Hockey East Weekend Preview
Game 3 at Colgate
Radio - WHUS 91.7 FM
Audio Stream - whus.org
Video - Patriot League Network
Live Stats - Colgate StatBroadcast
Twitter - @UConnMHOC
Game 4 at RIT
Radio - WHUS 91.7 FM
Audio Stream - whus.org
Video - RITAthletic.com
Live Stats - RITAthletic.com
Twitter - @UConnMHOC
The Huskies begin a stretch of playing their next eight of nine games on the road starting Friday night at Colgate. UConn will finish the weekend swing heading to the Blue Cross Arena in Rochester to take on former Atlantic Hockey foe RIT.
UConn is off to a 2-0-0 start to their season after sweeping Alabama Huntsville at the XL Center last weekend, 6-0 and 4-0. It is the first time since the 1998-99 season, UConn’s inaugural Division I season, that the Huskies opened the year 2-0. That season, UConn opened 4-0-1 over their first five games. The last time an UConn team opened 3-0 is the 1997-98 campaign.
UConn’s 10 goal weekend was the most goals the Huskies scored in a two-game series since beating Bentley in a home-and-home series in 2012-13 by scores of 4-1 and 9-0.
Senior goaltender Rob Nichols picked-up Hockey East Defensive Player of the week honors after backing both shutouts last weekend, stopping all 44 shots he faced.
Sophomore Tage Thompson got off to a blazing start, posting five points on the weekend on three goals and a pair of assists. Two of Thompson’s goals came at even strength, eclipsing his total from last season. During his rookie campaign, he scored 14 goals, 13 coming on the power play to lead the nation.
Senior Evan Richardson scored three times against UAH, twice in Friday’s 6-0 win to mark his first career multi-goal game. Junior Spencer Naas scored a pair in Saturday’s 4-0 win, his third career multi-goal effort.
Some of the newest Huskies also found the scoring sheet as freshmen Wyatt Newpower (1g) and Alexander Payusov (1a) recorded their first collegiate points and grad student Brian Morgan (1a) got his first point in a Husky uniform.
Sophomore Karl El-Mir is coming off a three-point weekend (1g/2a). El-Mir finished his rookie season with five points (3g/2a) over 21 games.
LAST MEETING WITH COLGATE - The Huskies split a weekend series with Colgate in their last meeting back in 2007-08. In game one of the series at Colgate, six difference Raiders found the back of the net on the way to a 7-1 win over the Huskies. Peter Bogdanich scored a pair and added an assist for Colgate in the win. In game two, Andrew Olson scored the game winner for UConn in overtime to give the Huskies a 2-1 win and a weekend split. Beau Erickson made 33 saves in net to get the win for UConn. Colgate took a 1-0 lead into the third period on a Tom Riley second period goal. The Huskies tied the game at 11:53 in the third as B.J. Bayers scored off a face-off to set up overtime.
SCOUTING THE RAIDERS - The Colgate Raiders are off to a 0-1-1 start to their season heading into this weekend. The Raiders open the year with three-straight at home and skated to a 2-2 tie with Army in their opener and fell 6-1 to No. 3 Boston University last weekend. Colgate is in a stretch of six-straight games against Hockey East competition facing Merrimack and Maine the next two weekends. Seniors Tim Harrison and Jake Kulevich each have two points to lead the squad. Colgate was picked 10th in the ECAC preseason media poll and 11th in preseason coaches’ poll.
UCONN VS. THE ECAC
- UConn is 16-52-9 all-time against teams from the ECAC.
- The Huskies will face Colgate, Quinnipiac and Yale this season and potentially Brown as well in the Desert Hockey Classic.
- The Huskies were 1-1-0 against the ECAC last season, beating Brown 3-1 and falling to then No. 2 Quinnipiac, 6-2, both at home.
- Under head coach Mike Cavanaugh, the Huskies 3-3-1 against the ECAC.
- The Huskies have faced Brown (2-5-1), Colgate (2-5-0), Dartmouth (0-2-0), Princeton (0-3-0), Quinnipiac (11-16-2), Rensselaer (0-3-2), Union (1-7-4) and Yale (0-11-0) from the league.
LAST MEETING WITH RIT - In their last season of play in Atlantic Hockey, the Huskies swept a two-game home series with RIT at the Freitas Ice Forum, 2-1 and 6-2. In game one, the Huskies got goals from Trevor Gerling and Shawn Pauly and were backed by 32 saves from Matt Grogan in the win. In game two, UConn senior captain Brant Harris recorded his first career hat-trick to lead the Huskies to a sweep thanks to a 6-2 win. The Huskies built a 5-0 lead into the third period on the strength of Harris’ three-goal night while Grogan turned in 26 saves in net to earn his second win on the weekend.
SCOUTING THE TIGERS – The RIT Tigers opened their season last weekend with a pair of Atlantic Hockey match-ups with visiting Robert Morris. The Tigers took the opener 6-3 but fell short in game two, 6-5. The Tigers are the two-time defending Atlantic Hockey Conference champions, looking for the league’s second three-peat (Air Force, 2007-2009) and are coming off of an 18-15-6 season in which they won the league title as a No. 5 seed. RIT was picked to finish atop the league standings a third time in the annual AHA coaches’ poll. Sophomore Liam Kerins and senior Caleb Cameron each had four-point weekends against RMU. Kerins scored a pair of goals as did freshman Adam Brubacher on the weekend. Senior goaltender Mike Rotolo stopped 43 shots on the weekend
UCONN VS. ATLANTIC HOCKEY -
- UConn was one of the inaugural members of the Atlantic Hockey Association and played in the conference for 11 seasons (2003-2014).
- Since leaveing the league and joining Hockey East, the Huskies are 1-3-0 against their former conference.
- Last season, UConn lost to Army, 2-0, and Sacred Heart, 7-4, both at home.
- The Huskies have three Atlantic Hockey opponents on this year’s schedule in RIT, Sacred Heart and AIC
- The Huskies best-ever finish in the league came in 2012-13 when they posted a 19-14-4 mark.
- UConn advanced to the AHA semifinals four times but never appeared in a league championship game.
NICHOLS WINS HEA DEFENSIVE AWARD - UConn senior Rob Nichols took home this week’s Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week award after posting consecutive shutouts last weekend. It is the third time in his career he has won the award.
For the second time in his career, and the second time in school history, Nichols came up with consecutive clean sheets, blanking UAH 6-0 and 4-0 at the XL Center in the season opening series. For Nichols, it was the ninth and 10th shutouts of his career. Last season, he became the first goaltender in school history with consecutive shutouts after beating Arizona State, 3-0, and Maine, 1-0, both on the road.