By Warren Kozireski–
The Raiders took higher seed Clarkson to the brink before falling in the ECAC quarterfinals in three games to end their season.
Sophomore goaltender Colton Point tied the program record for shutouts in a single season with his sixth of the year in the first round of the ECC playoffs against RPI. Point tied the record held by Mark Dekanich ’08 in 2007-08 and Charlie Finn ’17 in 2014-15.
The team will lose five seniors including both backup goaltenders and forwards Mike Panowyck and Evan Petersen, who played 151 and 137 career games respectively. Panowyck finished with 22 career goals and 57 points.
The team clinched sole possession of the Cleary Cup for the first time since 2005 and their ninth title overall. The Big Red swept Quinnipiac in the quarterfinals to advance to the final four for the second year in a row. Their semi-final is against Princeton.
Freshman Matthew Galajda was named the ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Year. The national leader in goals against average (1.43) and shutouts (nine), his numbers within ECAC Hockey play this year were even better. His 1.34 goals against average in league play was the lowest since Cornell’s own David McKee in 2004-05 (1.17). It’s also the lowest goals against average by a freshman in league play since those statistics became available in the 1978-79 season.
Junior Alec McCrea was named the ECAC Hockey Best Defensive Defenseman—the first Cornellian to win the award since Justin Krueger did so after his senior season in 2010. McCrea is part of a defense corps that was ranked first in the country with a paltry 1.52 goals against average and accumulated a plus-20 rating that ranked tied for seventh in the nation.
Junior forward Anthony Angello (Manlius) notched his first collegiate hat trick Jan. 26 against Harvard. Freshman defenseman Matt Cairns scored his first collegiate goal Feb. 24 versus Union. Defenseman Cody Haiskanen’s first collegiate goal came Feb. 23 at RPI.
The Red Dragons earned points in five of their final seven regular season games, but fell two points shy of a playoff berth.
Five seniors completed their careers including Dan Broderick (White Plains) and Tommy Nolan (Mahopac), who played in 94 and 96 career games respectively while scoring 83 and 53 career points.
The Soaring Eagles had their first winning season in the last four and won two one-goal road playoff games before falling in the UCHC title tilt at Utica.
Not only were their zero seniors on the roster, but their top six point-getters were underclassmen and both primary goaltenders were freshmen.
Earning points in their final seven regular season games to earn home ice as the Continentals could not return to the NCAA for a second straight year after a one-goal loss on home ice in the conference quarterfinals.
Five seniors played their final collegiate games including Neil Conway, who finished with 86 points in 101 career contests.
The Statesmen parlayed their second place regular season finish into the NEHC championship in their first year in the conference with a 3-0 win at Norwich in the title game and earn the auto-bid to the NCAA tournament. But they lost to Geneseo in the first round ending their season.
Six seniors completed their eligibility including goaltender Frank Oplinger, who finished with a 2.13 goals against average—second in program history, 44 career wins—third, seven career shutouts—also third, fourth in saves (1717) and third in save percentage (.927).
The Mustangs scored just eight times while allowing 28 over their final six games and finished with only three league victories.
Senior forwards Nick Russo (Sayville) and John Lauer (Camilus) are among four departing seniors. Lauer netted 21 points over 83 career games while Russo had one assists over 30 games—ten in this his senior season.
The Lakers picked the worst time of year to go into an offensive funk scoring just one in the final three contests—all on home ice—as their season ended in the SUNYAC semi-finals. They did not receive an at-large bid to the NCAA’s despite their 18-6-2 overall record.
Senior forward Mitch Herlihey was named the Herb Hammond Player of the Year and senior Devin Campbell Defensive Player of the Year in SUNYAC.
Forwards Josh Zizek and Herlihey were named to the All-SUNYAC first team, making it two-consecutive years that Oswego has had a pair of forwards named to the All-Conference First Team. Goaltender David Richer was named to the second team, while forward Michael Gillespie (new City) and defenseman Max Novick were named to the third team.
Canton native Trent Durocher was among four seniors honored at the end of the year. The Potsdam transfer had six points in 40 career games in the green and gold.
The Pioneers won both the first United Collegiate Hockey Conference regular season and playoff titles, but were not offered an at-large bid to the NCAA in spite of their 21-5-1 overall record and losing only three times during the second half.
Queensbury’s Kevin Valenti is among a large senior class of nine that includes the team’s top three scorers this past season. Valenti scored 27 goals with 82 points in 108 career games.
OTHER AREA NEWS:
- Syracuse native and Buffalo Jr. Sabres Luke Tuch committed to Boston University.