It was a great start to 2008 for RIT athletics, with big wins against good competition.
The men’s hockey squad (9-7-3, 7-4-3 AHA) began 2008 on a positive note, sweeping Holy Cross on Friday and Saturday to climb over .500 and move into second place in the conference standings. It was perhaps, RIT’s best play of the season to date. The Tigers scored three goals in a little over a minute on Friday and dominated the Crusaders on Saturday.
RIT made its big push towards the Atlantic Hockey regular season title a year ago with a 7-2 mark in January. Hopefully, the Tigers can duplicate that feat this January. The men are off to a 2-0 mark this month.
It is a big weekend for the Tigers as they make their way up the conference standings. Second-place RIT travels to Colorado Springs to play Air Force, who is the first place team in Atlantic Hockey. RIT is just two points behind the Falcons, with two games in hand.
The two teams have already seen each other twice this season, splitting a pair of games at the Ritter Arena on Nov. 9-10 (Air Force won 2-1 in OT on Friday, Nov. 9, and RIT won 4-3 on Saturday, Nov. 10). Both squads are very evenly matched, as they met four times last season (RIT won season series 2-1-1) and four times in 2005-06 (Air Force won season series 2-1-1. RIT leads the all-time series, 7-6-2 and is 4-4-2 against the Falcons since moving to Division I in 2005.
RIT’s men’s basketball team (6-5, 2-3 Empire 8) scored a huge win on Friday, getting great contributions from its youngsters to defeat then #13 Stevens Institute of Technology. The Ducks were undefeated. It is RIT’s first win over a ranked opponent in nearly three years.
RIT is the #6 seed in the 2008 J.P. Morgan Chase Scholarship Tournament. The Tigers will play #3 Nazareth College in first round action at St. John Fisher on Wednesday evening at 6:15 p.m. The championship rounds are at the University of Rochester.
It is the second meeting between the two schools this season. Nazareth defeated the Tigers 95-82 in overtime at the Clark Gym on Dec. 4. Before that, the Tigers had won 12 straight against the Golden Flyers dating back to the 2002-03 season.
Women’s hockey dropped to #6 in the nation, . The Tigers (9-4) are six games into a brutally tough eight-game that had them face #5 Elmira College (went 1-1), Division I Robert Morris (two, one goal losses), #3 Middlebury (3-0 loss) and #7 Amherst College (3-1 win) and finish with #1 and defending national champion Plattsburgh on January 19 and 20. It is unquestionably the toughest eight-game stretch the Tigers have ever seen and quite possibly the toughest road any Division III team will endure this season.
The wrestling team traveled to the New York/Pennsylvania dual meet at Lycoming College. The Tigers lost both dual meets, but had some good individual performances.
RIT is the #5 seed in the 2008 J.P. Morgan Chase Scholarship Tournament. The Tigers will play #4 Roberts Wesleyan in first round action at SUNY Geneseo on Tuesday evening at 6:15 p.m. The #5 seed is the second highest for the Tigers in their tournament history. Last season, RIT was the #4 seed.
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