Northeastern Drops Thursday Tilt With Vermont, Lose Fifth Straight

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON- Entering a rare Thursday night matchup, both Northeastern and Vermont were reeling, losers of four straight and desperately looking for a win to get back on track.

Behind two first period goals, and a game-winner by Dan Senkbeil with under seven minutes remaining, Vermont did just that, defeating Northeastern 3-2 to win the team’s first Hockey East game of the season.

“It’s two teams that were scrambling for some wins,” said Vermont coach Kevin Sneddon. “We just went through 5 games that were extremely difficult, and exposed us on a lot of our weaknesses as well as our strengths, and helped us prepare for Hockey East play for this next stretch.”

“They’re (Northeastern) sitting there saying the same thing. They played some great teams and had some excellent play but not the results, so I think it was two teams pretty emotional trying to win a hockey game, so it certainly was a physical battle. We expected that, and certainly Northeastern didn’t disappoint. I thought they played hard.”

At the 13:46 mark of the period, Senkbeil, a senior forward with just 2 career goals in 76 games, fired a shot on net that hit the shoulder of Huskies net-minder Ryan Ruck and bounced into the back of the net.

“I had to calm the bench down,” said Sneddon. “It was actually good that they reviewed it because the guys were so pumped up for him. He doesn’t necessarily get a lot of minutes but he gives it his all every day, certainly every game, and it’s always nice to see those guys get rewarded and get a little bit of the limelight because they don’t often get called into the press room or have their name written in the newspaper articles. He was our big hero tonight, which was nice to see.”

Vermont (2-4-0, 1-0-0) received stellar goaltending by junior Mike Santaguida (21 saves), especially down the stretch where he was challenged with shots from all angles on a Northeastern (1-5-0, 0-1-0) team who are now losers of five straight.

Ryan Ruck started in net for Northeastern, and after giving up two first period goals, settled down saving 18 of the 21 shots he faced on the night, including 14 in the final two frames.

As Northeastern fans have been all too accustomed to early on this season, the Huskies dominated time of possession in the opening frame, but it was Vermont who reaped the benefits.

Most frustrating for Northeastern was an early 5-on-3 man advantage where the Huskies failed to throw much at Santaguida, and were held off the scoreboard, much attributed to a Vermont defense that jumped on pucks to clear into the Huskies defensive zone.

At the 12:30 mark in the first period, Anthony Petruzzelli lit the lamp to give the Catamounts a 1-0 lead.

Skating along the wall, Tom Forgione thread a pass to Petruzzelli in the slot, who was able to beat Ruck five-hole, silencing the Matthews Arena crowd.

With confidence oozing out of the Catamounts skates, they were able to get their second of the period at the 17:56 mark, giving Sneddon’s squad a two-goal advantage heading into the locker room.

After pouncing on a turnover in the Northeastern defensive zone, Jarrid Privitera’s initial shot on net was cleaned up by Ruck. Crashing the net, Mario Puskarich found the puck on his stick and sent it back over to Privitera in front of the net who potted his fourth of the season.

“It’s huge,” said Huskies coach Jim Madigan on the need to get out to a better start. “We worked on it all this week in practice about good starts. We did a lot of things in practice to create that tempo and energy.”

“The one thing is in the last three games, we’ve given up a goal in the first 3 minutes and multiple goals. This (game) we gave up a goal at 12:38 on a turnover defensively and then we gave up another one at 17:58 late in the period on a turnover, one of our senior defensemen was going to bank a puck off the back of the net. I don’t know when we taught that in practice, but he must be working on it on his own after practice. There’s two turnovers and two goals. They were opportunistic.”

Both teams were shutout in the middle frame, but it was Vermont who was handed a five-minute man advantage after Huskies defenseman Matt Benning was whistled for a high-sticking 13:28 into the period.

A Huskies penalty kill unit, which is sitting at just over 80% for the season, was able to keep Vermont largely out of their own offensive zone, having no problem clearing pucks down to Santaguida’s side of the ice.

The first six minutes of the third period belonged to the Huskies, courtesy of a five-minute power play of their own, after Ori Abramson was whistled for boarding.

Taking a pass from Eric Williams in the Huskies offensive zone, sophomore Dylan Sikura, skating towards the far goal line, fired an off-angle shot that caught Santaguida by surprise and cut the Vermont lead to one.

Continuing a relentless attack on the five-on-three, it took the Huskies just 2:01 to knot the score up.

Kevin Roy, skating along the blue line, got around a defender before dishing a pass to Stevens in the slot, who was able to beat Santaguida over his right shoulder.

Both teams would get another shot on the power play throughout the middle of the period, but it was Senkbeil’s even strength goal that proved to be the difference.

“This is the fifth time in a row where I can capsulize all 5 losses,” said Madigan, “us not defending at the net, giving up poor goals and not scoring, not being hungry enough at the offensive net. Discipline was good tonight, and our effort isn’t consistent with a team that had lost (five) in a row.”

“There was not enough desperation, sense of urgency for 60 minutes. It was there for a good part of it, but when you’re trying to get out of a tailspin, you need it to be for 60 minutes and it wasn’t there.”

This article can also be found on USCHO

Hockey East Notebook- 10/29/15

By: James Duffy

Weekend Review

The opening weekend of Hockey East play was hardly decisive to say the least. Of the five Hockey East matchups this weekend, three ended in ties, and the other games were a home-and-home between Boston University and Connecticut, that they ended up splitting. Merrimack and UMass Lowell played to a pair of 1-1 draws. As a result, the two undefeated teams held losses off their record; Lowell stayed ranked 7th, and Merrimack moved up two spots to 17.

The Massachusetts Minutemen fought back hard against New Hampshire in the other Hockey East game, scoring the game’s final five goals to end tied at six a piece. Led by sophomore Dennis Kravchenko’s third multi-point game of the early season, Massachusetts stayed undefeated and picked up their first Hockey East point. Forward Tyler Kelleher put up four points for New Hampshire in the game, and added another three in their win over Union the next night, making him the leading scorer in the nation with 11 points in five games.

The conference standings after the first slate of games have BU, UConn, UMass Lowell and Merrimack all tied at the top with two points in as many games. With the six other teams yet to play in-conference games, things will shake up, but that’s the first look we get at the standings.

Beyond conference play, there were some great games this weekend. Notre Dame sophomore goalie Cal Peterson turned away 78 shots in two games against #6 Minnesota-Duluth to carry the Irish to a pair of ties against an elite team. Providence managed to keep their loss column empty, improving to 4-0-1 on the season after sweeping Ohio State at home. Thatcher Demko was stellar in goal for Boston College, shutting out Colorado College twice and extending his personal shutout streak to 195:38 straight minutes.


Friday, October 23

New Hampshire 6-6 Massachusetts

UMass Lowell 1-1 Merrimack

Minnesota Duluth 3-3 Notre Dame

Ohio State 1-2 Providence

New Brunswick 5-1 Maine

North Dakota 2-0 Vermont

Northeastern 0-4 Minnesota

Boston College 3-0 Colorado College

Saturday, October 24

Connecticut 2-4 Boston University

Merrimack 1-1 UMass Lowell

Minnesota Duluth 3-3 Notre Dame

Ohio State 4-6 Providence

North Dakota 5-2 Vermont

New Hampshire 5-2 Union

Northeastern 3-4 Minnesota 

Boston College 5-0 Colorado College

Tuesday, October 27

Boston University 2-5 Connecticut

The Week Ahead

Conference play continues this weekend, and four more teams will play their first game for Hockey East points, leaving just Providence and Maine out of the picture. Northeastern and Vermont matchup for a home-and-home, and Notre Dame will head out to Connecticut for a pair of road games against Max Letunov and the up-and-coming Huskies. The most interesting conference game might come on Tuesday night, when Massachusetts takes on BC. Both teams have come out of the gate on fire, and the red hot Minutemen might be Demko’s toughest test to date.

#7 Umass Lowell will be up north for two games against #6 Minnesota-Duluth, which should end up being an interesting matchup to watch. Other ranked contests feature #5 Denver in town to take on BC and BU, ranked #4 and #8 respectively. Merrimack will play three games over the next week, hosting BU and New Hampshire over the weekend, and then taking on Bentley on Wednesday.

National Rankings

Providence – #3 (3)

Boston College – #4 (4)

UMass Lowell – #7 (7)

Boston University #8 (8)

Merrimack – #17 (19)

Others receiving votes:

Massachusetts: 38

Notre Dame: 20

Vermont: 6

CAA Preview- James Madison Dukes

By: Jake Fischer

Duke_Dog_logo_CMYKHead Coach: Matt Brady (8th season)

Last Season: 19-14 (12-6 CAA, share of CAA title)

Departures: G Shawn Wilborne, G Dante Sterling, F Hari Hall

Newcomers: G/F Shakir Brown, G Kevin Kangni, F Ramone Snowden

The Dukes claimed a share of the Colonial Athletic Association regular season conference title for the first time in 15 years one season ago, and three years after James Madison went dancing with a senior-laden group in 2012, Matt Brady has another deep, talented and athletic veteran core.

Senior point guard Ron Curry is the head of JMU’s snake. The 6’4 point guard from South Jersey has been knifing his way through opposing defenses since his high school days at Paul VI in Pennsauken, N.J. Curry is crafty enough to get all the way to rim off the bounce and strong enough to finish at the cup amongst the trees. When he doesn’t get to the basket, he has an array of shooters rotating around him. A 42.2 percent shooter from the outside in his own right a year ago, Curry is certainly a leading preseason candidate for CAA Player of the Year.

Curry has a plethora of shooters to feed on the perimeter. The Dukes don’t have a single center listed on their roster — and that’s by design. Brady prefers a five-out, motion style offense similar to, but less complex to Jay Wright’s Villanova Wildcats. Junior guard Jackson Kent drained 42.0 percent of his triples last season. Senior guard Winston Grays connected on 34.6 percent of his own. Red-shirt junior Dimitrije Cabarkapa, a 6’10 stretch-four, sank 40.0 percent of his own three-point tries.

James Madison has its sights set on repeating as CAA champs this winter. The Dukes would have been better positioned if swingman Andre Nation was running alongside Curry as well. Nation has been dismissed from the program after countless disciplinary issues left him off the court more often than he was hounding opponents’ best perimeter players.

To overcome the loss of Nation, the Dukes have added Shakir Brown, a 6’6, 225-pound forward from Angelina College in Lufkin, Texas. Brown averaged 20.3 points and 10.8 rebounds last season and will have two more years of eligibility remaining. JMU has also added 6’6, 210-pound forward Ramone Snowden from Niagara. Snowden, however, must sit the 2015-16 season due to NCAA transfer rules.

Bottom Line: The veteran Dukes are primed for success once more this winter. Brady, Curry and company will likely be one of the tougher opponents to storm Matthews come conference play.

CAA Preview- UNC-Wilmington Seahawks

By: Kyle Williams

UNC_Wilmington LogoCoach: Kevin Keatts (2nd Season)

Last Season: 18-14 (12-6 CAA, tied first in CAA)

Losses: G Freddie Jackson, G Addison Spruill, F Cedrick Williams

Newcomers: G Mark Matthews, G C.J. Bryce, F Trey Grundy, F Devontae Cacok



It would be fair to say that no one saw that coming. A year after finishing dead last in the CAA, UNCW looked like they were to suffer the same fate after a disappointing non-conference slate and a loss at Hofstra. Then they went on the road and shocked presumptive favorite Northeastern. They proceeded to beat Drexel and Delaware, and after a four-point loss to W&M, avenged the Hofstra loss by beating them on the road. By the end of the season, they had a share of the regular season title and were legitimate contenders in the conference tournament. They made it to the semifinals, where they lost to eventual champs NU, and made it back to postseason basketball for the first time in eight years via the CIT.

The stunning turnaround starts, first and foremost, with rookie coach Kevin Keatts, a former assistant to Rick Pitino at Louisville. His pedigree was obvious as the season moved along; he had his defense run everything off the three-point line, and proceeded to pack the paint with his big men to force turnovers. It worked, as the Seahawks led the conference in three-point defense, blocks and steals. On offense, he kept it simple and trusted his guards to run the offense. Addison Spruill and Freddie Jackson earned that trust, as they combined to average 27ppg and helped UNCW crack 70ppg as a team. All-CAA rookie point guard Jordan Talley led the team in assists and was second in the conference in steals, and they had two guys average at least one block per game (and another at 0.8).

This year brings changes to the squad, but a certain level of optimism as well. Jackson and Spruill are gone, along with Cedrick Williams, who led the conference in blocked shots. However, the newcomers have impressed in preseason, as the four new recruits have combined for 85 points over two games. Guards Mark Matthews and C.J. Bryce have led the class, with both shooting over 50% from the field. C.J. Gettys, a true seven-footer who averaged a block per game, will take over Williams’s minutes, and Chuck Ogbodo should be a serviceable backup big. If Talley can transition into a starter’s role and be the facilitator he was last year, this team has the talent to beat anyone in the conference, and will be a tough out come tournament time.

Bottom Line: After years of being in the irrelevant, UNCW looks primed to contend as long as Keatts is around. The defense system will be good enough, and there is a lot of potential on this offense. The biggest questions will be how the freshmen handle the transition to the college game, and if Talley is ready to run the offense himself. He’s not on the level of Kory Holden, but he has the skills to be an effective college point guard. The influx of new players will keep the ceiling on this year’s team slightly lower than last year, but they will be finish in the top four and contend for the CAA’s lone bid to the tournament.

Northeastern Falls to Minnesota, Swept in Weekend Series

By: Dan McLoone

MINNEAPOLIS- It doesn’t seem to matter who is in goal, as the Northeastern Huskies simply cannot seem to stop their opponents from scoring early goals. After an admirable showing in relief of Derick Roy last night, freshman goalie Ryan Ruck wasn’t as solid in his first career start, allowing three goals in the opening four minutes. Although the Huskies fought back, the deficit once again proved too big, as Minnesota finished the weekend off with a 4-3 win.

Hudson Fasching got the scoring going early for the Golden Gophers, giving Minnesota to a 1-0 lead just 59 seconds into the game. Michael Brodzinski made the score 2-0 just two minutes later, firing a shot from the blue line past Ruck. Only 17 seconds later, Leon Bristedt got a stick on a loose puck in front of the net and poked it past Ruck to stake the Gophers to an early 3-0 lead, the Huskies fourth straight game in which they trailed by that deficit. Northeastern got one right back 28 seconds later, as John Stevens sent home a puck in front of the net off of an assist from his brother Nolan.

“Obviously not the start that we were looking for,” said Huskies coach Jim Madigan. “We talked about getting off to a good start and trying to play with the lead and [we] fell behind 3-0 quickly there for six, seven minutes and we called a timeout [and] scored.”

“Then [we] gave them an opportunity late in the first period on a power play situation that…makes it 4-1. But from that point on I liked the way our team responded.They showed some resolve and resiliency in the second and third period.”

Ruck settled in after the early defensive slump, but gave up a power play goal to Fasching, his second goal of the night, with just under 1:30 left in the first period. Fasching was looking to send a centering pass into the middle, but his pass deflected off of Colton Saucerman and into the net to dig the Huskies a 4-1 hole going into the locker room. After giving up three goals on six shots to start the game, Ruck allowed just one more on his next 26 shots faced to give Northeastern a chance to come back.

“I thought Ryan Ruck was really good in net, he gave up four goals in that first period, obviously not his fault,” said Madigan “Then he just responded, stopped a penalty shot that was big at the time that gave us some momentum and gave us some life.”

However, a frustrated Husky squad once again was unable to climb out of an early hole. They looked sloppy defensively throughout the night, allowing numerous Gophers to skate free in front of the net and get open looks on Ruck.

“We didn’t protect him at all in front of the net for the first period, and then we did a better job in the second and third period with our net-front presence,” said Madigan.

The Huskies came out of the locker room looking to cut into the lead, and were able to do so despite not really controlling the pace of play in the second period. Sam Kurker cut the score to 4-2 just two minutes into the period, managing to send a shot from the right of the net off of Minnesota goalie Eric Schierhorn’s left skate and into the net. With just over seven minutes remaining, freshman Eric Williams scored his first career goal for the Huskies, sending a shot from just past the right faceoff circle through traffic and into the far corner of the net to trim the lead to one. The goal was Northeastern’s lone score on the power play in nine attempts on the weekend.

Minnesota had an opportunity to extend the lead later on in the second when Matt Benning took down Vinni Lettieri on a breakaway to give the Gophers a penalty shot. Lettieri tried to go five-hole on Ruck, but the netminder stood strong and blocked the attempt to preserve the 4-3 scoreline.

The two goals in the second period weren’t enough for Northeastern, as Minnesota packed it in on defense in the third. The Huskies had some great opportunities, most notably with just under a minute left to play as a loose puck in front of the net looked like it would be sent home. Schierhorn stood strong in goal for the Gophers, however, continuing his strong form from a shutout on Friday night.

“We just need everyone to be focused and dialed in from the get-go and we’re chasing games,” said Madigan. “We can’t chase games during the season. If you’re chasing games you’re just not going to win too many hockey games.”

Northeastern allowed 32 shots on the night while also committing seven penalties. The win brings Minnesota to 2-3 on the season, while the loss drops the Huskies to 1-4 heading into a Halloween weekend matchup against Vermont. The Thursday and Saturday night games can be heard on WRBB.

Josh Brown contributed to this article.

Schierhorn Shines as Huskies Get Shutout by Minnesota

By: Dan McLoone

MINNEAPOLIS- It was a tale of two goalies on Friday night, as Minnesota welcomed Northeastern to Mariucci Arena by scoring three quick goals on Derick Roy to force an early goalie change for the Huskies. Freshman Ryan Ruck replaced Roy just over eight minutes into the game and performed admirably, making several highlight-reel saves as the Golden Gophers skated away with a 4-0 victory, dropping the Huskies to 1-3 on the season.

        Roy struggled right out of the gate, allowing Tommy Novak to find an opening in front of the net on a power play and slot away a centering pass from Justin Kloos for a 1-0 lead just over six minutes into the first period. Two minutes later, Jack Glover lit the lamp for Minnesota, sending a puck through Roy’s five hole for a 2-0 lead. Exactly three minutes later, Tyler Sheehy sent a shot over Roy’s right shoulder to grab a 3-0 lead. Minnesota added a fourth goal with just under three minutes left in the game, as a Hudson Fasching centering pass deflected off of Colton Saucerman and underneath Ruck’s legs.

“The first five to six minutes we played pretty well. We wanted to have a quick start. And then we took a penalty, and they’re a team that’s been struggling to score goals so they moved them around and got one,” said Northeastern head coach Jim Madigan.

“Then we gave up a second goal. That was one that I’m sure we’d all love to have back, and then we just couldn’t stop the bleeding.”

        After allowing seven goals in two games last weekend against Bentley, Roy was on a short leash by Madigan, who yanked his netminder after allowing three goals on just four shots. Ruck immediately settled in, making many nice saves as Northeastern worked to get themselves back in the game, including an incredible post-to-post save with his blocker hand in the second period to deny the Gophers a fourth.

“I thought he played really well,” said Madigan on Ruck. “He stood up, he made an unbelievable save. I wish they didn’t score that last one at the end because I thought we just tired them [out] for the last two or three minutes of the game.”

        The Huskies tried to turn the game around following their early deficit, but Minnesota freshman goalie Eric Schierhorn had himself quite the night. Schierhorn weathered an onslaught of Northeastern shots throughout the rest of the game, making incredible save after incredible save to maintain the shutout. He stopped three different one-on-one breakaways, one each from Adam Gauedette, Sam Kurker and Kevin Roy. He also made an astounding cross-ice glove save on a Dylan Sikura one-timer in the first period.

“Once it went to three…from that point on and into the second and third period, I thought we played well,” said Madigan. “I thought we competed, we got pucks down low, we made some plays, we settled down, and had some really good grade-A chances.”

After an incredibly sloppy opening eight minutes for the Huskies, they played the Gophers evenly throughout the rest of the night, trading shots on goal. However, their effort for a comeback was in vain, as they just couldn’t get anything past Schierhorn.

“I’m not into moral victories, but I did like how our team responded after being [down] three to love,” said Madigan. “I thought at that point they really competed. We just have to respond a lot sooner than we did here tonight.”

There were 17 penalties combined on the night, including a scrum late in the third period that resulted in seven players sitting in the box at once. The penalties allowed Minnesota to score their first goal, while Northeastern finished the night 0-6 on the power play.

The win is Minnesota’s first of the season, while the Huskies dropped their third consecutive game. The two teams will square off again on Saturday night at 9 p.m. ET, which can be heard on WRBB.

Josh Brown contributed to this article.

Hockey East Notebook- 10/22/15

By: James Duffy

Weekend Review

Three weeks into the NCAA Hockey season, with every Hockey East team now having played a real game, it looks like we’re starting to get an early picture of where most teams stand this season.

Providence College still held their championship form this weekend. After raising their National Championship banner on Friday night, the #3 ranked Friars defeated Holy Cross 4-1, led by goaltender Nick Ellis’ 31 save performance. Boston University raised a banner of their own this weekend before a 4-1 win as well, hoisting the Hockey East regular season banner and taking down Wisconsin afterwards for their first win of the season. 

UMass Lowell continued their great start to the new year, sweeping Colorado College over the weekend. Goalie Kevin Boyle continues to lead the River Hawks, as he is now 3-0 on the year with a .957 save percentage. Massachusetts had a similarly strong showing last weekend, beating Sacred Heart in their only contest 5-2. Dennis Kravchenko tallied a hat trick for the Minutemen, and added an assist, earning himself Warrior Hockey Player of the Week honors.

Vermont, looking to ride the momentum of a huge win over Minnesota, struggled against Omaha, who rose to the #2 spot nationally after beating UVM twice. Merrimack slaughtered Clarkson on Friday by a score of 7-1, and on Saturday beat St. Lawrence 3-1 to stay undefeated. Collin Delia got both wins for the Warriors and senior forward Brian Christie had four points on the weekend.

UMass, UMass Lowell, Providence and Merrimack are the only remaining teams in Hockey East without a loss on the season.


Friday, October 16:

Wisconsin 0-6 Boston College

Clarkson 1-7 Merrimack

Bentley 3-2 Northeastern

Notre Dame 7-4 Penn State

Maine 1-1 Union

Sacred Heart 2-5 Massachusetts

St. Lawrence 3-2 New Hampshire

Arizona State 1-5 Connecticut

Omaha 4-3 Vermont

Colorado College 2-3 UMass Lowell

USA Under-18 Team 7-4 Boston University (Exh.)

Holy Cross 1-4 Providence

Saturday, October 17:

Notre Dame 3-5 Penn State

Maine 0-2 Union

Colorado College 1-2 UMass Lowell

Clarkson 4-3 New Hampshire

Northeastern 1-4 Bentley

Omaha 3-1 Vermont

Wisconsin 1-4 Boston University

St. Lawrence 1-3 Merrimack

Tuesday, October 20:

Maine 0-4 Quinnipiac

The Week Ahead

17 games will be played this weekend with every team in action, and several highlight games on the slate.

Play within the conference kicks off this weekend, and six Hockey East teams will compete against one another. UMass Lowell and Merrimack, two undefeated teams, will have a home-and-home series on Friday and Saturday, with both teams looking to rise further in the rankings. Connecticut and Boston University will do the same on Saturday and Tuesday. New Hampshire and Massachusetts will go at it for just one game, with puck drop on Friday night at 7.

Notre Dame will have a tough test, hosting Minnesota Duluth,  the 5th ranked team nationally, for a pair of games in South Bend. Northeastern will hit the road and travel to Minnesota for two, looking to take advantage of the still winless Golden Gophers. Vermont will take on the #1 team in the nation twice when North Dakota comes to town, and they’ll look to use home ice to their advantage.

National Rankings

Currently ranked Hockey East teams, according to USCHO (last weeks ranks in parenthesis).

Providence – #3 (2)

Boston College – #4 (4)

UMass Lowell – #7 (9)

Boston University – #8 (6)

Merrimack – #19 (NR)

Others receiving votes:

Massachusetts: 39

Notre Dame: 25

Vermont: 19

CAA Preview- Hofstra Pride

By: Dan McLoone


Head Coach: Joe Mihalich (3rd Season)

Last Season: 20-14 (10-8, 5th in Colonial Athletic Association)

Losses: G Daryl Fowlkes, G Eliel Gonzalez, F Moussa Kone, G Dion Nesmith

Newcomers: G Desure Buie, F Ibrahim Djambo, F Denton Koon, G Justin Wright-Foreman

Hofstra managed to pull a complete turnaround within just one season, doubling their win total from 2013-2014 and coming just a heartbreaking three in double overtime away from a CAA Finals appearance. Returning four of their five starters from a squad that led the CAA in scoring with 78.5 points per game, the Pride are poised to continue off of last year’s success.

Most of that success can be handed to transfer guard Juan’ya Green, who averaged an impressive 17.1 points (3rd in the CAA) and 6.5 assists (1st in the CAA) while racking up an All-CAA First Team spot. Now a senior, Green will be one of the favorites to win player of the year. Fellow Niagara transfer and senior guard Ameen Tanksley played an excellent Robin to Green’s Batman, averaging 16.2 points (4th in CAA) and 5.5 rebounds. Joining them in the backcourt is junior guard Brian Bernardi, one of the top deep threats in the conference. Bernardi shot .404 from 3-point range last season, good for fourth in the CAA, while averaging 11.6 points.

Senior forward Malik Nichols is the last returning starter, but he will miss the defensive presence of graduated forward Moussa Kone. Sophomore Rokas Gustys will likely step into that starting role after emerging down the stretch as the team’s leading rebounder (5.7 per game) and a reliable interior defender. Two veteran newcomers could see significant minutes in the post, as well. 6’10” senior Clemson transfer Ibrahim Djambo and 6’8” graduate Princeton transfer Denton Koon will be key pieces for Mihalich, and Koon could step into a starting spot if the younger Gustys struggles to adapt to the role change.

After graduate guard Dion Nesmith left, junior Jamall Robinson will try to step into his spot as a sixth man after playing in every game last season. The Pride’s two freshmen guards, Desure Buie and Justin Wright-Foreman will also look to bring a change of pace off the bench when Green, Bernardi and Tanksley need rests.

Bottom Line: With Green and Tanksley ready for their senior year, Hofstra will once again be a guard-oriented team that takes a lot of jumpers. Losing Kone in the post stings defensively, but the newcomers should bring enough to the table to make Hofsta a top offensive rebounding team once again. With a strong starting lineup and energy players coming off of the bench, the Pride are one of the favorites to win the CAA. Expect no worse than a top-3 finish, and look for Mihalich’s team to be vying for a spot in March Madness at the end of the year.

Bentley Completes Weekend Sweep of Northeastern With 4-1 Win Saturday Night

By: Josh Brown

WATERTOWN, Mass- For Bentley, Saturday night’s game against Northeastern meant a little more than just your average home game.

The Falcons, for the first time, hosted a Hockey East school at the John A. Ryan Skating  Arena and did so victoriously, beating the Huskies 4-1 to complete the weekend sweep.

Once again Jayson Argue stole the show for Bentley (2-2), stopping 40 of the 41 shots he faced on the night, just a day after turning in an impressive 49-save effort in a 3-2 win on Friday. Derick Roy made 17 stops on the night for Northeastern (1-2).

“Obviously pretty proud of our guys to come out and play the style that they played for 60-minutes,” said Bentley coach Ryan Soderquist. “Actually, last night I was pretty embarrassed of our team’s effort last night. Stole one last night, our goalie stole one last night, but all-in-all I thought our goalie played extremely well again tonight, but I also thought our boys played 60-minutes of hockey and I thought we earned that victory.”

Undisciplined play continued to haunt the Huskies, with the team taking seven penalties for a total of 9:38 on the penalty kill.

“Every time we started to get some things going we got a penalty,” said Northeastern coach Jim Madigan, “or we just fought it at the net again. We had some really good chances. We didn’t finish at the net again tonight, then we got frustrated again and that showed with our lack of discipline.”

“And it’s our older players, they’ve got to play smarter. We rely on them to play and help us win, not be in the penalty box, and we got to learn from it.”

Much like Friday night, the Huskies controlled the shot margin in the opening frame, this time by a 16-7 margin, but it was Bentley who was able to get pucks in the net, the first of which came via Mike Berry just 1:13 into the game.

Setting up in the offensive zone, Berry unleashed a rocket that hit the top of Roy’s glove and bounced into the back of the net.

Just over five minutes later Will Suter extended the lead to two.

Fighting for position in the slot, Suter was able to get a piece of Matt Blomquist’s shot from just inside the blue line and redirect it by Roy.

Meanwhile, Argue continued to be the glue that held the Falcons together all series long. At times being peppered with shots by Huskies desperate to spark-plug the team and get the offense rolling, the sophomore was perfect in the period, stopping all 16 shots he faced.

“I thought their goalie obviously played well,” said Huskies coach Jim Madigan, “so give the goalie credit. And we didn’t elevate pucks enough. Their goalie is down and he covers the bottom-half very well and we just couldn’t get it up.”

Midway through the second period, on a five-on-three man-advantage, the Falcons upped the margin to three.

Cycling the puck in the offensive zone, Blomquist found Andrew Gladiuk, who had a hat-trick in Friday night’s win, who then proceeded to fire a wrister from the right face-off circle that snuck under the arm of Roy.

Early in the third period, Bentley was able to net a fourth goal, signaling the end of the night from Roy, who was immediately replaced with freshman Ryan Ruck.

Collecting a puck in the Northeastern zone, sophomore Kyle Schmidt danced into the slot and fired a shot that caught Roy cheating to make it 4-0.

The Huskies would get one back mid-way through the third when Nolan Stevens took a pass and immediately fired it over the shoulder of Argue, but that would be all they could muster up.

“Obvious we were extremely happy with Northeastern coming here,” said Soderquist. “I have a great respect for their program to give us the opportunity to come here and play. We’re a growing program and it’s going to take people like Jim Madigan, who have class for the game and want the game to grow to come into a building like ours, it does a tremendous amount for our program.”

Bentley Receives Hat Trick from Andrew Gladiuk, Upends Northeastern 3-2

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON- Despite outshooting Bentley 51-11 and getting two third period goals, it was not enough, as the Falcons received a hat-trick from Andrew Gladiuk en route to a 3-2 win over Northeastern Friday night at Matthews Arena.

Bentley (1-2) goalie Jayson Argue made 49 saves on the night, while Huskies (1-1) net-minder Derick Roy turned aside just 8 shots in the contest.

“Obviously goaltending and special teams wins games, and I thought we did a good job in both of those departments,” said Bentley coach Ryan Soderquist. “That was a special effort by Jayson Argue tonight, you’ve got to give him credit, that was a special effort.”

“Northeastern, it wasn’t the fact that they weren’t putting the puck in areas to score, he (Argue) just made some phenomenal saves. That will definitely go down in history as one of the best goaltending performances we’ve seen here at this program.”

Despite holding a 20-1 edge in the shot department, it was the second of Bentley’s shots, with just five seconds left in the first period, which produced the first score of the game.

On a face-off win in their own offensive zone, Kyle Schmidt put a shot on net that was blocked down in front, but unfortunately for the Huskies, floated right to the trailing stick of Gladiuk who was able to easily soar the rebound over Roy’s left shoulder for the early lead.

The second period was more of the same, with the Huskies spending a majority of the period in their own offensive zone peppering Argue with shots, but yet again the only goal of the period came via Gladiuk, this time on the power play.

Passing across the blue-line, Matt Blomquist found Tanner Jago, who skated towards the slot before riffling a cross-ice pass to a wide-open Gladiuk who beat Roy glove-side for his second of the night.

Already down 2-0 at that point, Nolan Stevens, showing some frustration at the Huskies lack of scoring despite dominating the tempo of the game, took a slashing call with just six seconds remaining in the period, a penalty that came back to bite the Huskies.

“As far as our play was concerned, this is a 60-minute game,” said Huskies coach Jim Madigan, “and we’ve talked about that all year long. From last year and carrying over into this year, we’ve talked about discipline and you can’t give a team, when you have them on the ropes, opportunities and that’s what we did.”

Carrying the man-advantage over into the third period, Gladiuk got the Falcons rolling right where they left off, completing the hat trick just 49 seconds into the frame. Blomquist, skating along the right side of the ice, caught Roy struggling to track the puck, and hit Gladiuk with a pass at the left face-off dot with a wide open net to shoot at.

Still firing shots at Argue from all directions, it finally paid off for Northeastern when they netted their first of the night on the power play 4:39 into the third.

Sitting on the goal line, Zach Aston-Reese received a pass from Kevin Roy, and proceeded to backhand it to defenseman Colton Saucerman, who was all alone on the weak side to tap it in and cut the deficit to two.

Despite numerous odd-man rushes to the net, and an overwhelming majority of the time spent in their offensive zone, it took Northeastern over 11 minutes to get it within one. A heads-up play by Aston-Reese found John Stevens all alone in the high slot, who then fired a rocket on net that sent the “Dog House” into a frenzy, but proved to be too little too late.

A furious rally, most notably a Garret Cockerill one-timer that rang post, served as several breathtaking moments for Huskies fans, but Argue stood strong preserving the win.

“We can look at the shots and feel good about the fact that we outshot them 51-11,” said Madigan, “but this game isn’t measured by shots, it’s measured by who has the most goals at the end of the game.”

“I thought our kids were ready to start and play the game, and we had a game plan going in, we executed some of it and we couldn’t finish at the net. At the end of the day they finished at the net and we didn’t.”

This article can also be found on USCHO