FAIRFIELD, Conn.- The Sacred Heart University Men's Ice Hockey team hits the road to take on #10 Penn State for a two game set beginning on Friday at 7:00 p.m. at Pegula Ice Arena.
Last Time Out... The Pioneers rallied from a goal down to UCONN late in the third period as junior forward Matt Tugnutt tallied the game tying goal with 0:03 seconds remaining in the third period to send the game into overtime where the team drew to a 3-3 tie. Tugnutt had a remarkable day tallying all three goals for the Pioneers as it was a back and forth game as SHU tallied the opening goal in the first period while UCONN answered back with two in second followed by the Tugnutt thriller in the third. Sophomore goalie Josh Benson recorded 17 saves on the day on 20 shots faced. Senior Jason Cotton tallied three saves in the Pioneer tie with the Huskies as well.
Last Meeting... We have to blow off some dust off the scoresheets for the last time the Pioneers faced Penn State dating back to 2015 when the Pioneers were edged by the Nittany Lions 3-2 as a late third period goal by Penn State would propell the team to a 3-2 victory over SHU on the Nittany Lions home ice. Zach Luczyk and Alec Butcher each tallied goals for the Pioneers in the loss. Goalie Brett Magnus recorded 64 saves on 67 shots faced in the game.
Scouting The Nittany Lions... Penn State concluded the 2018-19 season with a 22-15-2 overall record while going 11-12-1 in Big 10 play. The team was edged 3-2 in the Big 10 Championship as they fell to Notre Dame. They return the team's best goal scorer from a year ago, Alex Limoges who tallied 23 goals with 27 assists for 50 points. The Nittany Lions return goalie Peyton Jones who played and started in 32 games last season and tallied a GAA of 3.32 with a save percentage of .901 with a record of 18-12-2.
Tugnutt Named Atlantic Hockey Player of the Week... Junior forward Matt Tugnutt was tabbed Atlantic Hockey Player of the Week as announced by the league on Tuesday. Tugnutt tallied his first career hat trick as SHU rallied to tie UConn last Saturday night. Tugnutt tallied goals in both the first and second periods, giving the Pioneers 1-0 and 2-1 leads in the contest. SHU trailed 3-2 late in the third period, but Tugnutt came through for the Pioneers, completing his hat trick with 3.0 seconds left in regulation to force overtime and to lead the Pioneers to a 3-3 draw with the Huskies. He currently has three goals for three points on the season.
Men's Hockey Inks Top Recruit, Zakarai, At Team IMPACT Signing Day... The Sacred Heart University men's ice hockey team officially inked its top recruit, Zakarai Schneider, of the 2019-20 season, at a press conference at Webster Bank Arena. Zakarai joins the Pioneers from Team IMPACT the Boston-headquartered national nonprofit. "Zakarai is such an amazing kid," said Pioneers head coach CJ Marotollo. "The determination that he shows and the smile he has every time he steps foot on the ice brings great energy and will lift our spirit up as a team this season." After signing his letter, Zakarai dressed in the team locker room and took the ice with the Pioneers for practice. The 16-year old was diagnosed with a neurological disorder at birth. He will join the Pioneers for team-building events, meals, games and other activities. The 16-year old was diagnosed with a neurological disorder at birth. Team IMPACT is a national nonprofit headquartered in Boston, MA that connects children facing serious or chronic illnesses with college athletic teams, forming lifelong bonds and life-changing outcomes.
SNY Announces Matchups For Inaugural Connecticut Ice Festival... SNY announced the collegiate matchups for the inaugural Connecticut Ice Festival, a first-of-its-kind weekend hockey festival, celebrating youth, amateur and collegiate hockey in the state of Connecticut. Anchoring the weekend will be the first-ever tournament of Connecticut's four NCAA Division I Men's Collegiate hockey teams -Quinnipiac University, Sacred Heart University, University of Connecticut and Yale University. They will square off in a two-round, four game tournament on Saturday, January 25 and Sunday, January 26, 2020 at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, CT. SHU will face Yale in the opening round on January, 25, 2020 at 7:30 p.m.