Setting the Scene... The Sacred Heart men's ice hockey team welcomes Holy Cross for a weekend showdown at Webster Bank Arena. It is the lone series between the Pioneers & Crusaders this season after a holding pair home-and-home series each of the last two seasons.
Last Time Out... The Pioneers offense came alive in Saturday's 5-1 victory over RIT. After trailing 1-0 after the first period, SHU put together five straight goals. Senior defenseman Erlich Doerksen led the charge with the first multi-goal game of his career. Senior Coltyn Hansen picked up the game winner, intercepting a pass from Gabe Valenzuela for the breakaway goal. Captain Mitch Nylen recorded his second multi-assist game of the season. Sophomore Brett Magnus made 32 stops in goal for the Pioneers
All -Time vs. Holy Cross... The Crusaders lead the all-time series 34-29-3. Holy Cross holds a 6-3-1 advantage over the last 10 meetings.
Last Meeting... Holy Cross came away with a 3-0 victory on February 27, 2016. The Crusaders got on the board early in the second period on a goal by Johnny Coughlin. Michael Laffin and Ryan Ferrill picked up the other two Crusader goals to bring the score to 3-0. Sacred Heart outshot Holy Cross 28 to 24 on the evening but were rendered scoreless by Paul Berrafato, who earned 28 stops in the shutout victory.
Pioneers Killing Penalties Once Again.... After finishing 2015-16, second in Atlantic Hockey in penalty kill percentage at 84.6%. The Pioneers are back at the top of stopping power plays. They currently rank 9th nationally and third in Atlantic Hockey with penalty kill percentage of 86.5% through 22 games.
Doerksen Nets Two from the Back Line... Senior Erlich Doerksen picked up the first multi-goal game of his career in Saturday's 5-1 win over RIT. Doerksen is the first SHU defenseman to score two goals in a game since Mitchell Stretch netted a pair of goals on the same exact day five years ago, January 7, 2011 against Air Force.
Scouting The Crusaders... Holy Cross is riding a three-game win streak into the weekend. The Crusaders are 9-8-3, 6-5-3 in Atlantic Hockey, fresh off a weekend sweep of Niagara. Holy Cross is led by Danny Lopez and T.J. Moore, who rank fourth and sixth in Atlantic Hockey in points. Lopez their leading goal scorer has 12 goals and 10 assists on the year, while Moore has 11 goals and 9 assists. The Crusaders average 10.1 penalty minutes per game which third fewest minutes in the country. Paul Berrafato is the reigning Atlantic Hockey goalie of the week. He owns 2.77 goals against average on the season with two shutouts in goal for Holy Cross.