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RIT Men's Hockey

(January 30 2009) Written by: Matt Garver in Athletics

During this time of year I have a crazy amount of applications to read, spring travel planning, amongst other responsibilities.  However, I always have some time to get everyone up to date on the RIT Men’s Hockey team.  There is quite a bit going on right now, like a seriously long winning streak, two new additions to the Atlantic Hockey Association next year, and Hobey Baker updates.  Let’s get started!

 

I began my blog year in pretty bold fashion; claiming that the hockey team would win at least 20 games and make their first NCAA appearance.  I have to admit, after a 5-9-1 start to the season I was beginning to wonder if I even knew anything about hockey anymore!  Thankfully, I do apparently know what I am talking about when it comes to pucks, skates, and ice.  The RIT Men’s Hockey Team has rattled off 11 straight wins to push their record to 16-9-1.  They are 15-4-1 in league play, putting them on top of the conference, and are ranked 23rd in the nation.  Air Force does have one less loss and two games in hand on the Tigers though.  The good news; Air Force has to come out to the Ritter Arena for the last two conference games of the season.  Another bold prediction, that weekend will decide the conference regular season title.  The Tigers will try to push their win streak to 12 games tonight when they face off against the US Under 18 Team at Blue Cross Arena.

 

In other news, the Atlantic Hockey Association will add two teams to the conference in Niagara University and Robert Morris.  They will be affiliate members next year and will become full time members beginning in the 2010-2011 season.  I think it would be safe to say that we will have quite a rivalry with Niagara considering the proximity of the two schools.  Niagara and Robert Morris are joining the AHA from the 4 team CHA conference.  The WCHA has lifted their moratorium, paving the way for Bemidji State to apply to join the conference.  That leaves Alabama-Huntsville from the CHA without a conference.  They could apply to the WCHA as well, they could dissolve.  At this point I have not heard word on the future of that program. 

 
RIT forward Jesse Newman and defenseman Dan Ringwald are on the fan’s ballot for the 2009 Hobey Baker Award.  The fan vote will account for 1% of the total ballot.  The fan vote will conclude on March 20th; here is the link to place your vote Click here for fan balloting information.  


After losing a Hobey Baker Finalist from last season in Simon Lambert and the teams leading goal scorer in Matt Smith, the team has progressed greatly since early season.  Coach Wayne Wilson has the guys clicking at just the right time, further proving that he has an uncanny ability to put a group of guys together that are going to work as a team, while putting aside personal aspirations for the good of the whole program.  Those folks reading this within the Rochester area; go check out the game tonight, puck drops at 7:05 at the Blue Cross Arena. 

Comments (5)

  • Emily Okey

    Emily Okey

    31 January 2009 at 14:45 |
    Men's hockey lost last night =(
    I'm glad I went though, Blue Cross Arena is awesome (I'd never been there before) and it'll be interesting to see what NHL teams the u18 players end up on.. I read somewhere that one of them is going to be a first draft pick next season?? It's hard to believe that they're all a year or so younger than I am!

    With the additions to the AHA, does this mean the season will be longer?
  • Matthew Garver

    Matthew Garver

    02 February 2009 at 08:17 |
    Hi Emily:

    Unfortuantely I was unable to go to the game, stomach bug had me laid up friday and saturday. From the box score it looks like Coach Wilson played our 3rd goalie. It is an exhibition game, so it was a great time to get him a game in the net. The game does not count against our record either. I am not saying that is why we lost, but I think it certainly played a factor considering they scored 6 goals. The US Under 18 team is littered with top college and NHL prospects. These are the best 17 year old players in the country, so they are very talented. There are all sorts of tryouts for this team that start with state wide tryouts, then regional selections, then national selections. Back when I was playing the NY state tryouts were in Utica, then onto Lake Placid for the regional and if you made it past that it was off to Colorado Springs for the final selection. The final selection consisted of the top 36 forwards in the nation, i do not know the numbers for the other positions, yes I was a forward so that is why I know that piece. But it is something like the top 100 players out in Co. Springs. That is how it went back in 1992. I was fortunate enough to make it out to Colorado Springs, but never made the team. Making it that far was an honor. Anyway, here is a link to the US Under 18 Team roster and where they have committed to play college hockey. Many very storied college hockey programs on the list! http://www.usahockey.com/USANTDP/default.aspx?NAV=AF_01_02&ID=233682. Have a great day! As you can tell I like to talk hockey....
  • Matthew Garver

    Matthew Garver

    02 February 2009 at 08:21 |
    The AHA expansion will not lengthen the season. It will just change the amount of teams we would play four times in a season, I would guess. There are many ways they could adjust the schedule though.
  • Mike Jones

    Mike Jones

    20 November 2009 at 22:48 |
    I live in Pensacola, Florida and was a fan of the Pensacola Ice Pilots while they were in the ECHL. I've been trying to remember the name of the asst coach in the 2000-2001 season but all I remember about him is that he was a coach at RIT before coming to Pensacola. It seems like he brought some players with him and the one I remember is Pat Staerker. Do you have any idea what that coach's name is?
  • Matt Garver

    Matt Garver

    30 November 2009 at 15:06 |
    You even spelled Staerker's name correct. Pat was my linemate here back in 1998-1999. We also won a national championship together during our Bantam Major year with the Buffalo Saints AAA travel team. Starks in still down in FL. working in the restaraunt business with his brother.
    You are referring to Eric Hoffberg, who was our head coach here at RIT. Hoff is in Charlotte, NC doing motivational type things. He was always an incredible motivator and people person, not to mention my mentor through my childhood. You can view his website at http://www.erichoffberg.com/home.html. Go check it out!

    Thank you for making contact with us!

    Best Regards,

    Matt Garver

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