By: Perry Laskaris, Athletics Communications Specialist
TROY, N.Y. – The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) men’s hockey captains have been announced and senior Will Reilly (pictured above) will wear the ‘C’ for the Engineers in 2019-20. Aiding him will be classmates Shane Bear and Chase Zieky during home contests and Patrick Polino and TJ Samec on the road. The announcement was made by head coach Dave Smith.
A defenseman from Toronto, Ont., Reilly played in 33 games last season and was third on the team in scoring with five goals and 13 assists for 18 points. Scoring one power play tally, he was second on the Engineers with a -1 rating and was assessed eight minor penalties for 16 minutes. The team-leader power play assists (5) and points (6), he also led RPI in shots (77) and shots per game (2.33).
In 19 ECAC Hockey contests Reilly scored one goal and assisted on eight more for nine points. The former Nanaimo Clippers standout was a -2, with one power play goal and four penalties for eight minutes.
Reilly, who is a draft choice of the Pittsburgh Penguins, has played in 105 career games at RPI, recording 14 goals and 32 assists for 46 points.
A defenseman from Calgary, Alb., Bear played in 18 games during his first season with the Engineers in 2018-19. He registered one goal and one assist for two points and was a -9 with two penalties for four minutes. His lone tally came at Harvard on December 29, helping RPI come back to send the game into overtime.
In three seasons, including time at the University of Massachusetts, Bear has played in 59 games, with four goals and seven assist for 11 points. Formerly of the Brooks Bandits, he notched both his points last season in 12 conference games.
Zieky, a forward out of Avon, Conn., led the Engineers in scoring after joining the team in late December. He racked up eight goals and six assists in just 21 games, compiling a team-best 0.38 goals per game. His .195 shooting percentage was tops in the club, along with his three power play goals.
Through 29 collegiate games between RPI and Providence College, Zieky has eight goals and seven assists for 15 points. The former Salmon Arm Silverback was a -3 for the Engineers in 2018-19 and had one game-winning goal. His season was highlighted by a three-point game at UConn, where he netted two goals and added an assist in a 5-2 victory.
A forward from Buffalo, N.Y., Polino finished seventh on the Engineers in scoring last season, despite missing time due to injury. He played in 24 games, with seven goals and four assists for 11 points, including three power play points (1 goal, 2 assists). Second on the team in shots per game (2.21), he was also third in goals and shooting percentage (.132).
Polino has appeared in 97 games at RPI, scoring 13 goals with 20 assists for 33 points. He registered 11 points (2 goals, 9 assists) as a sophomore and 11 (4 goals, 7 assists) as a freshman.
Samec, a blueliner, from St. Paul, Minn., played in 35 of RPI’s 36 games last season, collecting one goal and four assists for five points. Third in the team with a -2 rating, he was second in blocked shots with 38, including 19 during ECAC Hockey play. All five of points also came during the conference schedule.
In 75 career games at Rensselaer, Samec has two goals and seven assists for nine points.
The Engineers, who defeated Brock University, 6-3, in their exhibition opener last Saturday, begin their regular season schedule this Friday and Saturday, when they travel to No. 4 UMass and OConn, respectively.