Jan. 4, 2007
GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (7-10-2, 6-7-2 AHA) vs. Bentley (7-9-1, 6-6-0 AHA)
Dates: January 5-6
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Place: John A. Ryan Arena (1,200), Watertown, Mass.
Holy Cross Radio: WCHC 88.1 FM, Worcester, Mass.
Series Record: Holy Cross leads 20-8-3
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 5, Bentley 2 (3/18/06; Worcester, Mass.)
2005-06 Season Series: Holy Cross won, 5-0
THIS WEEKEND: The Holy Cross men's hockey team (7-10-2 overall, 6-7-2 Atlantic Hockey) will conclude its nine game road trip on Friday and Saturday, January 5-6, when it travels to Watertown, Mass., to take on Atlantic Hockey opponent Bentley (7-9-1 overall, 6-6-0 AHA) for two games at the John A. Ryan Arena in a rematch of last season's Atlantic Hockey Tournament championship game. The Crusaders defeated the Falcons, 5-2, on March 18, 2006 at the Hart Center to win the title. Both games are set to start at 7:00 p.m. Two points separate the two teams, as the Crusaders have played 15 Atlantic Hockey games and are in fifth place with 14 points, while the Falcons have played in 12 conference games and are tied for sixth place with 12 points. Holy Cross has won six straight games versus Bentley, including going 5-0 against the Falcons last season.
THE FALCONS: Bentley has not played since it lost two games at Sacred Heart on December 21-22. The Falcons are led by sophomore Jeff Gumaer's 10 goals and six assists for 16 points, while sophomore Anthony Canzoneri has five goals and nine assists for 14 points and sophomore Tom Dickhudt has six goals and seven assists for 13 points. In net, senior Ray Jean has a 3.41 goals against average and a 7-9-1 record in 985:49. The Falcons have a 4-1 record at home so far this season. Bentley averages 2.6 goals a game, while it has allowed 3.6 goals per game this season.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN: Holy Cross concludes its nine game road trip this weekend with the two games at Bentley. The road trip began on November 24-25 with two games at Mercyhurst, while the Crusaders will play their first game at the Hart Center since a 7-3 win over UConn on November 21, when they host Air Force for two games on January 12-13.
STRONG ON THE POWER PLAY: Holy Cross' 21.9 power play percentage is seventh in the nation and second in Atlantic Hockey. In the last nine games the Crusaders have scored 16 power play goals, while senior defenseman Jon Landry (Lexington, Mass.) is tied for seventh in the nation in power play goals with seven.
SENIOR SALUTE: Holy Cross' five seniors Tanner Fogarty (McMurray, Pa.), Rob Godfrey (Thunder Bay, Ontario), Jon Landry (Lexington, Mass.), Sean Nappo (Northville, Mich.) and captain James Sixsmith (Alexandria, Va.) are one of the most successful classes in the history of Holy Cross men's hockey. They have been a part of 72 wins, two Atlantic Hockey titles, two NCAA Tournaments and one NCAA Tournament victory. The most wins by a class in a four-year period is 82 by last year's graduating seniors.
SIXSMITH SECOND IN THE NATION IN ASSISTS: Senior captain James Sixsmith (Alexandria, Va.) is currently second in the nation in assists per game with 1.11, while he is ninth in points per game with 1.47. He now holds the Holy Cross all-time Division I record for career assists with 95. The record was held by current San Jose Shark Patrick Rissmiller (1998-2002) who had 90 assists during his career. Sixsmith has seven goals and 21 assists for 28 points in 19 games this season, as he now has 38 goals and 133 points in 126 career games. His 95 assists are sixth all-time in the program's history since 1966. Sixsmith's 133 points are fifth all-time in Division I as the record is 143 held by Rissmiller. He is also tied for seventh in goals with 38 on the HC all-time Division I list. Last season, Sixsmith was named the 2006 Atlantic Hockey Tournament MVP for his three goals and five assists in the three games.
LANDRY LEADS DEFENSEMEN IN SCORING: Senior defenseman Jon Landry (Lexington, Mass.) is having a big season so far as his 1.05 points per game by a defenseman are ranked first on the team, second in Atlantic Hockey and third in the nation. He is second on the team in goals (eight) and assists (12), while he is tied for second in points (20). Seven of Landry's eight goals are on the power play as his seven power play goals are tied for seventh in the nation. He has played in 125 career games with 23 goals and 56 assists for 79 points, as his 56 assists are 10th all-time on the Holy Cross Division I list. Last season, Landry had a career season offensively as he was sixth on the team in points with 29, scoring nine goals and adding 20 assists. Landry was also named to the Atlantic Hockey all-conference first team and earned a spot on the NCAA West Regional all-tournament team.
REINHARDT ON A ROLL: Junior center Dale Reinhardt (Livingston, N.J.) has 10 goals, 10 assists and 20 points, as he leads the team in goals and is tied for second in points. He is also tied for third in assists. His three game-winning goals are tied for 10th nationally and his two shorthanded goals are tied for sixth in the nation. For his career, Reinhardt has 32 goals and 46 assists for 78 points in 87 games. His 32 goals are 10th on the Holy Cross all-time Division I chart.
ROOKIE DRISCOLL OFF TO FAST START: Freshman center Ryan Driscoll (Dorchester, Mass.) has five goals and 10 assists for 15 points on the season. He is tied for fifth on the team in goals, tied for third in assists and is fourth in points. Driscoll has played in all 19 games and his .79 points per game by a rookie are third in Atlantic Hockey and are tied for 28th in the country.
LOCKWOOD MAKES DEBUT IN NET: Sophomore goaltender Charlie Lockwood (Breckenridge, Colo.) has started in Holy Cross' last three games as he made his collegiate debut in the 2-2 tie at Army on December 6. He stopped 27 of 29 shots. Lockwood then played in both games at the Toyota UConn Hockey Classic with 26 saves in the UConn game and 25 saves against Northeastern.
HC PICKED THIRD IN PRESEASON POLL: Holy Cross was picked to finish third in the Atlantic Hockey Preseason Coaches Poll. The Crusaders received 83 total points with one first place vote. Mercyhurst was picked as this year's preseason favorite with 96 points and seven first place votes, followed by Sacred Heart with 88 points and two first place votes. Following Holy Cross, Connecticut was picked fourth with 55 points, and Air Force and Bentley tied for fifth with 51 points each. Canisius (45 points), RIT (36 points), Army (32 points) and AIC (13 points) were picked in positions seven through 10 by the league's head coaches.
2005-06 REVIEW: The Crusaders are coming off their most successful season with a school-best 27-10-2 record as they earned their first win in the NCAA Tournament. The 4-3 overtime victory over Minnesota in the NCAA West Regional Semifinals marked the first time that a No. 4 seed defeated a No. 1 seed in NCAA action (since the tournament expanded to 16 teams). The Crusaders also won the Atlantic Hockey regular season and tournament titles for the second time in three years, and were ranked No. 14 in the final USA Today/American Hockey Magazine poll for its highest ever national ranking.
HOLY CROSS HEAD COACH Paul Pearl: Paul Pearl is in his 12th year at the helm of the Holy Cross ice hockey program, and is just the fifth head coach in the history of ice hockey at Holy Cross. On January 21, 2006, with a 3-2 victory at Dartmouth, Pearl became the school's all-time winningest coach with the 168th victory of his career. Pearl has forged a 188-158-33 record at Holy Cross and has been the man behind the bench in seven of the nine most successful seasons in Holy Cross history, while he has had three teams post 20-plus win seasons. Along with 10 post-season appearances in 11 years, Pearl led the Crusaders to their first two NCAA Tournament appearances in 2003-04 and 2005-06, while he coached the Crusaders to their first ever NCAA Tournament win with the 4-3 overtime victory over Minnesota in Grand Forks, N.D., on March 24, 2006. In 2005-06, Pearl led the Crusaders to a school single season record 27 victories, as the team posted an overall record of 27-10-2. Holy Cross also claimed the Atlantic Hockey regular season and tournament titles. As a four-year letterwinner for the Crusaders, he played in 125 games as a defenseman, tallying 14 goals and 63 assists. Pearl led Holy Cross with 25 assists as a senior captain on the 1988-89 squad. During his four-year playing-career, Holy Cross won 63 games and qualified for the ECAC East Tournament twice.
CRUSADERS IN THE PROS: Former Holy Cross hockey player Patrick Rissmiller has been having success in the NHL with the San Jose Sharks. After being recalled from the Cleveland Barons on March 15, 2006, Rissmiller went onto to tally five goals and four assists in 29 games, including two goals and an assist in the playoffs. Rissmiller scored the first goal of the game in San Jose's 5-4 win over Nashville in Game Four of the Western Conference Quarterfinals as the Sharks went onto win the series, 4-1. So far this year he has two goals and eight assists in 40 games. Currently three players from last season's graduating class are on professional rosters. Goalie Tony Quesada is with the Houston Aeros of the AHL which is the affiliate of the NHL's Minnesota Wild, while Tyler McGregor is playing for the Memphis RiverKings of the CHL. Also defenseman Marc Bianchi is playing with the Lubbock Cotton Kings of the CHL.