Men's Ice Hockey to Participate in Connecticut Ice in 2019-20 Season

Men's Ice Hockey to Participate in Connecticut Ice in 2019-20 Season

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BRIDGEPORT, Conn.- SNY announced the creating of a first-of-its-kind weekend hockey festival, Connecticut Ice, that will feature Sacred Heart University men's hockey in the first-ever tournament of Connecticut's four NCAA Division I men's collegiate hockey teams. The three-day festival celebrating youth and amateur hockey in the State of Connecticut will take place Friday, January 24 through Sunday, January 26, 2020 at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, CT.

The Pioneers will play square-off with Quinnipiac University, University of Connecticut and Yale University in a two-round, four-game tournament. All four games of tournament will be broadcast live on SNY. 

"Connecticut is a state rich in sporting tradition and an event that features the high-level of collegiate hockey is a long time in coming," said SHU Executive Director of Athletics' Bobby Valentine. "I want to thank SNY, our partner Webster Bank Arena and our hockey brethren in working together to make this event possible."

"We are thrilled to be playing in the inaugural CT Ice event," said Pioneers head coach CJ Marottolo. "The sky is the limit for the excitement that this event can bring to Connecticut, for sport fans." 

The multi-day festival will include a Mites Cross Ice Jamboree for 6-8-year old's, a Youth Tournament of which the Championship games in three divisions (Boys 12U and 10U and Girls 12U) will take place on the Webster Bank Arena ice, and High School and Prep School Rivalry Games. The festival will also include on-ice clinics and off-ice seminars for youth players and their families in conjunction with USA Hockey.

"We are very pleased to announce Connecticut Ice and to bring this festival to the City of Bridgeport," said Steve Raab, President, SNY. "Connecticut's love for hockey is tremendous and the opportunity for it to be a catalyst for us to make a major, positive impact in the state is exciting.  This annual festival would not be possible without the enthusiastic support already pledged by virtually every part of the state's hockey community."  

Tickets for the inaugural Connecticut Ice Festival are on sale now via SNY.tv/CTice. The games will be included as an option for SHU men's ice hockey season tickets. Fans interested in reserving season tickets can call or email the Pioneers ticket office at 203-396-TIXX.

The Pioneers finished the 2018-19 campaign with 16 wins, including a 7-1-1 run in the month of February that catapulted SHU to a fourth-place finish in the AHA. The Sacred Heart University Men's Ice Hockey team had an impressive season as the Pioneers had a month of February that was one to remember as they went 7-1-1 for the month which was the best month the Pioneers have had this year. 

First-year Austin Magera was named to the Atlantic Hockey Third-Team All-Conference, as well as the Atlantic Hockey All-Rookie after leading SHU in goals with 14 and in points with 27. First-year goalie Josh Benson also had an impressive season, earning Atlantic Hockey All-Rookie Team as he tallied a GAA of 2.54 which ranked second in Atlantic Hockey. Benson also led the league in win percentage as he went 13-8-2 on the year for a .636-win percentage.

The Pioneers have had a total of 80 of alumni who have pursued professional careers in hockey after graduating from SHU. Most recently alumni Nathan Perry signed a contract with South Carolina Stingrays of the ECHL.