The Golden Eagles begin the second semester of play Thursday night at 7:00, a short drive away in Geneva. They’ll take on perennial powerhouse Hobart, a team that looks nothing like the well-oiled machine that it once was.
Rated fifth in the USCHO.com poll coming into the season, they aren’t even ranked after posting a shocking losing record of 5-6-2. This uncharacteristic performance is based on a significant change in style. Once a team built on speed and puck control, they’ve grown (literally and figuratively) into a physical team that is not as fast as the teams of old. That has accounted for a scoring average a third-of- a-goal less per game than last year and a defense that is allowing three-quarters-of-a-goal more per game. In a sport as low-scoring as hockey, that’s a huge difference. Hobart scores an average of 3.77 goals/game while allowing 3.
They do, though, still possess a great power play, rated 17th in the nation. Matt Wallace, a junior, is lights-out in those situations, lighting the lamp 6 times this season on the man advantage. Their penalty is not so good, placing them 53rd in the nation. If Brockport can unleash the power play system used in the Skidmore Tourney, look out!
Hobart’s best players are rookie Chris Cannizarro (a team-high 16 points), Wallace (14 points) , freshman Danny Organ (7 goals), and defenseman Brad Richards whose 11 points are 14th best in the nation among defenders. Nick Broadwater is none too shabby in goal with a robust .909 saves percentage.
When last they played in November Hobart beat Brockport 4-1. But, this time things will be different. Hobart’s play has slackened and if Brockport can come out of the gate with physical play, the Golden Eagles can beat them. In the last match-up, physicality paid off…after figuring out that’s what was needed, Brockport held Hobart to only one goal after the first 4 minutes of the second. At that time, James Cody and Tyler Davis took it upon themselves to lay a whuppin’ on the Statesmen and it worked. If that’s done by all from the first second of the game, a Golden Eagle victory is assured.
Catch the game’s broadcast live online at www.891thepoint.com