January 10, 2008

SHU and AIC Play Two on Ice This Weekend

Jan. 10, 2008

Setting the Scene... The Pioneer men's ice hockey team meets the Yellow Jackets of AIC for two games this weekend at the Milford Ice Pavilion. SHU is coming off a split with Air Force and sits in third place in the AHA standings. AIC beat Holy Cross on Tuesday night and is currently tied for eighth in the conference. Both games this weekend are set for a 7:05 pm faceoff. Coverage is available all weekend on the WICC 600 AM and on the B2 Network.

The Series... Sacred Heart is unbeaten in its last seven meetings with AIC going 6-0-1. The Pioneers eliminated the Yellow Jackets from last year's AHA Tournament with a 4-0 win in the quarterfinals. SHU also won both games against AIC during the regular season in Springfield. The Pioneers are 16-8-4 all-time against AIC.

SHU Splits With Air Force... The Pioneers split a pair of games with Air Force in Milford last week, winning the opener Friday before losing Saturday night. Goaltender Stefan Drew was spectacular in both games, stopping 74 of the 78 shots he faced on the weekend. He made 35 saves Friday night to earn a victory and then made 39 saves in Saturday's losing effort. Seniors Alex Parent and Scott Marchesi and junior Eric Giosa scored the Pioneer goals. Friday's win was the first time Sacred Heart had ever beaten Air Force in eight previous meetings. Saturday night marked the first loss on home ice for the Pioneers this year. SHU had been 4-0-1 in Milford prior to Saturday.

Balancing Act... Thirteen players have scored goals for SHU already this year. Sophomores Nick Johnson and Dave Jarman, along with Trapp all have five goals on the year. Junior Eric Giosa has six goals. Trapp and Boisvert each have a team leading 11 assists while Johnson has 10 helpers. Trapp and Boisvert are tied for sixth in the league in assists. Defensively, juniors Paul Ferraro and Dave Grimson each have two goals and six assists on the year.

Streaks and Trends... Johnson had his ten-game point scoring streak snapped at the Denver Cup....Trapp needs just one more point to reach the 100 point mark for his career...Trapp has registered a point in seven of their last nine games...Boisvert has tallied a point in 10 of his late 13 games...Sacred Heart is ranked seventh in the country in penalty minutes, with 310. The Pioneers are ranked second in the country in combined special teams at 56.3%.

Scouting the Yellow Jackets... American International starts the weekend with a 5-9-1 record, tied for ninth in the conference. The Yellow Jackets beat Holy Cross Tuesday night after losing a pair to Robert Morris over the weekend. Sophomore Mike McMillan leads AIC in scoring with eight goals and nine assists, 17 points. Senior Jereme Tendler has a team high 11 assists to go along with six goals and is tied for the league lead in scoring with 17 points. In goal, freshman Dan Ramirez has emerged as one of the best stories in the conference this season, posting a 2.82 goals against average in 14 games since taking over the number one goaltender's job early in the season. His line also shows a .904 save percentage and five wins. AIC's penalty kill is ranked last in Atlantic Hockey at 78.5%.

Up Next... The Pioneers travel to upstate New York next weekend for a crucial AHA series with the defending regular season champion, RIT. The teams will meet Friday and Saturday night at 7:05 pm at Ritter Arena. Both games will be broadcast on WICC 600 AM and on B2 Networks.