey standings:

  1. Air Force
  2. Mercyhurst
  3. AIC
  4. RIT
  5. Army
  6. Niagara
  7. Robert Morris
  8. Bentley
  9. Sacred Heart
  10. Canisius
  11. Holy Cross

Who’s Hot: The RIT Tigers climbed three spots in Atlantic Hockey standings, thanks to a pair of wins over AIC this past weekend. Overall, RIT has won three in a row and hasn’t lost a game since December 8. They’re on their way up, but will face a hot Bentley team this coming weekend. Speaking of….

Bentley beat Robert Morris twice this weekend, outscoring them 10-3 in the pair of games. Those two big wins were Bentley’s first conference action of 2019 and first since December 1. Thanks to those wins, the Falcons moved up two spots in Atlantic Hockey standings.

The Crusaders of Holy Cross, meanwhile, haven’t lost since January 4. Since then, they’ve beaten Mercyhurst once (a 5-4 victory) and tied and beaten Niagara. The Crusaders may still be at the bottom of Atlantic Hockey, but they’re only two points from bumping both Sacred Heart and Canisius down in the standings. What they do going forward could help move them out of the basement.

Mercyhurst’s Lakers beat Canisius twice this past weekend, which helped move them up to second place in Atlantic Hockey standings. Those two wins are helping turn things around for ‘Hurst, who had previously split a series against Holy Cross after dropping a pair of games to Ohio State to finish out the 2018 calendar year.

Who’s Not: AIC dropped both of its games to RIT this past weekend, by scores of 6-3 and 3-2. Overall, the Yellow Jackets have lost five of their last six games dating back to December 30. These losses have brought them down in the standings, from the top of Atlantic Hockey last week to third this week. While there’s still time to make up those losses and grab some points in the final few weeks of the season, they need a strong finish if they hope to be in the top of the conference at season’s end.

Canisius followed up their stellar wins over North Dakota by losing twice to Mercyhurst this past weekend, by scores of 6-2 and 6-3. The Griffs were outplayed in both games, and their goaltending struggled. These losses dropped them all the way to 10th in Atlantic Hockey, certainly not where Trevor Large and co. would like to be at this point in the season.

Niagara hasn’t won a game since December 7 – which is obviously not good for the Purple Eagles. They tied and lost to Holy Cross this past weekend, and they’ve dropped a few games lately in the final minutes. These strings of non-wins have dropped them all the way to sixth in Atlantic Hockey, a place they’ll try to dig out of starting this weekend against Mercyhurst.

Robert Morris, meanwhile, have dropped four straight games, including the pair to Bentley this past weekend. They let the Falcons put up five goals in each of those games and have overall allowed 22 goals against in the last four games. Ouch!

Finally, Sacred Heart only played one game this past weekend, dropping a 3-1 decision to Yale. The Pioneers haven’t won since December 8, falling to Vermont, AIC and Yale in the stretch since then. They’ll hit a busy stretch here with eight games in the next 19 days, starting with a battle against the Yellow Jackets Tuesday night.

Army, Air Force Tie: In the ever-heated battle of Army West Point vs. Air Force, the winner is…. no one. The two teams tied twice this past weekend (say that five times fast). The score each game: 2-2. The weekend series marked the return to conference action for both teams; Army hadn’t played an Atlantic Hockey team since their bout with Canisius way back on December 1. Since then, they lost to Dartmouth, Brown and RPI.

Atlantic Hockey Notebook 1/9

Thursday, January 10th, 2019

It’s been a busy week and a half in Atlantic Hockey, between non-conference action against teams like the University of North Dakota and Vermont, and in-conference action between foes like RIT and Niagara and Holy Cross and Mercyhurst.

Here are the current Atlantic Hockey standings:

  1. AIC
  2. Air Force
  3. Niagara
  4. Mercyhurst
  5. Army
  6. Robert Morris
  7. RIT
  8. Canisius
  9. Sacred Heart
  10. Bentley
  11. Holy Cross

Here’s a look at what each team did this past week:

AIC: The Yellow Jackets fell to UMass 6-1 on Saturday, January 5, but rallied back with a 6-5 win over conference opponent Sacred Heart on Tuesday, January 8. Captain Shawn McBride had the lone goal in the loss to UMass. The Yellow Jackets held on for a win against the Pioneers despite giving up three straight goals in the final 25 minutes of play. Martin Mellberg had a hat trick, while Jeff Baum, Tobias Fladeby and Kyle Stephan also scored. They’ll now prepare to host RIT for a pair of games this upcoming weekend.

Air Force: The Falcons dominated St. Lawrence on Friday, beating them by a decisive 7-1 score. Air Force scored six straight goals before giving up one. Evan Giesler and Kyle Haak each scored twice. Kieran Durgan, Evan Feno and Walker Sommer also scored. They followed it up with a 4-1 loss to Western Michigan University as part of the Ice Vegas Invitational in Las Vegas, Nevada; Matt Koch had the lone goal. It’s an exciting weekend ahead as Air Force hosts Army for a pair of sold-out games.

Niagara: It was a rough weekend for the Purple Eagles. They managed to tie RIT 4-4 on Friday but fell to the Tigers the following night, 2-1. Luke Edgerton had a pair of goals Friday, while Niko Kovachis and Ludwig Stenlund also scored. Kovachis also scored Saturday on the power play, the lone goal in the loss. Niagara gave up the game-winning goal on the man advantage with just two seconds remaining in regulation – a heartbreaker of a loss. They’ll hit the road this weekend for a series against Holy Cross.

Mercyhurst: The Lakers split their series with Holy Cross this past weekend, beating them 4-3 before falling 5-4 the next night. Joseph Duszak had a hat trick in Friday’s win, while James Anderson also added a goal – which Duszak assisted on. Duszak also scored in Saturday’s loss. Taylor Best, Derek Barach and Joshua Lammon  had the other goals for the Lakers. Mercyhurst will now take on a home-and-home with Canisius.

Army: The Black Knights had just one game this past weekend, a 2-1 overtime loss to non-conference foe RPI in Troy, NY. Brendan Soucie had the only goal for Army, while Jared Dempsey made 28 saves. They’ll hit the road this weekend for a pair of games against Air Force in what should be a thrilling matchup as usual.

Robert Morris: Robert Morris lost both of their non-conference games this past weekend, dropping decisions to Brown (7-4) and St. Cloud State (5-2). Grant Hebert had a hat trick on Friday; Eric Israel also scored. On Saturday, goals came from Nick Prkusic and Nick Lalonde. They’ll host Bentley this weekend for a series.

RIT: The Tigers tied with Niagara on Friday 4-4 before beating them the next night, 2-1. Alden Dupuis scored twice Friday, with Abbott Girduckis and Will Calverley also adding goals. RIT scored twice on the man advantage. On Saturday, Girduckis had the opening goal for the Tigers. Niagara tied it in the third period, but RIT stole the game with just two seconds remaining in regulation, as Adam Brubacher scored the game-winner on the power play. They’re back in action this weekend with a pair of games against AIC.

Canisius: The Griffs were named the CHN Team of the Week after beating North Dakota twice over the past weekend. Canisius pulled off upsets by scores of 3-1 and 2-1 despite being outshot badly in both games. Grant Meyer had a goal in each game, while David Parrottino, Cameron Heath and Felix Chamberland also scored. Goaltenders Blake Weyrick and Matt Ladd combined for 78 saves. The Griffs will now look to feed off those big wins in the home-and-home against Mercyhurst this weekend.

Sacred Heart: The Pioneers fell 3-2 to non-conference Vermont. Ryan Steele and Jordan Kaplan had the goals for Sacred Heart, including one on the man advantage. Kaplan also had an assist. They also fell to AIC, 6-5, on Tuesday. The Peioneers got goals from five different players: Ryan Steele, Nick Boyagian, Austin Magera, Vito Bavaro and Marcel Godbout. They’ll face another tough opponent this weekend, playing Yale on Saturday.

Bentley: The Falcons tied non-conference Dartmouth this past Saturday, 3-3. Jonathan Desbiens scored a pair of goals in the tie. Drew Callin also notched a goal as the Falcons overcame a 2-0 deficit. Aidan Pelino made 24 saves. They’ll return to Atlantic Hockey action this weekend in the series against Robert Morris.

Holy Cross: Though they’re last in Atlantic Hockey, Holy Cross held their own this past weekend against Mercyhurst. They fell 4-3 on Friday but received goals from Michael Laffin, Matt Slick and Conner Jean. They then beat Mercyhurst 5-4 the following evening thanks to a late goal from Kevin Darrar. The Crusaders scored four straight en route to the win. Spencer Trapp, Johnny Coughlin, Peter Crinella and Neil Robinson scored. Three of Holy Cross’ five goals came on the power play. They’ll host Niagara for a pair this weekend.

ECAC Notebook: 1/9

Wednesday, January 9th, 2019

Despite minimal conference games, the last few weeks have told us a ton about a lot of teams in the ECAC. Mainly there have been some positives, but many more setbacks as teams have tried to get back in a rhythm of playing regular games. The highlights of non-conference play, thus far, have been Union’s win over St. Cloud, who is second in the pairwise, and Clarkson’s recent win over Minnesota Duluth. The Golden Knights seem to be trending in the right direction and are certainly a team to watch going forward.

In terms of the Pairwise, Quinnipiac is fifth, while Union (15), Clarkson (16), Cornell (17), Yale (20) and Harvard (22) are bubble bound. If any of those bubble teams can pick up wins in the second half, it could mean good things for their chances of getting to the tournament come March. That said, the .477 winning percentage of league teams against the other conferences will make it tough for teams to break into the top-15.

As teams head into a more consistent conference schedule, it seems like teams like Clarkson, Brown and Harvard are trending in the right direction, while Quinnipiac, Yale and Dartmouth are trending down a tad. On Brown, we have to give them credit for the job they are doing in recent weeks…
The Bears are 4-1-2 in their last seven games and over the weekend won the Three Rivers Classic. They could have beat Providence, as well, just last week but fell just short., mainly because a questionable PC goal was allowed to stand.