The RIT hockey season has been a struggle to say the least. RIT lost both games last weekend and now have the first 0-4 start at the Ritter in team history. I actually did not do the research on that fact but research is not needed. The Ritter provides an extreme home ice advantage for a variety of different reasons.
The ice surface is unique at the Ritter. The neutral zone is very small and the ice surface itself is smaller than most college hockey rinks. This creates problems for other teams coming to play at the Ritter. The fan support from the RIT student body and from the Rochester area is tremendous. Most of these games are sell outs and the crowd is a knowledgeable hockey crowd and loud to boot. The fans are into the game and the stands are right on the ice surface. The corner crew and the pep band create an awesome college hockey atmosphere. People love hockey at RIT and the players love to play in this rink, at least I think these players love to play at RIT?
I was at both games this weekend and while Friday night was not a bad game, Saturday night left me something to be desired. Without completely calling out these young student athletes, the lack of effort made me angry. I know it is just a hockey game and I am sure that these guys think that they are trying but they need to want to win way more! I am pretty sure that RIT lost every single one on one battle in the third period. The go ahead goal Saturday night against Canisius was simply one of the Canisius players out working the RIT defenseman, stealing the puck and scoring. Then Canisius got an empty net goal to make the game 5-3. There was still a minute left in the game and RIT pulled the goalie again and it seemed to me like the guys just gave up. As a result, Canisius stole the puck and scored another goal.
I was, to say the least, fuming as I left the Ritter. That is just not how we roll at RIT. If we are going to go down, we are going to fight to the horn. This team does seem to have that never say die attitude that I have come to know here at RIT. We had that attitude when I was here, before I was here, and ever since my days have passed me by. Why does this RIT hockey team seem to not give the effort? The first part of a hockey player’s game to slack when the effort is not there is the defensive play. Well, our defensive play has been terrible. We are losing more one on one battles than we are winning.
I am officially calling this a down year. The RIT hockey team is in trouble folks. Now we have two games at Holy Cross who are first place in the conference this year. Holy Cross does not have a great record against RIT, rarely beating the Tigers. I fear that we are going to see that change this weekend.
LAST WEEK’S PREDICTION RECORD: 0-2 (.000)
THIS WEEK’S PREDICTION:
Holy Cross sweeps RIT
SEASON PREDICTION RECORD: 2-4-1 (.333)