Bulldogs On North Country Trip This Week

Nick Jaskowiak. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Nick Jaskowiak. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Yale Faces Clarkson, SLU

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. - The Yale men's hockey team, which began the stretch run of the ECAC Hockey campaign by splitting a home set last weekend, heads to the North Country this week. The Bulldogs (8-6-1, 5-3-0) go to Potsdam on Friday night at 7 to play Clarkson (9-10-4, 3-4-2) at Cheel Arena. The Elis finish the weekend in Canton against St. Lawrence (8-11-2, 4-5-0) at Appleton Arena in another 7 p.m. puck drop.

The Elis have played Clarkson 104 times since 1929-30 and the Knights own a 68-32-4 lead. Yale has taken the last four meetings. Kenny Agostino's goal with 11:16 left in the third broke open a 2-2 game and sent Yale to a 5-2 win last January at Ingalls. Brian O'Neill had a hat trick at Potsdam last February in a 6-3 Yale win.

Yale and St. Lawrence split the last two regular-season series and are 3-3-1 over the last seven. Overall, the Blue has a 5-4-1 lead over the last two years including a 3-game playoff series at New Haven last March. The Saints have a 55-28-8 overall lead and a 7-6-2 advantage on Yale in ECAC playoff games, though the Elis are 5-3-2 in quarterfinal series.

Six different Elis hit the net while Brian O'Neill (Yardley, Pa.) and Andrew Miller (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) each had three points in Yale's 6-2 win over Princeton last Saturday at the Whale. Jeff Malcolm (Lethbridge, Alb.) stopped 23 of 25 shots and three of four man-advantages to earn the win between the pipes.

Eric Hartzell stopped 24 of 25 shots to lead his Quinnipiac squad to a 2-1 win over Yale in the battle of New Haven County's two Division I teams before a sold out Ingalls Rink last Friday. Both teams put 25 shots on goal and both went 1-for-3 with the man advantage, while Quinnipiac snapped a two-game winless streak in a very hard-hitting contest. Brian O'Neill had the Yale tally, while Jeff Malcolm stopped 23 shots.

Clarkson, which has lost four straight against some tough teams since beating SLU on Dec. 6, has nine goals from senior F and Boston Bruins' draft pick Nick Tremblay.

SLU is 3-1-2 over its last six games, is coming off a non-league home split against Minnesota State. The Saints are led offensively by junior F Kyle Flanagan (10-12-22).
Yale ranks 5th in scoring offense (3.53) and 28th in defense (2.73). The Bulldog penalty-kill is second (91.8), while only two teams have been penalized less (10.3) than the Bulldogs. The Elis' power play unit is second (28.8) and trails only Harvard (34.9). In the polls, this is the first week since mid January of 2009 that Yale has not been on the uscho.com Division I Top 20 list. Yale received 33 votes for this week. The Blue did not receive any votes in the USA Today/American Hockey Magazine Poll.

Yale (10 points) is fifth in ECAC Hockey just two points ahead of both Clarkson and St. Lawrence. Three points separate the first and fifth place squads, while all but one team is within six points of the current leader.

Junior Jeff Malcolm has started every game this season and has all eight wins. He had a shutout streak of three (Colgate, RPI, Union) games and 226:39 minutes (parts of 5 games) in November and was named ECAC Hockey Goalie of the Week after stopping all 72 shots in wins at No. 8 Union and RPI on Nov. 11-12. The three straight SHOs tied the school record set by Ryan Rondeau '11 last winter. His scoreless streak fell short of the 240:53 by Rondeau. His career record is 14-10-1 with a 2.79 GAA and three shutouts. Malcolm has a 2.47 GAA (32nd in Division I) with a .921 SP (22nd) this year.

Junior F Andrew Miller (84 gp, 20-75-95) is one of college hockey's premier  offensive catalysts. Miller, not known for his goal scoring, leads the team with 13 helpers and is 9th on the school's career list. He is best at creating space, setting up teammates and winning draws. Miller, a 2010-11 first-team All-ECAC pick, was voted "best passer" by his teammates the last two seasons while he had 12-33-45 in 2010-11. He was No. 4 in the nation with .97 assists per game (tops in ECAC). More impressive is that 22 of his 33 assists were primary ones. His team-high 33 helpers (2nd best at Yale and five behind Mark Kaufmann '93) were a sophomore school record while 45 points were second on the team. He probably had his best offensive weekend as a collegian on Feb. 25-26 when he hit the net three times against Colgate/Cornell combined. Miller (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), was 12th in the nation with 1.29 points per contest and registered the most (34 as a freshman) points by a Yale rookie since Tom Walsh set the bar with 41 in 1984-85. The speedy forward was the 2008-09 USA Junior Player of the Year and 2007 Michigan High School Mr. Hockey. In 2009-10 he was second among conference rookies with one point per game, which also put him fourth in the country for newcomers. He ranked eighth in Division I that year with .85 assists per outing.

Yale's captain, Brian O'Neill (118 gp, 59-77-136), leads the squad with 11 goals and 19 points. He is seventh on Yale's career points list and is 11th on the career goals list (2nd among active ECAC players). He was a 2010-11 first-team All-ECAC selection and has led the team in scoring the last two seasons. O'Neill had a career-high four goals (most by a Bulldog since 2003) this year against Bentley. His four tallies against the Falcons on Jan. 1, 2012, were on consecutive scores. That eclipsed his hat trick at Clarkson on Feb. 12, 2011. He ranked 15th nationally with 1.29 points per game last year. He began 2010-11 with a 3-2-5 weekend in the two wins including 2-1-3 and the GWG against Dartmouth on Oct. 30. The year before, he led the Elis with 29 assists and 45 points while ranking seventh in the country with 1.32 PPG. O'Neill (Yardley, Pa.) made the 2008-09 CHN and ECAC Hockey All-Rookie teams after going 12-14-26.

Junior Nick Maricic (Alta Loma, Calif.) saw his first action of the year at SHU (2 saves, 24 minutes) but has not made a start this season. Maricic owns a 2.89 career GAA and an .885 SP. Freshman Connor Wilson (Cary, NC) is looking for his first opportunity. He stopped 11 of 12 shots in one period of work against the exhibition against the Russian Red Stars on Dec. 28.

There are seven defensemen on the Yale roster: two seniors, a junior, a sophomore and three freshmen. They have combined to score six goals while allowing 41 in 15 games. Two of the newcomers, Tommy Fallen (Plymouth, Minn.) and Matt Killian (Basking Ridge, NJ) scored goals against SHU. Three of the seven have a depth of experience. Seniors Kevin Peel (Onoway, Alb.) and Nick Jaskowiak (Bloomington, Minn.) have been regulars since arriving in New Haven. Junior Colin Dueck (Calgary, Alb.) became a mainstay last winter and sophomore Gus Young (Dedham, Mass.) has seen action in every game this season.   

Yale sophomore forward Kenny Agostino (Flanders, NJ), who came within a step of making the U.S. National Junior Team this winter, has six goals and 14 points this season in 13 games. Agostino, who missed the last three games before the break with an injury, has 2-2-4 in his last three games. His best game this year was 2-2-4 vs. UConn. Agostino became the first Yale newcomer in 30 years to record five points in one game on Jan. 2, 2011. He notched three goals and two assists against Holy Cross and became the school's first freshman to tally five points since former Olympian and NHL star Bob Brooke '83 established the school rookie record against Dartmouth in 1980. Yale's rookie of the year last winter after scoring 11 goals and 25 points, Agostino was the HCA National Rookie of the Month for January (8-4-12), the first Bulldog to receive that award. He was ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Week on Jan. 23 (3 goals vs. Clarkson/SLU), becoming the only Bulldog to earn conference rookie honors in 2010-11. The former Delbarton School star had a goal and three assists before the holiday break, and 10 goals and 11 assists after. He ranked 11th nationally among rookies with .86 points per game.
Senior Dan Otto (Lake Zurich, Ill.) missed the last four games with an injury... The Brockett brothers played against each other last Saturday at Ingalls. Charles, the senior forward for Yale, was playing against Tucker, a freshman Tiger forward... The 49 shots on goal against Princeton alst week tied for the second most by the Blue this year. The Elis had 53 against Sacred Heart and 49 against UConn… Yale's lineup was the same both nights last weekend… The Bulldogs came out of the locker room last Saturday after the game wearing their jerseys to sign posters for more than 400 kids as part of Yale Hockey Youth Day.

Assistant coach Dan Muse is in his third season season under Keith Allain. He joined the Bulldog staff when C.J. Marottolo left to take the top job at Sacred Heart. Former University of New Hampshire star Eric Lind has been with Allain every season at Yale. There is one new face on the Yale bench this season, Dennis "Red" Gendron, who replaced Kyle Wallack as the Bulldogs' associate head coach. Gendron, an assistant at the University of Massachusetts the last six seasons and a former University of Maine coach from 1990 to 1993, helped the Black Bears win a 1993 NCAA Championship.

The two ECAC teams from the Capitol District, Union and RPI, head to New Haven next weekend for a pair of 7 p.m. games.

The current Yale roster is comprised of leaders and scholars. Here are some examples.

22  were captains of hockey teams before coming to New Haven
13 captained another sports team
17 won a scholar-athlete award
14 graduated in top 10 percent of their senior class

The Yale players were surveyed about each other, and here are the results:

Best Passer:              Andrew Miller (Jr, F)
Fastest on Skates:         Brian O'Neill (Sr, F)
Hardest Shot:             Antoine Laganiere (Jr, F)
Best Forechecker:         Chad Ziegler (Sr, F)
Strongest:             Josh Balch (Jr, F)
Most Likely to become a coach: Josh Balch  
Best Singer:             Colin Dueck (Jr, D)
Most Unique Hobby:         Brian O'Neill (model airplanes)
Best Sense of Humor:         Charles Brockett (Sr, F)
Biggest Appetite:         Charles Brockett
Best Dresser:             Andrew Miller
Want your sister to date:     Anthony Day (Fr, F)
The Yale roster includes players from 13 different states and three provinces. New York and Minnesota are represented by three players from each state while Alberta brings in four players.

The United States Hockey League contributed 10 players to the Bulldog roster. There are four from the British Columbia Hockey League, one from the Atlantic Junior Hockey League and another from the Eastern Junior Hockey League. Ten Yale student-athletes came directly from prep schools.

There are 23 former Yale hockey players skating professionally, including eight from the class of 2011. Here are the Bulldog pros, youngest to oldest:

Chris Cahill '11 (Cincinnati Cyclones, ECHL)
Denny Kearney '11 (Trenton Titans, ECHL)
Broc Little '11 (HockeyAllsvenskan, VIK Västerås HK, Sweden)
Jimmy Martin '11 (Florida Everblades, ECHL)
Brendon Mason '11 (Nybro Vikings, Sweden)
Mike Matczak '11 (Kalamazoo Wings, ECHL)
Ryan Rondeau '11 (Laredo Buck, CHL)
Ken Trentowski '11 (Brooklyn Aviators, FHL)
Sean Backman '10 (Bridgeport Sound Tigers, AHL)
Ryan Donald '10 (Florida Everblades, ECHL)
Mark Arcobello '10 (Oklahoma City Barons, AHL)
Billy Blase '10 (Neuilly-sur-Marne, France)
Tom Dignard (Belfast Giants, EIHL)
Alec Richards '09 (Rockford Icehogs, AHL)
Brennan Turner '09 (Dundee Stars, EIHL)
David Meckler '09 (Manchester Monarchs, AHL)
Blair Yaworski '08 (Utah Grizzlies, ECHL)
Jean-Francois Boucher (Saint-George COOL-FM, LNAH)
Matt Cohen '07 (Fife Flyers, EIHL)
Brad Mills '07 (New Jersey Devils, NHL)
Chris Higgins '05 (Vancouver Canucks, NHL)
Joe Callahan '05 (Hamilton Bulldogs, AHL)
Ray Giroux '98 (ChelyabinskTraktor, KL)

Three players on the current Yale roster have been drafted by NHL teams: Gus Young (Colorado, 7th, 184, 2009); Kenny Agostino (Pittsburgh, 5th, 140, 2010); Brad Peltz (Ottawa, 7th, 190, 2009).

It's not fair to compare recent Yale teams to the 2011-12 Bulldogs, who lost nine standout class of 2011 players. Eight of the graduates are skating professionally. The current squad isn't lacking talent, but nobody re-loads with equal force after losing nine seniors from a championship team. There are seven seniors seeing regular duty, though one of them seeks his first varsity letter. Four of the five sophomores and five of the six juniors have been in almost every game while five freshmen have been needed to fill the largest void.

Pay-per-view broadcasts of Yale hockey regular season home games are available on yalebulldogs.com. The Yale Athletic Department production is almost entirely student run: Sam Dorward '13 is the producer; Tom Stokes  '12 and Patrick Ouziel '13 are the cameramen; Evan Ellis '12, the Voice of Yale Hockey, and Max Valenstein '13 are the broadcasters.

Yale and Fairfield hosted the 2009 and 2011 NCAA East Regional Tournaments in Bridgeport at Webster Bank's Arena at Harbor Yard, and the Bulldogs participated in both. The 2012 East Regional is slated for the Yard, which has hosted numerous NCAA events.
Yale hockey celebrated the re-dedication of Ingalls Rink (3,500 capacity) on Jan. 16, 2010. The rink built in 1958 has been modernized  while adding 13,000 square feet of operational space. The additions include locker rooms and space for strength & conditioning (including skating treadmill), student-athlete study area, medical & training, officials, video, coaches, equipment, reception and more. There are new historical displays, concession stands and bathrooms for the building nicknamed the "Whale" because of its humpback-shaped roof.

The Whale (Ingalls Rink) has been a tough place for visitors in recent years. Yale, which enjoyed its first undefeated (15-0-1, only Division I team to do that) regular season at Ingalls last winter, finished 17-1-1 at home (2-2 this year). That is the most wins ever in New Haven for a Yale team (The Blue went unbeaten at New Haven in 1928-29). The Bulldogs are 42-11-3 over the last three-plus seasons at the Whale and 12-10-3 in home ECAC playoff games all time.

Ingalls Rink was sold out for the last 12 games of the 2010-11 regular season and five (Cornell, Colgate, BC, QU, PU) times this year. There are tickets available for the rest of the home campaign, but only G.A. and S.R.O. tickets remain for contests with Harvard and Dartmouth.

Here are some important things to know if you are covering the Bulldogs or just working a game at Ingalls. Interviews: Yale head coach Keith Allain and select players are available on a semi-regular basis each week at Ingalls Rink, typically Thursdays at 2:30 p.m. If you would like to attend these informal media sessions, please contact Sports Publicity Director Steve Conn. Post-game:interviews with Yale personnel are conducted in one of the youth locker rooms at ice level on the home side of the building. Let Steve Conn know who you would like to speak with immediately after the game. Media Gate List: Attendants stationed at the front and back of the rink have a media gate list to check off your name. Parking: The same list is used for PARKING in the garage (entrance off Prospect Street) behind the rink.


filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director