Jan. 18, 2007
GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (8-12-4, 7-8-4 AHA) vs. AIC (3-17-0, 3-14-0 AHA)
Dates: January 19-20
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Place: Hart Center (1,600), Worcester, Mass.
Holy Cross Radio: WCHC 88.1 FM, Worcester, Mass.
Series Record: Holy Cross leads 31-15-6
Last Meeting: HC 3, AIC 1 (3/11/06; Worcester, Mass.)
2005-06 Season Series: Holy Cross won 4-0-1
THIS WEEKEND: The Holy Cross men's hockey team (8-12-4 overall, 7-8-4 Atlantic Hockey) will host Atlantic Hockey opponent American International (3-17-0 overall, 3-14-0 AHA) at the Hart Center on Friday and Saturday, January 19-20. Both games are set to start at 7:00 p.m. The Crusaders are coming off a 4-0 loss at Dartmouth, while the Yellow Jackets are 3-5-0 in their last eight games and are coming off a weekend split with Bentley. Holy Cross has played 19 Atlantic Hockey games and are in fifth place with 18 points, while AIC has played in 17 conference games and are in 10th place with six points. This is a rematch of last year's Atlantic Hockey Tournament quarterfinals as the Crusaders won by a score of 3-1 at the Hart Center on March 11, 2006.
THE SERIES WITH AIC: This weekend's games will mark the 53rd and 54th meetings between the two schools. Holy Cross leads the all-time series, 31-15-6, and have a 15-3-2 record against the Yellow Jackets in the last 20 games. Holy Cross took last season's series with a 4-0-1 record, while the Crusaders are 14-6-4 versus the Yellow Jackets in the Hart Center.
HOME SWEET HOME: Holy Cross is in a midst of playing four out of five games at the Hart Center. After this weekend the Crusaders will play four straight games on the road before returning to the Hart Center a little less than a month later for a game with Sacred Heart on February 16. Before this current homestand the Crusaders played nine consecutive games on the road. Holy Cross is 6-2-2 at home this season and 281-162-24 all-time at the Hart Center.
STRONG ON THE POWER PLAY: Holy Cross' 21.3 power play percentage is ranked eighth in the nation and second in Atlantic Hockey. In the last 14 games the Crusaders have scored 22 power play goals. Senior defenseman Jon Landry (Lexington, Mass.) is tied for 13th in the nation in power play goals with seven, while junior Dale Reinhardt (Livingston, N.J.) is tied for 17th in the country with six power play goals.
THE YELLOW JACKETS: AIC is led by junior Jereme Tendler's 10 goals and eight assists for 18 points. Senior Jeremy Leroux and junior Bryan Jurynec are also having solid seasons as they each have two goals and eight assists for 10 points. Sophomore goalie Tom Fenton has a 4.08 goals against average in 632:42, while sophomore Coby Robinson has a 3.91 goals against average in 476:03. The Yellow Jackets split a home-and-home series with Bentley last weekend as they won 6-1 at home and lost 5-3 on the road.
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 73 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 APPROACHING POINTS RECORD: Senior captain James Sixsmith (Alexandria, Va.) now has 141 career points with 43 goals and 98 assists as he is second on the Holy Cross all-time Division I points list. The record is 143 set by current San Jose Shark Patrick Rissmiller (1998-2002). Sixsmith holds the Holy Cross all-time Division I record for career assists with 98. The record was held by Rissmiller who had 90 assists during his career. His 98 assists are tied for fifth all-time in the program's history since 1966. He is also seventh in goals with 43 on the HC all-time Division I list. Sixsmith leads the team in assists (24) and points (36), while he is tied for first in goals (12). His 1.50 points per game are tied for fourth in the nation and his 1.00 assists per game are tied for second nationally. Sixsmith had two goals and an assist in the two games with Air Force. On Friday night he scored a shorthanded goal to cut the Falcons' lead to 2-1 and then he assisted on the game-tying goal. On Saturday, he scored his second shorthanded goal of the weekend when he tied the game at 2-2. 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 1.08 points per game by a defenseman are first in Atlantic Hockey and second in the nation. Landry is third on the team in goals (nine), while he is second in assists (17) and points (26). Seven of Landry's nine goals are on the power play as his seven power play goals are tied for 13th in the nation. He has played in 130 career games with 24 goals and 61 assists for 85 points, as his 61 assists are ninth all-time on the Holy Cross Division I list and his 85 points are tied for 10th.
REINHARDT ON A ROLL: Junior center Dale Reinhardt (Livingston, N.J.) has 12 goals, 13 assists and 25 points, as he is tied for the team-lead in goals, while he is third in assists and points. His three game-winning goals are tied for 15th nationally and his two shorthanded goals are tied for eighth in the nation. For his career, Reinhardt has 34 goals and 49 assists for 83 points in 92 games. His 34 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 11 assists for 16 points on the season. Driscoll is tied for fifth on the team in goals, while he is fourth in assists and points. Driscoll has played in all 24 games and his .67 points per game by a rookie are tied for 34th in the country.
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 189-160-35 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.
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 three goals and 10 assists in 46 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.