The 2017-2018 seasons begins this weekend with two non-conference games.
On Friday, the team heads to King’s College for their first-ever non-exhibition game.
The new program will feature some familiar names.
First and foremost is their head coach, Stephen Mallaro who has spent two seasons as Brockport’s assistant. Facing his old team is such a nice way to start off his head coaching career.
Three of his Brockport recruits moved to the team with him. Jamie Lukas is a junior forward who saw action in 22 games last year and had 1 assist. Nick Gullo is also a junior forward. He saw action in 21 games over his two seasons at Brockport and picked up two assists. The third former Golden Eagle is Nicholas Palumbo, a junior defenseman who had a standout freshman season that placed him on USCHO’s SUNYAC All-Rookie team.
Longtime pro hockey fans will also recognize a last name. One of the Monarch’s goalies is Jacob Tugnutt, the son of former NHL goalie Ron Tugnutt who once stopped 70 shots in a regular season games and had one of the finest seasons of the modern era, posting a 1.79 goals against average and a .925 save percentage in 1998-1999.
On Saturday, the Golden Eagles will hold Senior Night ceremonies before hosting the Neumann Knights, who made it to the second round of the ECAC tournament in February.
They are a changed team – they lost an astounding 16 players to graduation, including 11 of their top 13 scorers.
The pressure will really be on Neumann senior Liam Board who had 10 goals and 24 assists last year. No other player who remains from last year’s roster scored more than 4 goals, so he will have his work cut out for him.
Neumann’s savior will likely be the man making the saves. Sophomore Anthony Pupplo had a spectacular rookie campaign with an amazing .941 save percentage and a 2.02 goals against average. Pupplo will steal a few games and give much-needed confidence to a young, developing team.