Yale Off Until Jan. 2-3 Tournament
NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- The No. 8/9 Yale men's hockey team (7-3-2, 4-1-2 ECAC), winners of two straight and five of the last six, faces a Bulldog of another color in the opening game of the 2010 Badger Hockey Showdown at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wis., on Jan. 2. The Bulldogs take on the No. 11 Ferris State Bulldogs (13-3-2, 8-2-2 CCHA) at 5 p.m. E.S.T. No video coverage is available but the game can be heard live at http://126.96.36.199/ramgen/broadcast/test.rm. You must have the FREE RealPlayer installed to use this service. You can get a free copy of the RealPlayer software by visiting this link: http://www.real.com/realplayer.html?country=US&language=EN&opage=rpchoice&type=dlrhap_bb&pp=player&src=downloadr,093005rpchoice_1_1_2_1_9_1
3 RANKED TEAMS AT SHOWDOWN
The battle of Bulldogs, ECAC vs CCHA, precedes a Hockey East/WCHA battle of Merrimack-Wisconsin at 8 p.m. E.S.T. The Jan. 2 winners meet in the championship game the next day. The losers play for the consolation on Jan. 3. The host No. 7 Badgers will play the 8 p.m. E.S.T. game on Jan. 3 no matter what it's for.
SERIES VS. TOURNEY TEAMS
Yale and Ferris State skate for the first time. The team from Big Rapids, Mich., is one of two (Lake Superior State) teams from the CCHA that has never skated against the Elis. The Blue is 2-7-1 (1-1-1 in Showdowns) against Wisconsin in a series dating to 1973-74. Yale is 5-3 against Merrimack since the first meeting in 1972-73.
YALE AT SHOWDOWNS
The Bulldogs have participated in three different Badger Hockey Showdowns since the first in 1991 and are 2-3-1 overall with one championship game appearance. Yale has scored 17 goals and given up 24 while playing schools from ECAC Hockey, WCHA, CCHA and Canada in Wisconsin tournaments. Here are Yale's Showdown results.
1991-92 at Milwaukee (Bradley Center)
Dec. 27 Wisconsin 6, Yale 1
Dec. 28 Yale 9, Toronto 2
1998-99 at Milwaukee (Bradley Center)
Dec. 27 Yale 4, Wisconsin 2
Dec. 28 Bowling Green 4, Yale 1
2004-05 at Madison (Kohl Center)
Dec. 31 Yale 1, Wisconsin 1 (OT) - UW advanced in shootout
Jan. 1 Clarkson 8, Yale 1
Team Avg. (National Rank) YALE FERRIS STATE
Scoring 4.33 (1) 3.44 (12)
Defense 2.92 (33) 1.72 (2)
Penalty Kill 76.4 (47) 91.2 (2)
Power Play 20.0 (24) 23.0 (11)
Penalty Minutes 11.3 (50) 21.3 (2)
YALE'S LAST OUTINGS
The Elis grabbed four points with a pair of wins during an important Dec. 4-5 ECAC set at Ingalls Rink. The Blue beat then No. 4 Quinnipiac 7-4 by erasing a one-goal deficit in the third period with four straight goals. Sean Backman and Denny Kearney each had two goals and Jeff Malcolm made 18 saves to earn the win in goal. Yale beat Princeton the following afternoon 4-1 as Chad Ziegler had a goal and an assist and Nick Maricic stopped 33 of 34 shots.
The Bulldogs own the longest (10) unbeaten (8-0-2) streak in the nation after a road sweep of Western Michigan on Dec. 11-12. Ferris State swept Bowling Green and Ohio State on the way to a 10-0 mark in their own building while gaining a pair of ties at No. 1 Miami. Senior F Blair Riley (14-7-21) leads the team in scoring, while sophomore Taylor Nelson (1.73, .937, 9-1-1) is the top man between the pipes.
Wisconsin (10-5-2, 7-4-2 WCHA), coming off a 4-3 win over North Dakota on Dec. 12, also has wins over Minnesota, Michigan State and New Hampshire. Merrimack (7-8-0, 4-6-0 HEA), which owns victories over BC, BU and Vermont, fell 4-1 to UMass on on Dec. 12.
The Elis had 19 goals in the first six games this season but have 32 over the last six.
Yale only scored six goals or more four times in 2008-09. The eight goals against SHU were the most since a 9-1 win over UConn in 2007... Yale's 15 goals between the SHU and Holy Cross games are the most in consecutive games since the 1990-91 Elis scored 16 times at home during weekend wins over Clarkson and St. Lawrence.
Freshman F Andrew Miller (2-11-13), who was 2008-09 USA Jr. Player of the Year, was coached at Cranbrook Kingswood by former Yale player Andy Weidenbach ‘95, an assistant under his father... Yale is 8-0-1 when getting 37 or more shots on goal this season... The Elis average 38 SOG while allowing 28... Nineteen different Bulldogs, including goalie Nick Maricic (2 assists), have a point this season... The Elis have been outscored in the second period but have an advantage on opponents in the first (20-14) and third (20-7) periods... Twelve different players covering all four classes have scored for Yale this season... UVM was the first team to shut out the Elis since Princeton in late February 2009... Eight different Elis have power play goals.
The Blue managed four PPG over the first six games and were operating at just over 11 percent efficiency. The Elis are 11-for-42 (26.1) in the last six and come out of the break with an overall 20.0 mark. Yale's best day on special teams was (4-for-8) at Holy Cross on Nov. 28.
Lots of Little
Junior F Broc Little (15-20-35 last year) leads the Elis with 10 goals. He has a point in all but one game and four multiple-point outings this season. Little's .83 goals per game average is third in Division I, while he has the second best GWG (3) total and is 20th in points per game with 1.25. He led the nation in SHG with five last winter.
O'NEILL ON TOP
Sophomore Brian O'Neill, who has points in eight of 12 games, leads the team lead with 16 points and four PPG. He had 2-1-3 in the win over Sacred Heart on Nov. 24. O'Neill's 1.33 points per game are 15th in Division I. He made the CHN (national) and ECAC Hockey All-Rookie teams after going 12-14-26 last winter.
Junior F Denny Kearney (4-8-12) has a point in nine of 12 games. He is second on the team with eight helpers this season. Kearney, who had two goals in the win over Quinnipiac, is second to Mark Arcobello (53) in active career assists with 44.
Four different Bulldogs have earned a win in net this season. The Elis have two freshmen, a junior and senior battling for the top job. Newcomers Nick Maricic (2.52, .908, 3-1-1) and Jeff Malcolm (2.35, .891, 2-1-0), junior Ryan Rondeau (3.84, .880, 1-1-1) and senior Billy Blase (3 saves, 1-0-0) have been in net. Rondeau has the top save night with 40 at Princeton, while Malcolm gave up the fewest (1) goals in a 1-0 loss at UVM. Maricic, who ranks 27th in GAA among Division I players and is 35th in save percentage, has the most (309) minutes played, Blase the fewest (12).
Backman MOVING UP
F Sean Backman (8-6-14) has 105 points in as many career games and is sixth at Yale with 62 career goals. Backman was named to the College Hockey News (CHN) 2008-09 Pre-Season All-America squad. Backman has a point in nine of 12 outings this winter and is 16th in Division I with .67 goals per game. He was second-team All-ECAC last year after leading his team with 20 goals. Backman tallied the team's lone hat trick of the year in a 5-0 win over Cornell that gave the Blue the ECAC Hockey Tournament Title and made him tournament MVP.
Arcobello Making Point
Senior F Mark Arcobello (3-7-10) was a 2008-09 second-team All-America pick after recording 17-18-35. He has 37 goals and 90 points in three-plus seasons. He is second to Backman among active career leaders in goals and assists.
Senior defenseman Tom Dignard (4-7-11) has 17 career goals, which is fourth on the school charts and a dozen shy of the record set by Dave Baseggio (29-79-108) between 1985-89. Dignard needs five goals to catch Darcy Ryan and Ray Giroux (22) and tie for second. He is seventh among Yale blueliners in career points with 60, seven behind Bill Nichols (67) and three more than Scott Matusovich (57). The current Bulldog ranks No. 2 in the nation among blueliners with 1.22 points per game.
Senior F Mark Arcobello has 109 career games played. Most Eli seniors don't get a glimpse of triple digits until late in their final campaigns. Teammates F Sean Backman (105) and D Ryan Donald (101) recently followed Arcobello. All three could break the record of 125 games shared by Jeff Hamilton ‘01 and Jeff Hristovski ‘06.
Captain Ryan Donald
Ryan Donald (St. Albert, ALB), a class of 2010 defenseman, is the captain of the 2009-10 Bulldogs. The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Bulldog skater is one of 20 NCAA hockey candidates for the 2009-10 Lowe's Senior CLASS Award. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - classroom, character, community and competition. Donald has compiled a 2.93 grade point average as a political science major at one of the nation's top universities. He was recognized as a member of the ECAC All-Academic team in 2009.
CARE TO COMPARE
The 2008-09 Bulldogs enjoyed the best season in the history of Yale hockey after starting 8-4 overall with 35 goals. The current Bulldogs have one more loss and one less victory but have hit the net 52 times. The Elis were 1-0 against nationally ranked teams in the first six last year, they are 3-2 this season including 3-0 vs. Top 5 opponents.
In the Polls
An idle Yale went from 7/8 in the two national polls on Dec. 7 to 8/9 (USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine & uscho.com) on Dec. 14. The No. 6 ranking in uscho.com poll the first week of November was the "highest" Yale has been listed this season. The Elis' best ranking ever was No. 5 in both polls late March of 2009. The Bulldogs are 2-1 against top 15 teams in the current USA Today rankings and 2-1-1 vs. top 20 teams in the uscho.com poll. Yale is 3-2 against ranked teams this season.
On the Bench
Keith Allain ‘80, Yale's Malcolm G. Chace Head Coach of Hockey, has helped establish the Bulldogs on the national scene since he joined the program three years ago. In 2008-09 he led Yale to the best season in the program's history. A school-record 24 wins, Yale's first ECAC Tournament Championship and a school-best No. 5 national ranking in late March backs up that statement. The Elis' second ECAC regular-season title, a third NCAA Tournament appearance and an Ivy League crown confirm the status of the 2008-09 squad. He was honored by ECAC coaches as conference coach of the year (Tim Taylor Award) and College Hockey News named him national coach of the year. This is Allain's 11th overall year at Yale; he spent four as a student-athlete and goalie and three as an assistant coach in the 1980s.
Allain ON SHOWDOWN
"We are excited to be participating in the Badger Showdown with some teams we don't usually see. Ferris State has been impressive this season and will be a tough opponent, especially after a long break from competition. The tournament is a great way for us to start the new year and we look forward to the challenge."
Yale teams had traveled West for regular season games and the NCAA Tournament, but the first Bulldog trip in that direction for a regular-season tournament was the 1969 St. Louis Invitational. The Elis lost to Brown and Michigan that December. Keith Allain never skated for the Blue in Wisconsin, but he did serve as an assistant coach when the Elis split a November weekend set against the Badgers at Madison in 1984.
The senior and junior classes have each contributed 17 goals this season. The sophomores are second with 10 while the newcomers have eight goals and 25 points.
Dedication night for the renovated Ingalls Rink is Jan. 16 when the Yale men host Brown after the women play RPI. That is also alumni day for both squads. The Elis have added 13,000 square feet of varsity operational space. It includes locker rooms, a strength and conditioning center, student-athlete study area, training room, officials room, video room, coaches' offices, equipment room and more. There is a new Schley Room (reception area), historical displays, a concessions stand and bathrooms.
BULLDOGS ON THE AIR
All Yale home games include live video and audio streaming. All games from Ingalls can be seen live through Yale's All Access on yalebulldogs.com. The audio is provided by WYBC radio, and the broadcast can also be heard on either AM 1340 or on wybc.com.
release filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director