Northeast Generals Player Profile: Viktor Solokhin

For the NA3HL Northeast Generals, they were able to get the services of a player looking to play the North American Game. 17 year old Viktor Solohkin is a power winger with strong skating skills. He has come into the the NA3HL group and made an immediate impact. In four games, the six foot tall winger has put up four points, and he is earning time on Coach Daryl Locke’s first line. For a Generals team that has yet to lose, and has eyes on a return trip to the Fraser Cup in March, adding Viktor is like bringing talent upon talent to Attleboro.

He is a smooth skater with a keen hockey sense for where to be. In the long term, his shot has potential to be even better than it is, with a decent release already in his arsenal. If the St. Petersburg native can continue to grow under Locke’s and Bryan Erikson’s tutelage, then the sky is the limit for him in North America. He plays like someone who has been there before, and already has a growing following of his work. If he keeps up his torrid start with the Generals, then higher levels of junior hockey, and perhaps Division One College hockey could very well be in his future.

NA3HL General Manager Bryan Erikson had the following to say about one of the newer NA3HL Generals.

“Viktor has come in a little late due to visa issues but he obviously had been putting in work. He has a nice long fluid stride that will only get more powerful as he gets stronger. He is very big for his age and just need to add some muscle. But he knows how to play, where to be on the ice and how to execute Darryl’s game plan. Point wise I think he is a bit ahead of where we thought he was going to be but we are delighted with his quick assimilation to the North American style of hockey we play. I don’t think he has a real cap on his potential yet. He just needs to keep working and he will have a lot of opportunities at the next level of junior hockey.”

Check out the recruiting video Viktor put together to get a better idea of his strengths, and to see why the Generals are so happy for him to finally be in Attleboro.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Northeast Generals: Week in review

Photo Credit :Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

For the NAHL and NA3HL Generals, this week has brought building and sucess.

The NAHL Generals went 1-1 on the week, getting back in the win column on Saturday night with a Brent Keefer overtime winner . The Oklahoma native is on his last year of junior hockey and drawing more interest from Divison one schools each time he plays.

Head Coach Bryan Erikson summed up the weekend well, saying ” Friday was very disappointing. We played a very good 2 periods but the wheels came off the bus in the 3rd and we looked like we just gave up. It was tough. And we had a conversation as a team as to what type of team we are going to be. Saturday we spoke about getting back to pucks in deep, finishing hits and being system responsible. And I thought the kids did an amazing job. We killed off 4 penalties late including 3 minutes of 5 on 3 in the 3rd and then were able to execute a nice play in OT for the win. We need to control ourselves so we don’t have so many highs and lows and work on getting to consistent good hockey.”

NAHL Box Scores

Friday

New Jersey Titans 7 at Northeast Generals 1 – Status: Final
Friday, October 15, 2021 – New England Sports Village

New Jersey 1 1 5 – 7
Northeast 1 0 0 – 1

1st Period-1, New Jersey, Dumas 3 (Bannister), 8:37. 2, Northeast, Friberg 2 (Schubert, Schroeder), 16:25. Penalties-Luik Njt (slashing-minor), 0:31; Zezima Nte (cross checking-minor), 7:39; McGraw Nte (interference-minor), 13:31; Farrell Njt (tripping-minor), 17:00.

2nd Period-3, New Jersey, Willey 3 (Keresztes, Young), 19:57 (PP). Penalties-Calafiore Njt (holding-minor), 1:49; Schubert Nte (holding-minor), 1:49; Keresztes Njt (checking from behind-minor, unsportsmanlike conduct – 10 minute), 3:50; served by McCarthy Nte (too many men-minor), 5:48; Dumas Njt (roughing-minor), 9:11; Farrell Njt (roughing-double minor), 9:11; Marnauzs Nte (roughing-minor), 9:11; Andreychuk Nte (roughing-minor), 10:25; Bannister Njt (cross checking-minor), 14:15; Boczar Nte (head contact-major, unsportsmanlike conduct-ej), 16:29.

3rd Period-4, New Jersey, Ring 1 (Bannister, Mollica), 0:17 (PP). 5, New Jersey, Calafiore 2 (Bannister, Dumas), 4:33. 6, New Jersey, Keresztes 2 (Posma, Dumas), 13:01 (PP). 7, New Jersey, Ring 2 (Mollica, Posma), 15:32. 8, New Jersey, Avezov 7 (Young, Testa-Basi), 15:44. Penalties-Farrell Njt (cross checking-minor), 5:02; Jennersjö Nte (holding-minor), 12:06; McCarthy Nte (slashing-minor), 15:44; Ardagna Nte (interference-minor), 17:38.

Shots on Goal-New Jersey 13-12-21-46. Northeast 11-11-3-25.
Power Play Opportunities-New Jersey 3 / 8; Northeast 0 / 7.
Goalies-New Jersey, Takacs 4-2-1-0 (25 shots-24 saves). Northeast, DeYoung 2-2-0-0 (46 shots-39 saves).
A-223
Referees-AJ Potvin.
Linesmen-Kieran Green, Anthony Tarquinio.

Saturday

New Jersey Titans 2 at Northeast Generals 3 (OT) – Status: Final OT
Saturday, October 16, 2021 – New England Sports Village

New Jersey 0 1 1 0 – 2
Northeast 1 1 0 1 – 3

1st Period-1, Northeast, Scott 5 (Jennersjö, McCarthy), 15:22 (PP). Penalties-McDougall Njt (interference-minor), 10:17; Farrell Njt (tripping-minor), 13:51; Wites Nte (holding-minor), 16:36.

2nd Period-2, New Jersey, Keresztes 3 (Willey, Posma), 9:57 (PP). 3, Northeast, Jennersjö 1 (Woll, Gordon), 14:49. Penalties-Schroeder Nte (boarding-minor), 8:07; Willey Njt (roughing-minor), 17:49; Schroeder Nte (roughing-minor), 17:49; Grable Njt (hooking-minor), 18:48.

3rd Period-4, New Jersey, Calafiore 3 (Bannister, Dumas), 1:50. Penalties-Schroeder Nte (slashing-minor), 6:08; Minnehan Nte (slashing-minor), 6:20; Corcoran Nte (slashing-minor), 14:05; Andreychuk Nte (cross checking-minor), 15:25.

OT Period-5, Northeast, Keefer 6 (Kolnik, Schroeder), 2:07. Penalties-No Penalties

Shots on Goal-New Jersey 6-14-12-1-33. Northeast 10-12-13-2-37.
Power Play Opportunities-New Jersey 1 / 6; Northeast 1 / 3.
Goalies-New Jersey, Takacs 4-2-1-0 (37 shots-34 saves). Northeast, Baliotti 3-1-0-0 (33 shots-31 saves).
A-270
Referees-AJ Potvin.
Linesmen-David Annecchiarico, Kieran Green.

For the NA3HL team, they came off another sweep of their opponents on the week, having won their last six straight games. The team is consistently near the top or at the top of their division and battling for the Fraser Cup.

Wednesday Box Score

Northeast Generals 4 at Bay State Bobcats 1 – Status: Final
Wednesday, October 13, 2021 – Fitzpatrick Ice Skating Rink

Northeast 1 1 2 – 4
Bay State 1 0 0 – 1

1st Period-1, Northeast, Young 2 (Solokhin, Sinople), 9:07. 2, Bay State, Harwell 1 (Boothe, Anderson), 10:51. Penalties-No Penalties

2nd Period-3, Northeast, Sinople 1 (Solokhin), 17:32 (PP). Penalties-Hess Net (tripping-minor), 5:34; Desmarais Bsb (interference-minor), 7:17; Hess Net (tripping-minor), 10:22; McGrath Bsb (cross checking-major), 14:33; Schirm Bsb (interference-minor), 17:40.

3rd Period-4, Northeast, Lambert 1 (Mulligan, Savoie), 1:14. 5, Northeast, Nuzzolilo 2 (Kennedy, Savoie), 12:31 (SH). Penalties-Savoie Net (high sticking-minor), 2:49; Lemnah Bsb (roughing-minor), 2:51; Schirm Bsb (roughing-minor), 4:56; Lambert Net (cross checking-minor), 11:29; Basarab Bsb (boarding-minor), 15:47; Basarab Bsb (charging-minor), 18:02; Murphy Net (slashing-minor), 18:26.

Shots on Goal-Northeast 19-15-13-47. Bay State 10-11-6-27.
Power Play Opportunities-Northeast 1 / 0; Bay State 0 / 0.
Goalies-Northeast, McCoy 2-0-0-0 (27 shots-26 saves). Bay State, Di Fiore 2-2-0-0 (47 shots-43 saves).
A-192
Referees-Patrick Sharron.
Linesmen-Joshua Berenson, Caley Eaton.

Sunday Box Score

Bay State Bobcats 2 at Northeast Generals 8 – Status: Final
Sunday, October 17, 2021 – New England Sports Village

Bay State 0 2 0 – 2
Northeast 3 1 4 – 8

1st Period-1, Northeast, Hess 4 (Wracker, McNamee), 4:00. 2, Northeast, Felix 2 (Lubin, Gorman), 19:06. 3, Northeast, Kennedy 4 (Murphy, McNamee), 19:42. Penalties-Murphy Net (hooking-minor), 14:54.

2nd Period-4, Bay State, Warren 1 (Basarab, Penning), 2:52. 5, Bay State, Harwell 2 (Boothe, Murray), 7:28. 6, Northeast, Gorman 5 (Mulligan, Felix), 15:17. Penalties-No Penalties

3rd Period-7, Northeast, Gorman 6 (Savoie, Lambert), 8:52. 8, Northeast, Lubin 1 (Frolik, Sinople), 11:37. 9, Northeast, Felix 3 (Lambert, Gorman), 12:11. 10, Northeast, Solokhin 1 (Sinople), 19:22. Penalties-Murray Bsb (roughing-minor), 2:12; Wracker Net (roughing-minor), 2:12; Sinople Net (high sticking-minor), 2:56; Nuzzolilo Net (tripping-minor), 12:40.

Shots on Goal-Bay State 8-17-12-37. Northeast 13-17-23-53.
Power Play Opportunities-Bay State 0 / 3; Northeast 0 / 0.
Goalies-Bay State, Bovey 0-3-0-1 (13 shots-10 saves); Schnopp 1-1-0-0 (40 shots-35 saves). Northeast, Joseph 4-0-0-0 (37 shots-35 saves).
A-100
Referees-Thomas Quick.
Linesmen-Joshua Berenson, Kieran Hurley.

AIC 2, UMASS 4: What comes next?

Photo credit: Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

Assistant Head Coach Cory Schneider was, of course not happy with the final score of the series finale between AIC and UMass. The Yellow Jackets were in a 2-2 tie until the final few minutes when Lucas Mercuri found an open spot in the defense and put home the game winner. The Minutemen would add an empty net marker to provide the final tally.

Despite the sweep, Schneider was upbeat about the future of the team saying, “ I felt that we responded well after last night in a tough environment against the defending national champions… there’s a lot we can build on.”

He noted some standouts that did not score but had a lot to contribute. For instance Schneider said “Chris Dodero had a lot of second and third effort in his game and created a lot of chances.”In addition, he was proud of the game and the start to the season sophomore Julius Janhonen had, saying that “he had a really good summer and put in a lot of work on and off the ice, and it showed when he got here at the end of August. He’s gotten stronger on the puck which has allowed him to possess the puck more and use his creativity and vision.”

Kucharski in net responded to giving up four in the first 10 minutes and made some really big saves against a UMass team that got more grade a looks as the game went on than they did in the series

“There’s still a lot of areas for us to clean up… our players have done a really good job of making improvements.. we will continue to improve.” AIC will keep scheduling tough non conference opponents to get better, and to bolster their resumes going forward. Now they prepare for an always physical Atlantic Hockey series against Army West Point.

Army comes close to earning win over Wisconsin: Now what?

Photo Credit:Ricky Bassman

Last night, the Black Knights were within one shot of leading Wisconsin for the majority of the game. Joey Baez took a nice feed from Marshall Plunkett and walked in to put home his first goal in college hockey and tied things in the second period. From that point on the game between the Black Knights and the Badgers resembled the low scoring, and defensive exhibition we come to expect from teams in the NCAA Tournament. The final score of 4-1 does not reflect the reality of the game which was 2-1 Badgers until they put home the final markers in an empty net to round things out.

The standout last night was Gavin Abric. The Wisconsin native stood on his head throughout the game in a performance remanicient of what Trevin Kozlowski did for Coach Brian Riley’s group the past few years. Abric’s 39 saves kept the team in front of him in the game all night. The second goal he gave up came on a power play where Wisconsin broke down Army’s zone and gave Jack Gorniak too much time and space to put one home in the slot, which he did.

What to watch for

Last night showed how far this team has come since the Providence game. They competed for a full 60 minutes on a nearly Olympic sized sheet of ice against a highly skilled team. As Riley said of the night “we were in position to win the game.” This group had a lot of good going for it last night and has a few things to do in order to change the result of last night.

First , if the Black Knights can win some more faceoffs, that will force Wisconsin to have to defend more than they did last night. When you lose 46 of 69 draws you have to defend a lot , and are often not able to get to your forecheck on a shift. Wisconsin took advantage of that all night to give themselves ample chances.

Second, the Black Knights have to improve in their gaps and possession. Wisconsin drew penalties and scored the game winning goal when they were able to get around the Black Knights. For the result to be different, they have to force the Badgers in to worse areas and be responsible with the puck. If they can minimize cross ice passes and simplify their game then more positive things could happen tonight.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Army West Point prepares for RIT: More From Associate Head Coach Zach McKelvie

Photo Credit:Providence Athletics

This weekend, the Black Knights of Army West Point head home to face an RIT team coming off a non conference loss to Colgate, and looking to make their mark with a top heavy offense and a defense still establishing itself. Hear are Associate Head Coach Zach McKelvie’s thoughts on key issues for the Black Knights heading into their Atlantic Hockey Association opening series.

1. Who are some new faces we will see on the dressed list this weekend?

“Josh Bolin and Hunter McCoy are at forward, no changes on defense just new combos.”

2.What changes as coaches did you all focus on in practice this week?

“Playing to our identity-we need to play our way for 60 plus minutes. Certainly we had to clean up some systems as anyone does early in the season but the bottom line is our effort was there but we weren’t competing to win puck battles.”

3. What has been your biggest point of emphasis on video prepping for the Tigers ?

“RIT is a solid team with a lot of experience returning including their entire senior class from last year returning for a 5th season. They are also very well coached so talked mainly about coming out ready to win each individual battle and make RIT adjust to our game not the other way around.”

4. What’s one thing about Tate Rink you wish more fans knew?

“Tate Rink is an excellent spot to watch a hockey game. The way the seats are lends itself to feeling like you are right in the action…which also makes it very loud.”

5. What is your biggest opportunity for improvement against RIT?

“We are still trying to find our identity as a club so this weekend is really about taking another step as a team and on the individual level learning from last week and finding ways to make a positive impact.”

6. Who is your projected starter in net for the weekend and why?

“We have not named a starter for this weekend but we are confident that all three of our goalies are ready to go. All three are grade A competitors and great human beings, whoever gets the nod will be ready to go as with any of our players.”

As McKelvie said, RIT is a veteran team out to do more than just finish in the top four of Atlantic Hockey this year. This is a group with similarities to Army West Point, and has every intention of using their skill on offense to get ahead and force the Black Knights to catch up. This will be a good early test for the Black Knights this weekend at home, as they play in front of a packed Tate Rink for the first time since the pandemic began.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Takeaways from Army West Point’s 7-0 loss: Read more on what comes next

Photo Credit: Providence College Athletics

Tonight, the Black Knights played the Providence College Friars. A team that came in looking for a replacement for Trevin Kozlowski had Justin Evenson start its opener against a Providence group with eight NHL draft picks, and one set to challenge for a Hockey East Title.

Despite the score, there are some things to take away for Coach Brian Riley from the night. First off, there was a theme to this game, getting players experience, either rookies like Michael Sacco who had not played a game since before the pandemic started (he attended the US Military Academy Prep School last year), or players like his line mates who did not play at all last year.

First, in net, Riley appriciated the effort from Evenson all night. He had to make a lot of saves in the third period, and to his credit, he battled throughout the evening. As Army West Point is looking for a netminder, he added positives to his ledger not for his final accounting of saves, but for how he battled on a night where he faced an inordinate amount of grade-a looks. The staff knows he is a competitor, and Evenson, despite playing different than Kozlowski, has learned a lot from him over their time together about competing as a Division One starter and how to bounce back, traits that will serve him well this season. As Riley said of his night ” I hope this experience will make him a better goalie,” also ” he competed.”

Each of the three periods tonight, Army gave up a goal in the first two minutes. Riley rightly called this a recipe for disaster, and those early goals obscured the effort his team put forward. They all competed throughout the evening, yet any positive progress they made did not show on the score sheet. While there will be things the staff will want to adress, like improving puck side support throughout the night, and limiting high danger chances, the team did compete. Many times Army seemed to be on the cusp of breaking through, but then a post was hit, a shot went wide, or Jaxson Stauber made a wonderful save.

Riley and the staff will be dissecting as much of the game film as they can. In the short term, this group opens their Atlantic Hockey ledger against an offensively strong RIT team next weekend, and the staff will be looking at different options up and down the lineup as needed. In the long run, Riley rightly noted that of tonight ” this is game one”, and this season is, a ” marathon”. That means that Army and all teams will learn from their early season results and you expect more development from everyone in each program, where coaches have routine schedules less variable than they were last year. Many great teams in this sport haven’t truly hit their stride until Christmas. Riley of course wants that to come sooner, but in a loss like this, that is one game in a long year, that sees Army open with a tough October ledger, this fact of development taking time is reality. Riley has said often to his team, being honest as he is that ” winning is hard.” Today proved that.

What comes next against the Tigers is up to the Black Knights, and how the future leaders of American Soldiers handle adversity. Riley often refers to Army West Point Hockey as a leadership lab, and tonight, everyone in that room got dealt their biggest margin of defeat in the program’s time in the past few years at least. Now the college hockey world gets to see this team play in front of its loud fans at Tate Rink for the first time since the pandemic started, next weekend.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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NAHL Northeast Generals Player Profile : Brent Keefer

Photo Credit: Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

For Division One College Hockey teams, they are looking to add more players like 2001 born Generals’ forward Brent Keefer to their group.

Why?

Keefer not only competes hard but also is consistently one of the fastest skaters on the ice and also has an eye for the net. On a few plays this season he has already sped ahead of the opponent and made his own breakaways. So far he has visited at least one Division One school, and has more than a few that are interested in him. His development from the end of last season to where he is now generated interest at the NAHL Showcase, and he is drawing looks from many schools so far. If Keefer contributes to show the speed and eye for the net he has in the first nine games, combined with his hard working personality then he could get even more Division One interest. Like his favorite player, Keefer does not cheat the game, and more schools are realizing that each time they see him play.

Player Profile Questions

Why did you decide to play hockey?
“Because I love the game , and it’s the sport my dad introduced to me.”


What is your favorite food and why?
“Chicken Parmesan and pasta , because I love chicken and pasta.”


What is your favorite thing about the Generals?
“The boys”


Where are you from ?
“Oklahoma”


What is your favorite subject and why?
“History , I like learning about the past.”


Tell us about the type of player you are
“Fast skilled player , I like to use my speed and my hands and vision”


Which NHL player past or present do you model your game after?
“I try to model my game after Matthew Barzal or Connor McDavid.”


What is your best hockey memory?
“Winning a state championship”


What are your goals on and off the ice this year?
“On the ice I want to be a consistent player who is relied upon in every situation and off the ice get stronger.”


What is your favorite tv show or movie to watch?
“Movie Remember the Titans , tv show Criminal Minds”


What is your favorite place to go around the rink in Attleboro?
“Going to eat sushi with the boys”


What is your favorite video game or thing to do in your spare time?
“Playing Warzone”


Who do you look up to most in your life and why?
“Sidney Crosby and because he is a complete hockey player and doesn’t cheat the game.”

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

Your donation will help expand what content we can offer and how many stories we can tell.

Generals earn 4-0 shutout over Jamestown: Read More, and what comes next

Photo Credit: Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

While Generals Head Coach Bryan Erikson is right to divide his team’s season into six ten game segments, the Generals have shown a marked improvement in their first nine games this year, compared to after game nine of last season. Tonight was one of the best games his team played as they earned a 4-0 shutout over the Jamestown Rebels, with Carson Limesand securing his first NAHL shutout, making 25 saves on the evening.

The scoring got off to a strong start in the first, with Paul Minnehan getting the first of his two goals. Joe Schubert got a clean wrister off, similar in form to his goal against Danbury, while Jared Scott also contributed as well. On the goals and compete level of the night, Erikson had this to say ” I thought we did a good job early getting to the net. Creating opportunities. Great to get Minnehan going. And of course great for Schubert to bury that one and Scott to stay hot. Loved the compete especially in the first 20.”

One player that did not score, but has consistently elevated his game is Matt Boczar. In front of dozens of college teams he shined bright tonight, and has played well this year, elevating his game in a bigger role. As Erikson said of Boczar, with the nickname of “Box”, ” Box is the man. He just works and works and works. The buzz on him has been great. And this is a kid that has literally never been given anything. He just competes. Love him as a person and love how he owns mistakes and doesn’t get too high on great plays.”

One other group of standouts that Erikson has hated to keep apart is the line of Joe Schubert, Kyle Schroder, and Landon Kolnik. Tonight Kolnik had two assists and drove his line with his consistent energy. On why the line works together, Erikson was honest about its genesis, and what they bring, saying ” Sometimes you draw something up and it stinks. Other times you draw it up and it just clicks. And those three love each other on the ice and off the ice. 3 amazing kids that all play with such passion, grit and energy. I love that line.” That line will be a big part of the Generals goal to finish their first block of the season with a 7-3 record tomorrow night. Erikson and his staff will work to keep the team in the moment. Even after tomorrow, they will only have a winning record over one of the six ten game segments this season is divided up into. While the start is positive, tonight showed that this team could have a higher ceiling than many would have thought heading into the year.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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AIC Hockey goes “into the deep end of the pool” with exhibition against Boston College: Read More on what to expect

Photo Credit: Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

Last year, AIC ended its season playing a North Dakota team unlike any Head Coach Eric Lang has ever faced. Now he gets to open up the 2021-2022 campaign in exhibition play on the road against a Boston College team, that as Lang does not think he will see anything comparable to all season.

As Lang said of the Eagles “Boston College’s speed and swagger are their best assets. They can make plays from anywhere. I’m not quite sure we will see a team like them at any point in our regular season. It’s great to throw our guys in the deep end of the pool right away.”

Lang will dress five forward lines and eight defenders, and will get as much info on his new players as he can. As Lang said of the evening, and of getting info from it, relative to making lineup decisions, “we have historically leaned on returning players early in the season. They have more credit in the bank. It will be nice to get an evaluation on the young players in an exhibition game.”

AIC will get a unique opportunity in this exhibition, thanks to Boston College’s Legendary Head Coach, Jerry York. As Lang said of getting to prepare with three-on-three overtime and a shootout regardless of score “Jerry called and wants to do a 3 v 3 and a shootout which is a great idea and experience for our kids early on. Ironically in 2 years we have only been involved in one shootout.”

Given how tight Atlantic Hockey is expected to be, as always every point matters, and practicing overtime against the Eagles will help Lang’s group prepare for the early gauntlet of teams they see in Providence, National Champions the University of Massachusetts, oh and their Atlantic Hockey opener against an always tough Army West Point group. This weekend is a chance for Lang and his staff to see their group against another team, it will give new players a chance to earn some credit and some time later on, and it will help the Yellow Jackets prepare for the gauntlet of a schedule they face early on.

Donate: To help us cover more games and tell more stories not found elsewhere about all of college sports, especially under represented athletes everywhere across the college sports landscape like unique untold stories across college hockey. Please click the below link and consider donating what you can. If you do, I will list you in every story about we write as a supporter of crowd-funded journalism that can truly be free for all at this link:paypal.me/Seamorepsorts

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Atlantic Hockey: Three games to watch

Photo Credit :Kelsey Lee-Violet Turtle Photography

Given that, finally, it is a game week for Division One Men’s College Hockey, and given that many teams in Atlantic Hockey have a chance to make their mark this week, let’s look at three games to watch, and what we will be looking at from each Atlantic Hockey team in them.

Army West Point Vs. Providence

The back end of the Black Knights is the most glaring thing to keep an eye on. While the team up front has a preseason Hobey Baker Candidate in Colin Bilek leading them, their defense and goaltending has a lot to be figured out. The team has about two games of experience in net amongst their three netminders. Their rear guard does have some intriguing folks looking for playing time right away. One player that reminds us a bit of recently graduated Firstie, and current Second Lieutenant John Zimmerman, who played a big physical game for Brian Riley’s group for four years is Andrew Gilbert. The 6’5″ defender, like Zimmerman, will step up and look to earn time on the penalty kill pretty quickly. You will not measure his impact on the stat sheet, unless it has blocked shot, hit, and turnover columns in it. The Hitmen were the best team in the NCDC last year and won the Dineen Cup Championship with him at the helm. If he can help the defense, along with players like Hunter McCoy up front (a player Bilek singled out for his strong release) then the Black Knights could be poised to give the Friars more than they bargained for in the early Saturday opener.

AIC vs. Boston College (EXH)

Eric Lang has one of if not the biggest rosters in this sport, and seeing who gets a chance to battle for time against one of the perennial favorites to win Hockey East should be intriguing. Lang will surely want his top returners to get looks, so expect players like Chris Dodero, Chris Theodore, Parker Revering, and Luka Maver to all get some reps. The bigger story for AIC is in their depth. We will be tracking this game to see how Alex Tertyshny does if he gets his shot. Wherever he may see time, should he draw in, he, the many transfers AIC has, and the freshmen brought in will all be under observation by Lang and his staff. He likes playing all four lines pretty equally early on, and there is where players make it hard on him to keep them off the ice. Look at Aaron Grounds last year, the now sophomore competed against a full roster to earn time, and could not be kept out of the lineup after his early season stretch putting up three points in his first four games to compliment the physical nature with which he plays the game.

Oh, and AIC is integrating two Robert Morris transfers including Brian Kramer, who Lang called “the best defender in our league.” How the depth players looking for time like Tertyshny, who can earn looks in the regular season with his early season play, and the new transfers integrate will be the story of this exhibition in setting the stage for the rest of the way for Lang and his group.

Colgate Vs. RIT

The only home game that counts features the Tigers as the home team. The Tigers have Senior Will Calverley leading the way, who is a dark horse pick to take the Atlantic Hockey scoring title from Bilek. He is one of the fastest players in this league who can score in an instant, and like Bilek is not afraid to block shots and lead in the defensive end. Unlike Bilek’s group who is heavy on underclassmen looking to step up and lead sooner, Head Coach Wayne Wilson’s group has ten seniors, with not many question marks in their key positions. The Tigers have the chance to, like Army West Point did last season, utilize their depth and leadership in key positions to spoil the top three of the preseason Atlantic Hockey poll that had them slated to finish fourth. The Tigers have depth and top end skill in all of their groups, and how quickly they put things together will go a long way to determining their fate this season.

The Tigers get to play the Black Knights in the second week of the season, in the Atlantic Hockey Association opening series in two games that could serve as a guide of trends for both teams, after seeing Colgate this weekend.

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