February 18, 2005

Men's Ice Hockey Game Notes: Pioneers and Crusaders Battle for First

Feb. 18, 2005

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FAIRFIELD, CT (February 18) - Sacred Heart and Holy Cross face off for the thrid and final time this regular season, with first place, the season series, and the drivers seat to home ice advantage throughout the Atlantic Hockey tournament hanging in the balance. The Pioneers and Crusaders have each won a game in the other teams building for a 1-1-0 season series tie.

The Pioneers enter tonight's game looking to extend their three-game winning streak and looking to win the season series with the Crusaders at the same time. A win over Holy Cross would propell the Pioneers into sole possession of first place.

The high-powered duo of Garrett Larson and Pierre-Luc O'Brien currently sit in a second place tie in scoring in the conference. Larson has scored nine goals with 21 assists for 30 points while O'Brien has scored 16 goals and dished out 14 helpers for his 30 points is tied for fourth in the nation in power play goals. Eleven of his 14 strikes have come with the man advantage. Freshman Alexandre Parent is tied for the conference lead in rookie scoring, having netted seven goals, including the eventual game winner in SHU's last tilt with Holy Cross. He also has 13 assists for 20 points.

Senior goaltender Kevin LaPointe, the current Atlantic Hocky Goaltender of the week, posted a pair of come from behind wins over Army and Holy Cross to improve his overall record to 9-10-1. Over the two games, LaPointe posted a 2.00 goals against average and a .939 save percentage.

Holy Cross enters the weekend in first place in Atlantic Hockey, one point ahead of the Pioneers. However, the Crusaders has played one more conference game than Sacred Heart.

The high-octane Crusader offense is led by the trio of Pierre Napert-Frenette, James Sixsmith and Tyler McGregor. Napert-Frenette currently leads the league in points with 31, while Sixsmith leads the conference in assists with 23 and McGregor is tied with Sacred Heart's Pierre-Luc O'Brien in goal scoring with 16.

The goaltending tandem of Tony Quesada and Ben Conway have combined for a 2.81 goals against average with a .902 save percentage.