Head Coach Derek Schooley joined us to recap the 3 Rivers Classic and outdoor game.
Following their busiest and most challenging week of the season, 20th-ranked Robert Morris University returns to Atlantic Hockey play this weekend, as a five-game homestand continues. The first-place Colonials welcome Bentley to 84 Lumber Arena for the first time in more than two years, seeking to extend their five-point lead over the third-place Falcons in the league standings.
ABOUT ROBERT MORRIS
– Robert Morris’ final non-conference game of the regular season was Sunday at 84 Lumber Arena, when No. 13 Bowling Green earned a 4-1 victory. The Colonials went 1-2-1 against ranked opponents last week – featuring a win over Penn State on Dec. 29 – and finished 3-2-1 against non-league foes, best in the AHC.
– Sophomore forward Daniel Leavens continues his breakout season, as he was named Atlantic Hockey player of the month for December. He scored nine points (3g, 6a) in six games, tied with teammate Brandon Denham and two others for the national lead in the final month of 2014.
– Senior Scott Jacklin scored 98 seconds into Sunday evening’s game, tying him with Brady Ferguson and David Friedmann for the second-most on the team. With 89 points (42g, 47a) in his career, Jacklin is three shy of Adam Brace (2010-13) for No. 5 on RMU’s all-time scoring list.
– With his assist on Jacklin’s goal, fellow senior Cody Wydo (11g, 15a) crept within five points of Nathan Longpre’s career total of 138, the most in RMU history. For the second consecutive season, Wydo is a candidate for the Hobey Baker Award, given to the player judged to be the best in Division I.
– The Colonials blocked a season-high 29 shots Sunday, boosting their per-game average to 18.45, just behind Harvard (18.46) for the top spot in the nation.
– Entering the Bowling Green series, the Colonials had been 8-0-0 when not allowing a power-play goal. The penalty kill was perfect (7 for 7) vs. the Falcons, even though RMU went 0-1-1 in the home-and-home.
– The third-place Falcons pay their first visit to Pittsburgh since Nov. 2012, when the teams split a two-game series. Bentley, which ended the fall semester on a 3-0-1 run, swept RMU last season in Massachusetts by a combined 11-3 score.
– For the fourth time in two weeks, RMU will face a team that averages three goals per game or more. Bentley scores 3.26 goals per outing, ranking 11th of 59 D-I squads.
– A prolific power play is a major catalyst for the Falcons, as they are No. 1 in the nation with a 30.3 percent conversion rate. 20 of Bentley’s 63 goals have been scored on the advantage; nine Falcons have at least one PPG.
– In addition to being tied for the national scoring lead, Andrew Gladiuk paces Bentley in several ways. Not only does the junior lead the Falcons in goals (14) and points (27), he is tied for most assists (13) and power-play goals (5).
– Bentley is far from a one-man show, however. Sophomore Max French is tied for sixth in the country with 24 points (13g, 11a), while senior defenseman Steve Weinstein has 13 assists, tied for third-most among D-I blueliners.
– 13th-year Bentley head coach Ryan Soderquist has a three-man goaltending carousel working. Senior Blake Dougherty (.915 SV%, 2.49 GAA) and junior Gabe Antoni (.891, 3.40) have made seven starts each, while freshman Jayson Argue has shined in five starts (.937, 1.97).
COLONIALS IN THE MEDIA
Saturday Recap: Colonials battle rain, Bowling Green in historic outdoor game
Sunday Recap: Aggressive Falcons push back on RMU’s home ice
News: Colonials remain in USCHO top 20 after challenging week
Feature: Best of Winterfest – Hockey in the Great Outdoors
Prisuta on Pucks: RMU looks to apply lessons learned during tough stretch
Pittsburgh Sporting News: Colonials start chase for Atlantic Hockey title after busy holiday season
Sentry Media: Powers, Ghantous ditch ties for jerseys vs. Bowling Green
USCHO.com: Colonials project as No. 16 seed in first edition of Bracketology
City of Champions: RMU atop Atlantic Hockey power rankings as new year begins
Kudos from Atlantic Hockey: The Colonials have not only succeeded on a team-wide basis this season, they’ve also earned several individual honors. On top of Wydo and Dalton Izyk each earning Atlantic Hockey monthly awards in October, Leavens won player of the month for December. RMU has claimed nine AHC player of the week honors through the first half. David Friedmann (Offensive Player of the Week), Terry Shafer (Goalie) and Izyk (Goalie) have won two awards each.
#CodyForHobey: Fan voting for the 2015 Hobey Baker Award is open; click here to vote once per day for RMU’s Wydo. After a program-record 31-goal, 54-point junior year, Wydo has paced RMU’s attack once again. The Michigan native, who entered his senior season as the active Division I leader in goals, has 26 points (11g, 15a) in his first 20 games, one behind the national scoring lead.
A Banner Year: The year 2014 saw the Colonials rise from the bottom of the Atlantic Hockey Conference to a league title and NCAA Tournament appearance, followed by a historic start to the 2014-15 season. From January to December, RMU went 29-9-6 for a .727 points percentage. The Colonials were also the highest-scoring program in the nation over that span, netting 172 goals in 44 games for a potent 3.91 goals-per-game average.
by RMU Pr Staff