Did You Know: The Clarkson Hockey program has amassed 10,001 goals since the 1920-21 season?

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Puckman Bonesawed

He never saw it coming.
Normally we wouldn't care about what happens at RPI, but according to INCH, RPI is planning on removing Puckman from the RPI uniforms, and decreasing his capacity in the RPI hockey program. Puckman was one of the funnier mascots in the league and his antics and resemblance to a Necco wafer will be missed.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Women Tie Princeton ; Men Fall to USA

The Clarkson women's hockey team took 3 points on the road with a 1-1 tie Saturday afternoon in Princeton, New Jersey. Ashley Shaidle scored her third goal of the season on a delayed penalty call in the first period. Carlee Eusepi and Katie Morrison assisted. Princeton tied things up in the second, and that's how it ended. Kira Hurley made 23 saves. The Knights are now 3-3-2 and are at home against Harvard and Dartmouth next weekend.

The men's team lost to the USNPDT-U18's, 6-2, Saturday night in a contest that featured 52 penalty minutes, all on minor penalties. The USA scored the first four goals of the contest, Clarkson rallied back late in the first with goals from Shawn Weller and Shea Guthrie, but Clarkson could not find the net after the first period and the USA added on two more goals. Freshman Matt Smith got the start in net, but was replaced by David Leggio in the second. Smith finished with eight saves and Leggio ended up with eight saves as well. Clarkson travels to Harvard and Dartmouth this weekend to open their ECACHL season.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Men's Preview - Team USA @ Clarkson ; Women Defeat Quinnipiac

After starting the season 4-1-1 the Clarkson Golden Knights face off against the USNPDT-U18's tonight at Cheel arena. Clarkson is one of a handful of teams that has played six games so far this season and this weekend serves a multitude of purposes. First, it allows an open week for players that are injured to rest and recuperate. Second, it provides the coaching staff to re-evaluate some of the new, and old, players and set up line combinations and defensive pairings they might not try during a regular season game. Finally, it gives the potential recruits on the U-18 team a chance to see a visiting and potential future home arena.

Expect Clarkson to start freshman goalie Matt Smith and for some of the non-regulars to see some ice time. Granted no team wants to lose a hockey game, but to risk injury in an exhibition game is foolish. Senior defensman Mike Grenzy will probably not start or even be in the line up tonight. Clarkson will look to continue to improve their special teams as well. Last weekend brought the whole spectrum from bad penalty kill to great play on the man advantage. These exhibition games should allow coach Roll to fine tune the special teams for the ECAC opener next weekend.

Prediction: Clarkson 5 - USA 3
Last night Clarkson defeated Quinnipiac 6-3 in Connecticut. The Bobcats struck first but the Knights rattled off six straight goals to take command. Genevieve Lavoie tallied first and Christine Bailkowski had a natural hat trick to put the Knights up 4-1 in the second. Ashley Shaidle and Lauren Lubrano tallied to put the Knight up by five. Quinnipiac scored twice in the third to cut the lead, but the Knights held on for the win. Kira Hurley got the win and Jessica Finley saw action in net in the third period. Clarkson is now 3-3-1 and faces Princeton this afternoon.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Weekend Picks

Since Clarkson is facing the Wonder Boys tomorrow, the preview will be postponed til tomorrow afternoon or so.

Here's how I did last week:
RPI @ Denver - Denver 3-2; WRONG RPI 2-1
LSSU @ Clarkson - Clarkson 5-1; WRONG LSSU 5-1

RPI @ Denver - Denver 5-1; RIGHT Denver 5-1
Union @ Northeastern - Union 2-1; WRONG Northeastern 5-0
LSSU @ Clarkson - Clarkson 4-2; RIGHT Clarkson 7-2
Canisus @ Colgate - Colgate 5-3; RIGHT Colgate 9-0
RMU @ Cornell - Cornell 4-3; RIGHT Cornell 4-1


According to Ron, ties do not count as losses in picks. So my picks last week went from 5-3 to 5-0-3. So I'm now 9-3-3 for the two weeks I've been picking all games.

Here are my picks for this week.

Harvard @ Dartmouth - Harvard has Dartmotuh's number, this will continue in Hanover.
  • Harvard 5 - Dartmouth 2

SLU @ Michigan State - SLU will not be able to overcome their youth, for now.
  • MSU 4 - SLU 1

Holy Cross @ Yale - Welcome to the NCAA Keith Alain.
  • Yale 3 - HC 3

Bentley @ Princeton - Obligatory Marc Zwicky comment.
  • Princeton 5 - Bentley 1

Brown @ Merrimack - This game is awful on paper.
  • Merrimack 4 - Brown 1
Bentley @ Princeton - Tigers sweep.
  • Princeton 4 - Bentley 0

RIT @ Cornell - This game really hinges on RIT's goalie. Cornell still wins.
  • Cornell 2 - RIT 1

Yale @ New Hampshire - UNH is not Holy Cross. Welcome to the road Keith Alain.
  • UNH 7 - Yale 1

SLU @ Wayne State - Saints take one on the road.
  • SLU 6 - WSU 0

Governor's Cup
Colgate vs. Quinnipiac - Probably the better of the two games.
  • Colgate 4 - Quinnipiac 3

Union vs. RPI - Will they fill the Pepsi Center?
  • RPI 3 - Union 1

Vermont @ Dartmouth - Vermont is really a tale of two teams right now.
  • Dartmouth 5 - UVM 2

Governor's Cup
Consolation - Union vs. Quinnipiac - Bobcats for thrid.
  • Q 5 - U 1

Championship - Colgate makes a statement.
  • Colgate 6 - RPI 1

USCHO Game of the Week

Just a reminder, the Women's Matchup against Princeton on Saturday is also Clarkson's first appearance in the USCHO Game of the Week. The broadcast will be available here. Puck drops at 4:00.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Women's Preview

Good news for Clarkson fans. The toughest part of the schedule looks like it's over. Sure it's odd to say that after just six games, but it's true. The Golden Knight women head out to New Jersey and Connecticut to face Princeton and the Q in a couple of crucial conference games this weekend.

Clarkson's schedule had them facing some of the toughest competition in the country the past two weeks. A set against #4 Mercyhurst where they came away with a tie two weeks ago, and then a sweep at the hands of arch-rival #3 St. Lawrence last weekend, despite a highly competitive effort, in particular at Appleton Friday Night where they fell 3-1.

Now just because I say the toughest part of the schedule is over, doesn't mean that the competition is pitiful and weak, but there are a LOT of L's on the column in the ECACHL with the exception of the undefeated Saints at 6-0-0.

Princeton, they've got Clarkson's number over the past year, and they're as solid as any other ECACHL team. But they haven't skated competitively more than a couple times this season, and a Clarkson team that is learning to work together has a real shot to finally take one from the Tigers. Newly anointed arch-rival Harvard awaits next week as the Knights look to exact a little revenge for last year's crushing playoff defeat, and their traveling partner Dartmouth is always a strong team in the conference (although they were swept by Mercyhurst last week.)

Clarkson will face the Tigers who are 1-0-1 after their opening weekend where they took out Quinnipiac 6-3, and tied Boston College 2-2. Five of Princeton's six top scorers return this year lead by Senior forward Kim Pearce who had 11 goals and 30 assists last season. Sophomore Annie Greenwood appeared to be the recipient of a lot of those helpers tallying 25 goals and 9 assists. Sophomore Kristen Young has the huge task of filling the skates of Roxanne Gaudiel. She has all of the time in net for the Tigers with a 2.40 GAA and a .918 Save Pct in the first games of the season.

On Saturday, they'll head over to face the Q who are coming off of a 6-3 loss to Princeton and a 5-2 win over Northeastern. Quinnipiac has also chosen the route of the ridiculously tough opening schedule, opening up the season facing defending national champ Wisconsin (twice), Boston College, and Princeton in a five game span. Quinnipiac is still dealing with the growing pains of jumping into the ECAC, but have a promising group of sophomores currently lead in scoring by Hayley McMeekin who should form a strong nucleus for the future. Senior Vicky Graham who lead the Bobcats with 24 points last season has yet to tally a point. Senior Laura Brennan has seen the bulk of the time in goal for the Bobcats. She has a 4.41 GAA and a .865 Save pct. Against some of the best in the nation.

Last weekend Clarkson defenseman Katie Morrison was the only player who was able to put one into the back of the net against SLU. Britney Selina continues to be a regular on the scoring sheet adding an assist along with Brooke Beazer. Selina now leads the team in scoring with three goals and five assists. All but one Golden Knight skater has a point this year after six games. Kira Hurley had a tough weekend giving up eight goals on 59 shots to St. Lawrence. Clarkson needs Hurley more than ever against Princeton this weekend to help the rest of the squad regain their confidence.

Despite the score sheet last weekend, the Knights appeared to play a much more disciplined game. They gave up only one power-play goal to the Saints on the weekend, and managed to significantly cut down time on the PK. While they were held to 14 shots on Friday, they outshot St. Lawrence on Saturday. Clarkson will need to remain disciplined, and take advantage of a team that has not competed together much this season, by either piling the shots on net, or generating premium scoring chances whichever way they can break the goalies first. Their game should overpower Quinnipiac unless the Bobcat D can really buckle down. Those heading to Princeton should be in for a great back and forth game.

Clarkson 6, Quinnipiac 2
Clarkson 2, Princeton 1

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Hockey Scores on Your Cell? Yes Please!

Our colleagues over at College Hockey News where we maintain our other, more worldly blog have a smashing new invention that will revolutionize the way you spend your time out on the weekends: Up-to-date college hockey scores on your cell phone. BRILLIANT!

At first I thought it was due to my prompting which came about after an incident at a wedding two weeks ago when Brett and I called and text messaged someone who we will call "Steve" roughly 45 times in the span of a 20 minute period to see if Clarkson had pulled it out against UMass-Amherst. In reality, Adam and Mike over at CHN were already all over it, and after I sent my suggestion, they sent me the link: scores.collegehockeynews.com.

Just punch this baby into your cell phone, bookmark it, and bingo you're ready for this weekend. Updated scores. At the bar. Sitting in the car trying to get out of Cheel Parking Lot. Even in Canton.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Clarkson in the Pros

A quick recap of how Clarkson Alumni are doing in the NHL:

  • Craig Conroy, C, Los Angeles Kings - 0-1-1 in 9 games. -4 rating
  • Willie Mitchell, D, Vancouver Canucks - 0-1-1 in 9 games. +3 rating
  • Chris Clark, RW, Washington Capitals - 2-6-8 in 7 games. +3 rating.
  • Todd Marchant, C, Anaheim Ducks - 1-2-3 in 8 games. +2 rating.
  • Todd White, C, Minnesota Wild - 2-0-2 in 8 games. +3 rating. GWG on opening night.
  • Randy Jones, D, Philadelphia Flyers - 0-1-1 in 8 games, -1 rating.
  • Erik Cole, LW, Carolina Hurricanes - 1-4-5 in 9 games, +2 rating.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Men Rebound Against LSSU ; Women Fall to SLU

In the afternoon game the Clarkson women hung with the third ranked SLU Saints for a period but fell to SLU 5-0 in front of 823 fans at Cheel Arena. Kira Hurley made 26 saves.

In the evening game the Clarkson men destroyed Lake Superior State 7-1. Clarkson scored the first 5 goals of the contest starting with freshman Matt Beca's second career goal. Steve Zalewski, and David Cayer also added first period goals. In the second period Shawn Well and Zalewski scored powerplay goals. In the third, LSSU got on the board spoiling the shutout bid by senior Kyle McNulty, who got his first start of the season. The Golden Knights answered back with goals from Chris D'Alvise and Shawn Weller. Clarkson finished the night 4 out of 14 on the powerplay and killed 8 of 9 Lake State powerplays. Kyle McNulty finished up with 22 saves.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Lake State Overpowers Clarkson 5-1; SLU Knock Off Women 3-1


Clarkson heads back to the drawing board and takes on the Lakers tomorrow night.
Over in Canton, St. Lawrence jumped out to a two goal lead. Katie Morrison scored her fourth goal of the season in the second period but SLU tacked on the third goal late in the second. Kira Hurley made 33 saves. Clarkson faces SLU at home tomorrow afternoon.

Men's Preview: LSSU @ Clarkson

Clarkson is off to their best start in nearly two decades, and this weekend they take on a team they have not faced in a decade, as they welcome Lake Superior State University to Cheel Arena for a weekend series. Lake State enters the series with a 1-1-0 record after a split last weekend against CCHA rival Ohio State. The Lakers were shut out 1-0 on Friday night and won 7-6 in overtime on Saturday. Lake Sate is lead by former Clarkson assistant Jim Roque who is in his second year at the helm, replacing Frank Anzalone.

Roque and his team face a tough challenge coming into Cheel. Clarkson has not lost in their home building since November 26, 2005. Since then Clarkson has compiled a 9-0-1 record at home and are 16-2-2 at Cheel dating back to the start of last season. LSSU was 5-8-3 on the road last year and was outs scored 44-36 outside of Sault Ste. Marie. Lake State's defense is young, consisting of one senior, one junior, two sophomores and two freshmen, look for the Clarkson forwards to try and exploit this early on Friday night with a quick couple goals.

Early on in the season with the new USA Hockey rules interpretations, there are going to be plenty of penalties called. It's a part of the game now, and until the players or referee's change it's here to stay. Last weekend LSSU took went 8 for 11 on the penalty kill and 2 for 14 on the powerplay. Not great numbers, but this will be a team with another week of practice under their belts and in a tight game a late penalty can prove costly. Clarkson has taken 20.5 PIM's per game so far, and has killed off 30 of 34 powerplays. They are scoring on the power play at a 25 percent clip. If LSSU gets into penalty trouble, and let's be honest, with an ECAC crew, it's hard not to, Clarkson should make the Lakers pay.

The goaltending matchup is very intriguing. Laker senior Jeff Jakaitis put up 43 saves against Ohio State and still lost. Freshman Pat Inglis got the start Saturday, allowed 6 goals, and won. Jakaitis is the starter but Roque may go with Inglis Saturday. Jakaitis can steal a game, and with 43 saves last week, is a very sound goaltender, but if Clarkson outshoots LSSU by the 79-56 margin as OSU did, both goal tenders could be in for a long night. On Clarkson's end David Leggio has posted solid numbers. A 3-0-1 record with a .929 save percentage and a 2.20 GAA. Leggio has not stolen a game for the Knights yet, but has been good enough to win. Coach Roll will probably go with Leggio both nights.

At 5 goals per game Clarkson has the 5th ranked offense in the country, but what might be surprising is the fact that everyone is getting into the act. 12 different Knights have goals, 5 have more than one and Shawn Weller, and Shea Guthrie have a combined one goal. Clarkson has outscored it's opponents 20-9 and in the three wins the game winning goals have come from Steve Zalewski, Chris D'Alvise and Dan Tuttle. This is a potent offense that when it hits it's stride can put goals on the board in a hurry. Clarkson will look to get on the board early this weekend, get the crowd rocking and take both games from the Lakers.

Before I make my predictions let's see how I fared last week:
Clarkson 5 - Providence 4 -RIGHT CU 5-1
Clarkson 6 - UMass 2 - WRONG Tie 3-3
Q 8 - RMU 3 - RIGHT Q 3 - RMU 1
BU 3 - RPI 2 - WRONG Tie 4-4
Union 5 - RIT 3 - WRONG Tie 2-2
Providence 4 - SLU 1 - RIGHT PU 4 - SLU 2
Q 6 - RMU 2 - RIGHT Q 5 - RMU 1
Colgate 4 - Bentley 0 - RIGHT Colgate 5 - Bentley 1

5-3, Not horrible, not great.

This week we have:
RPI @ Denver - DU says hello to their former assistant, and sweeps him back to Troy. 3-2; 5-1
Union @ Northeastern - Union in a squeaker. 2-1
Canisus @ Colgate - What's up with the midweek games for Gate? They still win 5-2.
RMU @ Cornell - Cornell wins, but it's not a blowout. Cornell 4-3
LSSU @ Clarkson - Too much offense and home cooking carry the Knights to 5-0-1. 5-1; 4-2

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Clarkson v. #4 SLU - The Women Need YOU!

While those over at Western College Hockey are haggling about UAA/UAF being the best rivalry in college hockey, us fans from the North Country know where the real deal is at. Last year a combined 4,000 fans came out to Appleton and Cheel to watch a third year program battle the #1 ranked team in the country, and actually take a split in two exciting, competitive games.... By the way rivalry scoreboard watchers, this was the home and home series for the Golden Knight and Saints' Women's squads. These are two hockey fans bases that will get up for any game, and they've been rewarded with elite squads who will go at it again this weekend in Canton and Potsdam.

Clarkson is no longer the new kid on the block. Sure, last year Coach Seeley had expectations, and the team had expectations, but lets face it, the majority of the fans coming out to see the Green and Gold didn't know what to expect. Things have changed. Everyone has expectations now, and these are two huge games which could potentially decide the ECAC, and they're the opening games of this year's conference slate.

Both teams opened up their season playing essentially "tune-up" matches. Clarkson smoking Vermont, and St. Lawrence sweeping Wayne State. The following week, both headed into murkier waters with The Knights heading off to face #3 ranked Mercyhurst and snagging a point in the process. St. Lawrence played two very closely played contests against Providence and UConn, and came away victorious in both.

Now here we are.

After maklng it to the Frozen Four last year, St. Lawrence comes in with a spotless 4-0-0 record. So far their best competition has been Providence who they narrowly defeated last weekend 2-1. That game was all about special teams, as SLU converted both their goals on the PP and killed off nine penalties in the win. As you might expect, the usual suspects, forwards Sabrina Harbec and Carson Duggan (who is scary enough as a Sophomore, and should be downright nasty as a Senior) are already on the top of the scoring sheet. Senior Co-Captain Chelsea Grills is back from a medical red-shirt last year and already has two goals and two assists. Defenseman Annie Guay won USCHO Defensive Player of the Week honors after her goal and two assists last weekend. After the departure of Jessica Moffat, we'll see less of a platoon this year for Meghan Guckian who stopped 55 of 56 shots over the weekend on her way to ECACHL Goaltender of the Week Honors.

Clarkson came into Mercyhurst hoping to knock off the #3 team in the country, and came up just a bit short, but left with some momentum coming back in the 3rd period to take a tie from the Lakers. The Lakers put 83 shots on net, and scored all three of their goals on Saturday on the PP. Kira Hurley stood tall in net, particularly on Saturday when she did not allow an even strength goal and stopped 39 of 42 shots. She'll look for help from the team in terms of not taking penalties, and preventing significantly less shot opportunities. Katie Morrison has proven to be a genuine threat from the blue-line scoring three goals and an assist against Mercyhurst. Jessica Cloutier and ECACHL Rookie of the Week, Britney Selina both had three helpers a piece over the weekend as well. Marie-Jo Gaudet did not play last weekend, which no doubt put the Knights at a disadvantage, hopefully we'll see her on the ice this weekend.

This almost sounds like the same thing I wrote for the Mercyhurst game. Clarkson NEEDS to stay out of the box. I'm not sure if it's the new fast-paced offense that forces them to take penalties on the way back, or if the refs are just calling a different game, but giving a team like St. Lawrence ten power-play chances will come back to haunt you unless Hurley is standing on her head. She'll provide you with the chance to win any game, but those chances diminish when twenty minutes of the game are 5 on 4. For the first time, probably ever, the offense is not a concern to me. The Knights are making it happen on the opposing end of the ice. Now they've just got to stop the other team. St. Lawrence will need to stick to their plan, put a lot of shots on net, and be sure not hang Guckian out to dry. Clarkson's offense converts now. Sure, they only put 19 shots on goal on Saturday, but three of them went in the net, and that's what counts.

The crowds will certainly play a factor here. Both goalies are stellar, but we saw Clarkson get to Meghan Guckian at Cheel last year in a 2-0 victory, and having 2,000 people behind you yelling makes that happen. The Knights NEED you to come out to Appleton and Cheel this weekend to support the team. Clarkson fans you've got no excuse on Saturday not to spend an entire day at the rink. The puck frops at 3:00 for the Women's Game. That means a couple of hours in between to hit up Club 99, or the Barben Rooms, maybe even a jaunt over to Eben's, then show back up for the Men's game against LSSU. A perfect hockey weekend.

CHF Predictions:

Clarkson 1 at St. Lawrence 3
St. Lawrence 2 at Clarkson 3

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Why We Like George Roll

Taken from Clarkson Athletics:

"Last year if you were to say we were going to go on the road and get three of four points we would have certainly taken it," stated George Roll. "This year we don’t have that same feeling. We want to take all four points. We played a very solid game on Friday night and I think we took a good Providence team by surprise. The following night at UMass, we certainly did not bring our "A" game. They always play us tough, but we found a way to gain the tie. As a team we were disappointed with our effort on Saturday, never mind the result. We did not play within our systems and we did not play to our expectations. If we are going to be a championship team, we can’t let those opportunities slip away. I am certainly proud, however, that we came back and found a way to tie the game up late."

Monday, October 16, 2006

Recruit Update

Scott Freeman is on an absolute tear for Bowmanvile. The Eagles are 13-1-0-1 and lead the OPJHL East division by 5 points. Freeman has played in all 15 games and has 7 goals and an astounding 34 assists to lead the league in scoring, by nine points. If he keeps up his 2.73 points per game average he will finish the season with 137 points.

Brandon D'Fazio has played 12 games with Oakville and has 3 goals and 10 assists.

Brian Rufenach has been sidelined with a separated shoulder and has only played 2 games for Lindsay.

Corey Tamblyn has 8 points in 9 games for Markham.

Louke Oakley has 7 goals and 22 assists for Bowmanvile. He and Tamblyn are 2008 recruits, but it's hard not to say that the combination of Oakley and Freeman already looks promising.

Julien Cayer has played 10 games for St. Jerome and has a goal and ten assists.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Clarkson Men Remain Undefeated; Women Salvage Tie

Clarkson defeated Providence 6-1 Friday night in Providence to bump their record to 3 and 0. Clarkson jumped out to a 4-0 lead and never looked back by scoring two empty net goals late in the third. Chris D'Alvise had the game winner and added shorthanded goal. Matt Curley scored his first goal since his freshman season to open the scoring. Steve Zalewski scored twice and David Cayer scored his third goal of the season. David Leggio made 34 saves in a strong winning effort.

Saturday night Clarkson came back from two, one goal deficits to tie the UMass Minutemen 3-3. David Cayer, Nick Dodge and Tim Marks scored goals for the Knights, for Marks it was his first collegiate goal and it was the game tying goal. David Leggio made 31 saves.

In Erie, Pennsylvania, the women's team lost 5-2 to Mercyhurst Friday night. Britney Selina and Katie Morrison scored the Knights goals, Kira Hurley made 36 saves in the loss.

Saturday the women tied the Lakers 3-3 Katie Morrison scored twice and Ashley Shaidle had the game tying goal in the third period. Kira Hurley posted 39 saves.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Clarkson Men Look to Exorcise Road Demons Against Friars, Minutemen

Last weekend Clarkson put up eleven goals, at home. Cheel Arena has been kind to the Golden Knights over the past year. The last lost in Potsdam was November 26, 2005. Since that date Clarkson has gone 9-0-1 including the sweep to open the season last weekend. While the home cooking has been good, the road has been less kind to the Knights. If George Roll (inset right) wants to take this squad to the next level, the Knights must come out of this weekend with at least one win.

The Golden Knights come into Providence, Rhode Island this weekend to take on the Providence Friars in their season opener. The Friars are tabbed to finish somewhere between 5th and 6th in the highly talented Hockey East, depending who you ask. Second year head coach Tim Army brings in a squad that is in a situation very similar to Clarkson. Both teams are built around a high paced offense that will look to get out to early leads and keep up the pressure. Both teams have relatively young defenses that can be prone to mistakes and both teams feature junior goaltenders who are looking to prove themselves this year.

This should lead to a high competitive game, much like the game last year in Cheel which was a 2-2 tie until midway through the 2nd period. Unlike last years game Providence goaltender will be expected to be much sharper than last year. Providence outshot Clarkson 43-25 but David Leggio put up a career high (at the time) 41 saves to give Clarkson the win. While the shot total might not be that high this time around, I would expect a high paced offensive game from both teams. The team that scores five goals first will win. I think Roll has his team prepped and they have heard about how bad they are on the road for a year now. This is the time to prove they can win, on the road, and a close game.

Clarkson 5 - Providence 4

Saturday Clarkson takes on a UMass squad that no one really knows what to think of. Picked to finish somewhere around 8th the Minutemen are an inconsistent squad with a goaltender who has plenty of talent, but no defense in front of him. UMass opens their season Friday against Sacred Heart and beat New Brunswick 402 last weekend despite being outshot 41-23. Jonathan Quick made 31 stops on 33 shots, but allowing 40+ shots per game to an offense that can score like Clarkson is not a healthy game plan.

Offensively UMass will need to pick up the pace set last year. The Minutemen put up 2.14 goals per game and were held under 3 goals in 24 games. Clarkson will need to exploit this and get off to a quick lead. If Clarkson can put up more than 30 shots this game, they should be in the drivers seat. UMass needs Quick to have an outstanding game and hope his defense can stop Clarkson from posting their average of 37 shots per game. I don't see this happening for the Minutemen. The Golden Knights get the sweep and get off the their first 4-0 start since the light bulb was invented.

Clarkson 6 - UMass 2

Looking around the ECAC
Friday, October 13
Robert Morris at Quinnipiac - The Q will show us what their offense can do. Q 8 - RMU 3

Saturday, October 14
BU at RPI - RPI will come out strong, but BU will shake the rust off late. BU 3 - RPI 2
RIT at Union - Union always starts strong. Union 5 - RIT 3
SLU at Providence - Friars won't be swept at home. Providence 4 - SLU 1
Robert Morris at Quinnipiac - Q sweeps. Q 6 - RMU 2

Sunday October 15
Bentley at Colgate - Colgate finally gets all the rust off. Colgate 4 - Bentley 0

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Women's Preview

After demolishing Vermont and handily defeating Aurora in an exhibition last Saturday at Cheel arena, the Clarkson women's team is showing that they're not the offensively challenged team of the past, scoring 16 goals in those three games. This weekend the Golden Knights head to Erie, Pennsylvania, face 3rd ranked Mercyhurst for a pair of games that will set the tone for the rest of the season. Taking a game in PA will likely vault the Knights into the national rankings, getting swept will have hockey snobs saying that Clarkson is not for real. This game also has some real post-season ramifications in terms of Pairwise as well. Alot of pressure for the second official series of the season.

Mercyhurst is coming off of a 5-2, 8-1 sweep of a Maine team that is looking to solidify its place in the top tier of Hockey East. The Lakers had 13 players get on the scoresheet over the weekend. The Lakers return all four of their top scorers from last year, led by sophomore Valerie Chouinard who had four goals and three assists against the Black Bears. Junior goalie Laura Hosler should see all of the time in net this weekend. She allowed three goals on 29 shots against Maine. Hosler is a quality netminder who won't be beaten as easily as the previous goalies that Clarkson has faced. She carried a .908 save percentage last season, and a 1.82 GAA.

Clarkson shut-out AA PWHL team Aurora on Saturday 5-0. Rick Seeley rested Kira Hurley, and Jessica Finley got the call knocking down all FOUR Panther shots. Clarkson will continue to look towards Marie-Jo Gaudet and Lindsay Williams to spark the Knights offense, and look for contributions from the rookies, Eusepi, Lavoie, Moorehead and Selina. A big question mark will be whether Melissa Marshall can continue her offensive pace. If so, the Knights will be in a really good place this season. Expect Kira Hurley back in goal after getting the weekend off.

The Laker offense put 88 shots on goal against Maine, which means if Clarkson's newly found offensive pace doesn't click early, Hurley and the Knights D will need to hold down the fort. Hurley has only seen 19 shots so far this season, so an early barrage will either crush the Knights or provide a massive confidence boost for the Knights. Clarkson needs to push the offensive opportunities so that we can ignore the scenario I just described. The Knights need to stay out ofthe box. Traditionally, they've been a team that only takes one or two penalties a game, but as we saw in the Vermont series, that might be changing. Mercyhurst scored 13 special teams goals against Maine, 11 on the power-play. Extended time in the box means extended trouble.

Clarkson 3, Mercyhurst 2
Mercyhurst 4, Clarkson 2

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Clarkson To Test Video Replay

According to this article in the Clarkson Integrator, Clarkson has been chosen to test out a video replay system for the ECAC. WCKN, Clarkson's television station, will be in charge of the video replay, and the majority of the technical work will be handled by students. It was these students availability and dedication that the ECAC chose Clarkson to run this pilot program.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Zalewski Named ECAC Player of the Week

Clarkson foward Steve Zalewski was named the ECAC Player of the week for the first week of the regular season. Zalewski had a goal a two assists this weekend and his goal was the game winner against RIT.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

2000th Game. Just another win!

Clarkson defeated RIT in the Golden Knight's 2000th all time game 4-2 Saturday Night at Cheel Arena. Steve Zalewski had the game winner, and David Cayer had two goals including an empty netter from his own net to seal the deal. Grant Clitsome also had a goal, and David Leggio stopped 26 in the victory.

Friday, October 06, 2006




Clarkson Video Webcast

Just a reminder that Clarkson will be streaming video of this weekend's games over the web at Clarkson Athletics. The webcast will be produced by the student television station WCKN. In addition, if you're on dial-up, the solid Cool 95.3 Broadcast featuring Bob Ahfeld and Josh Bartell is available here!

Weekend Preview

Since we've been putting up alot of previews here is a new take on this weekends games. We had a chance to chat with RIT blogger Mark Komar and get his thoughts on Clarkson, RIT and this weekends matchup.

Clarkson Hockey Fans (CHF): Tell us about yourself and give a plug to your website and blog

Mark Komar (MK): I have been an RIT Corner Crew member for over 10 years following the hockey team. I started my website http://www.ritcornercrew.org/ a few years ago to put everything that we do in one place. This year I added the blog - ritcornercrew.blogspot.com, I will be adding my thoughts on the games there.

CHF: Can you explain the Corner Crew?

MK: The best way to describe the Corner Crew is that it is the primary student section of RIT - with some alumni mixed in. We do a lot of cheers during the games. And we really like to get on opposing goalies. I think we add a lot to the hockey experience, and I know the team and coach appreciate the energy we bring:

CHF: What was the highlight of the first season in D-1?

MK: Well, the St. Lawrence win was huge just because it was the best name opponent to come to Rochester and then to pull off the upset was amazing. I think the Cornell game was a close second because the Tigers were able to hang in with them at Lynah - not an easy task. After that, really just that RIT was in so many games was a big highlight and a good omen of things to come.

CHF: Turning to this weekend, how do the Tigers match up against the Saints and Knights?

MK: Clearly RIT will be underdogs this weekend. I think RIT will be able to make a game of it against St. Lawrence because the Saints lost a lot of offense to graduation. That is RIT's best chance of getting a point out of the weekend. As for Clarkson, with all the offense the Knights return, the goalie, probably Guimond, may need to put up an amazing performance to win. Looking at Clarkson's numbers, it's easy to see why they could be looking at the ECACHL title.

CHF: Is Guimond the #1 starter this year?

MK: He is the primary starter. Coach Wilson will be looking to get Louis Menard in some games early this year to see what he can do. He looked good in preseason last year, but lost time due to first some paperwork in getting his eligibility and then injuries.

CHF: You mentioned RIT hung around in many games last year. Do you think that they ran out of gas late or just teams made adjustments in the third period? Follow that up with: Do you think a year of experience will help them keep their legs?

MK: I think a little of everything. Many of last year's players were recruited for DIII hockey. So really, they had to work hard against the DI players. I think that the size and speed of the teams wore down RIT quite a bit. The other thing is that I do think some teams were just thinking RIT would be a nice exhibition, and then all of the sudden RIT is taking it to them and the team winds up playing harder in the 3rd to hold on to the win.

CHF: Who is the go to guy on offense for the Tigers?

MK: Simon Lambert is the player to watch on offense. He had 16 goals last year and that was far and away the best on the team. I think the player to watch this year on offense that I think could do some big things is Steve Pinizzotto. He started the season late due to injury and I don't know if he was fully healthy all season and still put up 13 points in his 20 games.

CHF: Any new recruits going to see alot of ice time?

MK: I think Matt Crowell and Anton Kharin are probably going to see the most on offense. RIT also signed some bigger defensemen, which is much needed. So I think you will see a lot of Steve Coon, Al Mazur, and Dan Ringwald.

CHF: Final score prediction?

MK: Clarkson wins 5-2. I think Clarkson will try to get ahead early and cruise to a win.

CHF: Let's hear you questions about Clarkson.

MK: How do you think Clarkson will handle the pressure of being the preseason #2 in the ECACHL?

CHF: I think that they know coming into this year that they have the talent to be a top team in the league, and have just underperformed in the past. I don't think rankings are really on their minds right now, as cliched as that sounds. I think they will live up to expectations and will finish in the top four of the league. I picked them to finish first, but I'm a homer.

MK: Is defense a concern for the Knights? The numbers seem rather ordinary.

CHF: I think it is to tell the truth. Chris Brekelmans was a rock back there and losing him leaves a big question mark on the blue line. They have some big kids playing but its a learning curve. Paquet and Mason are very skilled but need to prove it this year. Grenzy is probably the top guy now and the rest of the defense will be looking up to him. Clitsome QB's the powerplay at times and has some offensive skill, he would probably be number two. I think they need to gel quickly or these OOC games could be adventurous 6-5 affairs.

MK: What about goaltending? It looks like Leggio and McNulty split time - is that the case this year as well?

CHF: Leggio won the job, in my mind, at Lynah last year in March. He made 104 saves on 111 shots in that environment, that's gotta be worth something. I'm not sure what Roll will do early on. I wouldn't be surprised if he goes with Leggio or if he splits time between McNulty, Leggio and freshman Matt Smith. I think it will boil down to who's got the hot hand. Having two goaltenders that a coach can feel comfortable starting is a luxury, so I guess it remains to be seen. If I had to make a prediction, I'd say Leggio starts both games.

MK: What about the offense? That seems to be the strength of the team. Anyone who is not so obvious that we should watch for?

CHF: Max Kolu. Probably the fastest skater on the team and has one of the hardest shots too, he's a solid player on the fourth line and is always a threat if teams don't watch for him. I think Beca and Marks are going to be standout freshman in the league too.

MK: Can you explain the huge difference between the home and road records last year?

CHF: Nope. I think the youth of the team was a big reason. I know these guys all travel in juniors and what not, but there's a big difference in a road trip to Kitchner and a road trip to Lynah, Starr. Even to Princeton, that's 7 hours on a bus, just sitting. I think this year they know they have to perform on the road, and it will be a big point of emphasis with Roll and his staff.

MK: Last question - prediction on the game?

CHF: Well, I think the team will be looking to make a statement this weekend. Saturday night is the programs 2000th game, and its at home. I think your prediction of Clarkson coming out fast will hold true. I think Clarkson takes it 4-1. Plus RIT hasn't had the experience of playing SLU on Friday and Clarkson on Saturday. It can take alot out of even the best teams.


Here's our predictions for the weekend:
Clarkson 5 - Niagara 3
Clarkson 4 - RIT 1

ECAC Season Preview - Clarkson

Clarkson Golden Knights

Last Years Finish - 8th

Key Returnees - Nick Dodge Jr. F, David Cayer Jr. F, Shawn Weller Jr. F, Shea Guthrie So. F, Mike Sullivan Sr. F

Key Losses - Jeff Genovy F, Chris Brekelmans D

That's right, I picked Clarkson to finish first. I picked Clarkson to jump seven spots and capture their first regular season title since 2001. It may seem illogical to the outsider, but Clarkson has the talent and now they have the experience to take the league. With 21 returning letterman, nine of which are drafted into the NHL, head coach George Roll is charged with the task of tapping into this talent and producing a team that can win at home and on the road.

Up front the Clarkson offense is lead by junior captain Nick Dodge. Dodge lead all Clarkson skaters last year with 41 points and was named to the pre-season all ECAC team. Clarkson will need Dodge to put up similar numbers again this year and to lead an offense that was ranked 6th in conference scoring. Senior Mike Sullivan is poised to have a break out year and will be counted on to continue his increased production. Sophomore Shea Guthrie will also be expected to make an impact for the Knights. Fortunately for Clarkson they feature a very balanced attack with eight returning Knights registering 20 points or more last year. Opposing defenses can not focus on one guy or one line as there is potential for goals in all four lines this year.

On defense the departure of Chris Brekelmans leaves some question marks for the Knights. Michael Grenzy will be counted on to step and lead the blueliners but they are still a young group and will need to come together quickly to get the Knights off to a fast start. Grant Clitsome will step up into the number two role and will be expected to contribute on the powerplay. Sophomores Phil Paquet and Tyrell Mason will need to make an impact this year for the Knights to improve on their 9th ranked defense.

In net Clarkson will look to find a number one goaltender. As of last year David Leggio was the #1 starter for the last ten games. Leggio stepped up his play in two gut wrenching performances at Lynah rink. It is on the back of this performance that Leggio enters the season as the expected starter. However do not be surprised Roll to give senior Kyle McNulty or freshman Matt Smith a start early on to give Leggio a rest or to find who has the hot hand.

The big knock on Clarkson is not living up to expectations. This year the expectations are about as high as one can imagine. Clarkson needs to live up to their full potential. Coach Roll will have his team ready to go and will guide the Knights to a first place finish in the league.

Best Case Finish - 1st
Worst Case Finish - 5th

CHF's Pick - 1st

Thursday, October 05, 2006

ECAC Season Preview - Colgate

Colgate Raiders

Last Years Finish - 2nd - Lost tie breaker to Dartmouth

Key Returnees - Tyler Burton Jr. F, Marc Fulton Sr. F, Mark Dekanich Jr. G

Key Losses - Kyle Wilson F, Jon Smyth F, Ryan Smyth F

Colgate has had a strong run in the ECAC over the past three years, and with the current line-up head coach Don Vaughn has taking the ice this season there is no reason to believe that this team wont compete for the league and tournament title. Colgate loses a big scorer in Wilson but has plenty of proven talent in Burton to replace the lost points. However Colgate's greatest strength lies between the pipes in Dryden Award winner Mark Dekanich. The success of the season will ride on Dekanich's shoulders.

Dekanich started 36 games last year, including 21 of 22 league games, and stymied opponents to a tune of 2.29 GAA and a .924 save percentage. In league play his numbers only got better. An 13-5-1 record with a 1.98 GAA and a .934 save percentage. All of this came as a surprise to the league as Dekanich had only seen action in two games previous to last season. Colgate expects more of the same from their junior netminder, but needs to be cautious of overplaying Dekanich and be sure to use junior Justin Kowalkoski and freshman Charles Long to give Dekanich a break when he needs one.

Dekanich is the back bone of a defense that really has no superstars as of yet. Mike Campner and Nick St. Pierre have the potential to be defensive stars but offensively Vaughn's system does not lend itself to having a blueliner chip in on the scoring. This did not seem to effect Colgate last year and having stay at home defenders will not hurt the Raiders this season. Colgate will count on the senior Campner the junior St. Pierre to lead the defense which was tops in the league last year. However if Dekanich struggles the defense may have trouble bailing him out.

Lead by senior Wilson and Burton, two 40 point scorers, Colgate ranked fourth in league scoring. Burton is the go to guy and has a strong cast of forwards in Fulton and Winchester. However after that the scoring tails off and Colgate will look to new blood to fill in when the big line can't produce. However, once again, Colgate's offense will feed off Dekanich and the defense. Colgate is looking to beat teams 2-0 and 3-2. In February and March the Raiders cooled off and went 5-7-2. In the 5 wins Colgate scored 17 goals, in the losses and ties the Raiders scored 8 goals. When the offense is not clicking, the defense needs to keep teams under two goals to keep the Raiders in games.

Despite the offensive problems the Colgate Raiders are a strong team and will fight for a first round bye, a league title and a NCAA tournament birth.

Best Case Finish - 1st
Worst Case Finish - 4th

CHF's Pick - 2nd

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

ECAC Season Preview - Harvard

Harvard Crimson

Last Years Finish - 4th

Key Returnees - Kevin Du Sr. F, Jon Pelle Jr. F, Dylan Reese Sr. D

Key Losses - John Daigneau G, Dan Murphy F, Charlie Johnson F

Harvard returns one of the most balanced scoring offenses in the league and 7 of their top 10 scoring leaders. Combine this with a team that returns 17 of it's regular skaters from a team that won the league tournament and Harvard is prime position to compete for a first round bye. Head coach Ted Donato is entering his third season at the helm and has been to the championship game twice. As he continues to build the team to his liking Harvard will continue to hold on to a top spot in the league.

The biggest knock on Harvard is their league play. Over the past five years Harvard has been to the ECAC championship game five times. In those five years they have been as high as the two seed and as low as the sixth seed. The Crimson have a knack for winning in the ECAC post season despite their finish in the regular season. This inconsistency is hard to explain but Harvard has always had the talent to finish in the top four of the league every year, this year is no different. Up front the Crimson are lead by seniors Kevin Du and Ryan Maki, and juniors John Pelle and Paul Dufault. All of which tallied at least 20 points last year. Du, the leading scorer, will look to become one of the top tier forwards in the league. Last year Du was the lone Harvard forward selected to an All-ECAC team. Expect sophomore Jimmy Fraser to see more ice time and work his way on to the scoresheet.

On defense the Harvard will turn to the senior Dylan Reese, who was an All-ECAC second teamer to lead the Crimson. Reese along with sophomore Brian McCafferty will be expected to tow the load left by departed seniors Peter Hafner and Tom Walsh. Reese will have to get the young blueliners to gel early on but expect junior Dave McDonald and sophomore Jack Christian to contribute regularly on defense and to start to chip in on offense for the Crimson.

In net is were Harvard will need a player to step up. Senior Justin Tobe has 11 career games under his belt and sophomore Mike Cosken only one. The loss of Daigneau will be a factor until a replacement can be found. Harvard has had luck with unknown goalies in the past however in Dov Gromet-Morris and Daigneau, however it will be a question mark for Donato in the early going.

Harvard is a team that can easily finish in the second tier of the ECAC if things do not click in net. However Ted Donato knows how to motivate his players and with a solid offensive attack and a up and coming defense there is no reason why Harvard wont contend for a first round bye.

Best Case Finish - 2nd
Worst Case Finish - 6th

CHF's Pick - 3rd

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

ECAC Season Preview - Dartmouth

Dartmouth Big Green

Last Years Finish - Tied for 1st, won tie break against Colgate

Key Returnees - David Jones Jr. F, Tanner Glass Sr. F, Nick Johnson Jr. F, Mike Devine Jr. G

Key Losses - Mike Ouellette F, Eric Przepiorka F, Sean Offers D

It all came down to one game. Dartmouth had clinched the overall number one seed in the regular season and had swept upset minded Yale in the second round of the ECAC tournament. Poised with an 18-11-2 record overall, Dartmouth needed one win in Albany to all but assure themselves of a NCAA tournament birth. The Big Green were tuned up and ready to go. They had won ten of their last fourteen games, outscoring their opponents by a two to one ration on the run. Their defense had allowed only two teams to score more than three goals, and they won both games. Dartmouth was taking on Ivy rival Harvard and a win would send them to the dance.

Harvard hung a ten spot on the Big Green.

There would be no ECAC championship, no NCAA tournament for the Big Green. However there would be a solid core of returning forwards and a returning goaltender who has something to prove to the league and the rest of the country. Dartmouth has the talent to be the top team in the league again, but the questions linger from the disappointment in Albany, and in a league that has only seen one team repeat as regular season champions since 1995 it is tough to pick the Big Green to repeat.

Up front Dartmouth losses two power forwards in Przepiorka and Ouellette but they arguably to of the best junior forwards in the league to replace them. David Jones and Nick Johnson will be expected to provide a large part of the Big Green offense. An offense that was first last year averaging 3.82 goals per league contest. Adding to the offensive talent is senior Tanner Glass who will look to take some of the focus off pre-season all league selection Jones and put up big numbers himself. The possible weak spot in the offense is the sophomore class, who last year only factored in 12 percent of Dartmouth's offense last year will need to make a bigger contribution in the upcoming season.

On defense the Big Green are lead by seniors Grant Lewis and Ben Lovejoy. Dartmouth gave up 2.55 goals per league game last year which was good for fourth overall. The defense looks to contribute more to the offense but is not an integral part of the offensive success of the team. While the defense was sound last year they are not immune to breakdowns. The Harvard game is an example of this but Dartmouth allowed teams to score four goals or more nine time over the course of the season. Dartmouth needs to clamp down this year on the blue line to repeat as champs. This may prove difficult as the defense behind Lewis and Lovejoy is pretty green. With only Mike Hartwick and John Gibson getting serious ice time last year. Head coach Bob Gaudet will need his incoming class to step up on the third defensive line.

In net Mike Devine came through with a solid sophomore campaign and he will be expected to continue this trend in the upcoming season. Devine will be called on more this year as Dartmouth's defense develops in front of him. Whether or not Dartmouth contends for the top spot in the league and on a national level will weight on Devine's play in net early in the season.

Best Case Finish - 1st
Worst Case Finish - 5th

CHF's Pick - 4th

Monday, October 02, 2006


Nothing says awesome like a season opening sweep by a combined 13-1 margin. The Women's Hockey Team came out and laid the smackdown on the Vermont Friday, defeating the Catamounts 9-0. Then followed it up with a 4-1 performance on Saturday.

Some notes:

  • Melissa Marshall is already one point away from her totals last year after scoring two goals and and four assists this weekend.
  • Marie Jo-Gaudet also had a six point weekend tallying three goals and three assists.
  • Each of Clarkson incoming freshman recruits got on the scoreboard this weekend.
  • Kira Hurley had her first shutout of the year on Friday. She stopped 17 of 18 shots over the weekend.
  • Clarkson was in the penalty box seven times this weekend. Despite this, Vermont went 0/7 on the PP.

    Clarkson Men's Team. Take note. You'll need 14 to top the Women this weekend!