UConn Faces Off With Mercyhurst in AHA Semifinal Friday Night

Co-captain Alex Gerke and the Huskies face off with Mercyhurst at 7:30.
Co-captain Alex Gerke and the Huskies face off with Mercyhurst at 7:30. UCONNHUSKIESDOTCOM

March 22, 2013

STORRS, Conn. - The University of Connecticut men's ice hockey team takes on Mercyhurst for the right to play for its first Atlantic Hockey championship.

Quarterfinal Sweep: Connecticut advanced to the AHA semifinals with a two-game sweep of fifth-seeded Robert Morris at home, last weekend. The Huskies won by scores of 4-1 and 4-3 to run their record to 10-2-2 since last losing back-to-back games on January 19 and 22.

THE SERIES VS. HURST: Mercyhurst owns the all-time series with UConn, dating back to the 1991-92 season, 13-32-2.
• The two teams split the season series in Storrs, with the Huskies takng game one, 5-4.
• Connecticut leads the all-time series in playoff games, 4-2, including a quarterfinal sweep in 2011.

ROOKIE OF THE WEEK: Freshman Shawn Pauly was named AHA Rookie of the Week on Monday for his team-leading three points in the sweep over RMU. He previsously received that honor on January 7.

2013 HOCKEY: In UConn’s last 21 games since the turn of the calendar, the Huskies are 14-5-2, including 10-4-2 in AHA action. 
• UConn has outscored teams 72-51.
• The power play has gone 24-93 (25.8%); the PK has gone 79-92 (85.9%).
• 16 players have combined to score 72 goals. 20 of 22 skaters have notched a point.
Brant Harris (12-15-27), Jordan Sims (7-17-24) and Sean Ambrosie (6-16-22) have led the scoring.
Matt Grogan owns an 13-2-2 record with a 1.96 GAA and a .937 save percentage over that stretch.

STREAKERS: After ending Robert Morris’ nationa-leading seven-game unbeaten streak on Friday, Connecticut enters Championship Weekend on a seven-game (6-0-1) unbeaten streak of its own; good enough for second in the country along with Notre Dame.



HITTING THE WINNING MARK: Connecticut secured a winning record for the 2012-2013 season with a 4-0 victory in the regular season finale at Sacred Heart. It marks the first winning record for the Huskies since the 1999-2000 season (19-16-1, MAAC Hockey Champions).

“THESE GO TO ELEVEN”: UConn posted a home record of 11-5-3, setting a program-mark for home wins in a season. It marked the third time (2006-07, 2011-12) that the Huskies have reached double figure wins at the Freitas Ice Forum since joining Atlantic Hockey.

REACHING FOR TWENTY: Connecticut picked up wins number 18 and 19 against Robert Morris to match its second highest win total in the Division I era, set in 1999-00. The Huskies last reached 20 wins in a season in its first Division I season (1998-99) with a 20-10-4 record. The all-time program record, and only other 20-win season, is 22 wins (1991-92).

GOTTA WIN THE CLOSE ONES: UConn is currently 7-3 in games decided by one goal.   UConn went 4-12 in games that were decided by one goal last year. 
• UConn has fallen by a 3-1 score three times this season, allowing a late empty-netter each time - at Bentley (11/17), vs. Canisius (12/1), vs. Minn. St. (12/30).

UCONN SPECIAL TEAMS: The Huskies are converting on the power play at 19.0% in 2012-13. UConn has scored on 29 of 153 opportunities.
• UConn started the season 1-31 on the power play in the opening five games. The Huskies scored in the opening game against UMass then failed to score on the PP in four straight.
• UConn had a PPG in six straight games prior to a 4-1 loss to HC on 2/15. 
• UConn has a PPG in and 17 of the last 22 games.
• UConn ranks sixth in AHA play at 19.5%, scoring on 24-of-123 attempts.
• Connecticut was sensational on the power play in 2011-12 at 25.7%.
• UConn ranked third in Division I behind Harvard (27.3) and Maine (26.7). UConn was just as dominant in AHA play.  In the AHA, UConn converted at a 25.3% (25/99) rate.

KILLING THEM SOFTLY: UConn’s PK was perfect against Sacred Heart in 11 chances and for the sixth weekend this season (11/9-10, 11/23-24, 12/29-30, 1/25-26, 2/10-11, 3/1-2).
• UConn sits at 86.1% on the season. That total ranks No. 9 in the NCAA and No. 2 in the AHA.  Opponents have notched 21 power-play goals on 151 attempts.
• In AHA contests, UConn ranks No. 2 at 88.5% behind Canisius (91.5).
• UConn ranked No. 13 in the NCAA and No. 3 in the AHA at 84.2% on the PK last season.

SPREADING THE WEALTH: Connecticut has five players with seven goals or more.
• On the season, 18 players have combined for 93 goals. 
• 24 of of 25 skaters have registered a point. Joe Schmitz (0 Pts) has played in just 1 game.
• In the RMU series, 15 of 18 skaters registered a point.

GROGAN’S TIME TO SHINE: On the season, Grogan stands at 14-3-3 with a 1.88 GAA and a .939 SV %.
• Grogan is second in the AHA with a .939 save percentage and 1.88 GAA.
• In the NCAA, Grogan ranks No. 5 in save percentage and No. 10 in GAA.
• Grogan stopped a career-high 48 shots in a 2-1 defeat at No. 2 Quinnipiac on Jan. 22 in Hamden.
• During four December games, he recorded a 1.37 goals against average in 176:39. The 1.37 GAA ranked ninth in NCAA DI in December.
• Grogan has a career record of 15-6-4 with a 2.14 GAA and a .929 save percentage.