April 18, 2007
Fairfield, CT - Seniors Pierre-Luc O'Brien (Nicolet, QC) and Jason Smith (St. Lambert, QC) each recently completed stints in the American Hockey League, the top minor league to the NHL. O'Brien played two games with the Portland Pirates, the affiliate of the Anahiem Ducks, while Smith dressed for one game with the Lowell Devils, the top farm club for the New Jersey Devils.
O'Brien led the Pioneer men's ice hockey team in scoring during the regular season, with 16 goals, 29 assists and 45 points for the season. He was sixth in the Atlantic Hockey Association in scoring and fourth in the league in assists. For his career O'Brien has 67 goals, 91 assists and 158 points, all school records. O'Brien was named the CSTV/HCA National Player of the Month for November after piling up 23 points in nine games. He also was selected as an alternate for the Frozen Four Skills Competition.
Smith was the Pioneers number one goaltender for the last two seasons. During his time in net he posted 38 career victories, setting a new school record. Last year he finished the season with a 2.24 goals against average, the best single season mark in school history. He has twice set the school record for saves in a game, stopping 54 shots in his Pioneer debut on Providence on October 11, 2003 and again against Merychurst on January 28th, 2006. Each of the last two seasons he earned first team All-AHA honors. For his career, he put together a 38-29-4 record with a 2.74 goals against average and 9.12 save percentage. In the classroom, the business major has been named to All-Academic team the last two years. He was drafted by New Jersey in the 2003 NHL draft.