February 6, 2014

Sacred Heart Opens Key Atlantic Hockey Series With Holy Cross Friday Night

Game Notes

Holy Cross Crusaders (7-16-3, 6-10-3 AHA) vs. Sacred Heart Pioneers (7-19-0, 6-13-0 AHA)

Feb. 7, 7:05 p.m. - Milford Ice Pavilion (1,000) - Milford, Conn.

Feb. 8, 7:00 p.m. - Hart Center (1,600) - Worcester, Mass.

Setting the Scene... Sacred Heart opens a home-and-home series with Holy Cross Friday night at Milford Ice Pavilion.

Last Time Out... Niagara earned a split of last weekend's series with the Pioneers last Saturday, defeating Sacred Heart 4-1. Sophomore Jacob Brightbill scored his first career goal in the loss.

All-Time vs. Holy Cross... The Crusaders lead the all-time series with Sacred Heart 28-26-2. Holy Cross has won six of the last seven meetings, including a 4-3 win in Worcester, Mass. on Nov. 1. Sacred Heart beat Holy Cross 7-3 at Milford Ice Pavilion last year.

Last Meeting... Holy Cross defeated Sacred Heart 4-3 at the Hart Center on Nov. 1. The Crusaders led 3-1 after the first period, with the Pioneers tying the game 3-3 in the second period on goals by Justin Danforth and Evan Jasper. Holy Cross' Brett Lubanski scored the game-winning goal with 45 seconds remaining in the third period. Danforth had three points in the game as Jasper and Jordan Minello each adding two points.

Nylen Beats The Buzzer... The Pioneers snapped a two-game losing streak Friday night with a 4-3 win over Niagara, winning in thrilling fashion. With three seconds left in the game, Brian Sheehan won a faceoff to Mitch Nylen who scored with 0.9 seconds left to break a 3-3 tie. The goal was Nylen's second power play goal and second game-winning goal of the season. The freshman defenseman had the game winner in Sacred Heart's 3-1 win over Bentley on Oct. 16.

Freshman Frenzy... Sacred Heart's freshman class has accounted for 86 of the Pioneers' 138 points so far this season. Justin Danforth leads the Pioneers with 20 points with Jordan Minello adding 14. The Pioneers are the one of only two teams in the nation to have freshmen as its top two scorers. Army is the other team in the country to have its top two scorers as freshmen.

Riding The CDM Line... Since being put on a line together on Jan. 11, Jeff Carroll, Justin Danforth, and Jordan Minello have combined for 20 points on seven goals and 13 assists. Carroll and Danforth each have seven points in the last six games, with Carroll scoring four goals with three assists. Danforth has six assists in the last six games. Minello has scored two goals with four assists on the line. 

Sheehan Back On The Scoresheet... Junior Brian Sheehan had his first multiple point game of the season last Friday night, scoring a goal and getting an assist on the game-winning tally in Sacred Heart's 4-3 win over Niagara. Prior to Friday night, Sheehan last scored a goal in the Pioneers' 4-1 win over Army on Nov. 23. He also didn't have a point in six straight games before getting two against Niagara. 

Scouting the Crusaders... Holy Cross enters the weekend with 15 points (6-10-3), three points clear of Sacred Heart in ninth place. The Crusaders are 3-1-1 in their last five games, taking three points last weekend at RIT. Holy Cross skated to a 3-3 tie last Friday before beating the Tigers 4-2 on Saturday. Senior forward Adam Schmidt leads Holy Cross with eight goals and 17 points. Five other Crusaders have at least 10 points. Junior goalie Matt Ginn has posted a 2.84 goals against average and a .914 save percentage this season.