Jan. 31, 2007
GAME DAY QUICK FACTS:
The Teams: Holy Cross (9-14-4, 8-9-4 AHA) vs. Army (12-10-4, 12-7-4 AHA)
Date: February 3
Time: 7:00 p.m.
Place: Tate Rink (2,648), West Point, N.Y.
Holy Cross Radio: WCHC 88.1 FM, Worcester, Mass.
Series Record: Army leads 24-17-4 (Varsity games since 1966)
Last Meeting: Holy Cross 2, Army 2 (12/6/06; West Point, N.Y.)
2006-07 Season Series: Holy Cross leads 2-0-1
SATURDAY NIGHT: The Holy Cross men's hockey team (9-14-4 overall, 8-9-4 Atlantic Hockey) will travel to West Point, N.Y., to take on Army (12-10-4 overall, 12-7-4 Atlantic Hockey), on Saturday, February 3 at 7:00 p.m. The Crusaders are coming off a loss at Quinnipiac last Sunday, while the Black Knights dropped a 3-0 decision to AIC on Tuesday night and are 5-4-1 in their last 10 games. Holy Cross has played 21 Atlantic Hockey games and is in fifth place with 20 points, while Army has played in 23 league contests and is tied for second place with 28 points. Holy Cross leads the season series, 2-0-1, with 4-3 and 5-2 victories on November 17-18 at the Hart Center, and a 2-2 tie at Army on December 6.
THE SERIES WITH ARMY: Saturday night's game will mark the 46th meeting between the Crusaders and the Black Knights since Holy Cross became a varsity program in the 1966-67 season, with Army leading the series, 24-17-4. Holy Cross has a 6-2-2 record in the last 10 games against Army.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN: The Army game is the second contest of a four-game road trip for the Crusaders. After the Army game the Crusaders will play at Canisius on February 9-10. Holy Cross will then return to the Hart Center for a game with Sacred Heart on February 16. The Crusaders are no strangers to road trips as earlier this season Holy Cross played nine consecutive games on the road.
THE BLACK KNIGHTS: Army is led by junior forward Luke Flicek's 11 goals and 15 assists for 26 points. Sophomore defenseman Tim Manthey and junior forward Bryce Hollweg are also having solid seasons as Manthey has five goals and 15 assists for 20 points, while Hollweg has seven goals and 12 assists for 19 points. Army's 2.50 goals allowed per game average is ranked 16th in the nation in scoring defense. Sophomore goaltender Josh Kassel has seen the majority of the time in net for the Black Knights with a 2.31 goals against average and a .916 save percentage in 1430:18 for a 12-9-3 record. His goals against average is ranked first in Atlantic Hockey and 19th in the nation, while his save percentage is third in the conference and 24th in the nation.
STRONG ON THE POWER PLAY: Holy Cross' 20.2 power play percentage is ranked 13th in the nation and second in Atlantic Hockey. 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 19th in the country with six power play goals.
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 74 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 SETS POINTS RECORD: With his goal in the 4-3 win over AIC on January, 20, senior captain James Sixsmith (Alexandria, Va.) now has 144 career points (44 goals and 100 assists) which moves him to first on the Holy Cross all-time Division I career points list. Holy Cross started full Division I competition in the 1998-99 season. He passes current San Jose Shark Patrick Rissmiller (1998-2002) who had 143 points. Sixsmith, who already holds the Division I record for career assists, is also just the fifth Crusader since the start of varsity action (1966-1967 season) to reach 100 assists. Sixsmith recently was named one of 15 semifinalists for the 55th Walter Brown Award presented annually to the best American-born college hockey player in New England. Sixsmith is the fifth Holy Cross player to be named a semifinalist for this award in the program's history, along with Jim Stewart, Patrick Rissmiller, Tony Coskren and Tony Quesada. His 44 goals are seventh on the HC Division I goals list. Sixsmith leads the team in assists (26) and points (39), while he is tied for first in goals (13). His 1.44 points per game are tied for seventh in the nation and second in Atlantic Hockey, while his .96 assists per game are tied for third nationally and first in the conference. Last season, Sixsmith was named the 2006 Atlantic Hockey Tournament MVP for his three goals and five assists in the three games. His 44 goals are seventh on the HC Division I goals list. Sixsmith leads the team in assists (26) and points (39), while he is tied for first in goals (13). His 1.44 points per game are tied for seventh in the nation and second in Atlantic Hockey, while his .96 assists per game are tied for third nationally and first in the conference. Last season, Sixsmith was named the 2006 Atlantic Hockey Tournament MVP for his three goals and five assists in the three games.
REINHARDT ON A ROLL: Junior center Dale Reinhardt (Livingston, N.J.) has 13 goals, 14 assists and 27 points, as he is tied for the team-lead in goals, while he is third in assists and tied for second in points. His three game-winning goals lead the team and are tied for 23rd nationally, while his two shorthanded goals are tied for 13th in the nation. For his career, Reinhardt has 35 goals and 50 assists for 85 points in 95 career games. His 35 goals are tied for ninth on the Holy Cross all-time Division I chart and his 50 points are tied for 10th.
ROOKIE DRISCOLL HAVING SOLID SEASON: Freshman center Ryan Driscoll (Dorchester, Mass.) has six goals and 11 assists for 17 points on the season. Driscoll is tied for fourth on the team in goals, while he is fifth in assists and fourth in points. Driscoll has played in all 27 games and his .63 points per game by a rookie are 41st 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 190-162-35 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. 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 four goals and 10 assists in 51 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.