Men’s hockey looks to maintain first place on the road this weekend
Tigers visit West Point for games against Army Feb. 20–21
Feb. 17, 2009
by Joe Venniro
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The RIT Tigers men’s hockey team looks to maintain its lead in the Atlantic Hockey Association as it travels to West Point, N.Y., to play the Army Black Knights at 7:05 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Feb. 20–21. It will be the third and fourth meetings of the season between the two schools.
RIT (19-10-1, 18-5-1 AHA) is on a roll, having won three straight games, including a sweep at Holy Cross last weekend. Junior goaltender Jared DeMichiel recorded his first collegiate shutout and six different Tigers scored in a 6-0 win on Feb. 13. The following night, RIT scored three power-play goals en route to a 3-1 win. Alan Mazur had a power-play goal in each game.
Brennan Sarazin leads RIT with 15 goals and 29 points in 30 games. He has 16 points over his last 10 games. Freshman Cameron Burt recorded four points in the two games last weekend and has nine points over his last five contests.
The Tigers have scored 23 power-play goals in their past 12 games and are 23 for 75 (30.6 percent) during that span. The power play is now fourth in the nation. RIT is third nationally in goal scoring, averaging 3.83 goals per game. Eight players have at least 20 points.
Army (10-16-4, 9-11-4 Atlantic Hockey) is riding a four-game unbeaten streak (3-0-1). The Black Knights swept a series from Sacred Heart last weekend, winning 4-3 and 3-1. Jay Clark stopped 59 shots in the two wins. Owen Meyer leads Army with 15 goals and 29 points in 24 games this season. Cody Omilusik and Eric Sefchik each have 25 points. Clark has assumed the starting role and is 8-6-4 with a 2.93 goals against average and .915 save percentage.
The all-time series between the two schools is knotted at 2-2-2. Earlier this season, the teams split a weekend series at RIT. Army scored three third-period goals to snap a 2-2 tie and defeat RIT 5-3 on Nov. 14. The following night, the Tigers returned the favor, scoring three times in the final period to break a 3-3 tie and win 6-3. Last season, the two teams skated to back-to-back ties, 2-2 and 1-1 at Ritter Arena.
The Tigers can clinch a top-two finish with a sweep this weekend. RIT is guaranteed a top-four finish in the Atlantic Hockey Association standings.