One would think that a long-established hockey program would have their way with a brand new program in its first year, especially early in the season. That may not be the case Tuesday when Brockport hosts Nazareth at 7:00 at Tuttle North Ice Arena.
If there's anything that can be taken from Naz's recent 2-game set with Geneseo, it's that they won't be pushovers.
On Thursday night Nazareth beat Geneseo (picked to finish 3rd in the competitive SUNYAC), 3-2 in overtime. Junior defenseman Reed Smith scored the game-winning goal with 1:26 left in the extra stanza. Another defenseman -- Jordan Ciccarello -- shined on the night as was named the second star after scoring the Golden Flyers' first two goals. The first star went to freshman goalie Ed Zdolshek, who stopped 50 shots.
Them, on Saturday, Nazareth lost 2-1, but hung with Geneseo must of the night, not allowing Geneseo's second goal until 12:08 of the third.
Those are exceptional performances by any standard at it may be a reflection of their accomplished coach -- George Roll...as well as their on-ice leaders: Even though they had just a few days under his watch prior to the game (per-NCAA rules), they had 20 captains practices heading into last Monday.
They do have some talent. The Rochester Democrat and Chronicle says this:
The Flyers’ top player might be junior forward Mark Zavorin of Moscow,
Russia. The 6-foot-2, 210-pounder transferred from County College of
Mercer, where he twice earned National Junior College Athletic
Association All-America honors. He was the NJCAA’s leading scorer the
past two seasons, with 83 points in 2010-11 and 92 last year. He scored
The article also said this....
One of the more intriguing players is junior defenseman Jordan
Ciccarello of New Hartford, Conn. He transferred from Division I Sacred
Heart to play for the fledgling Golden Flyers and is now a team captain.
So, Brockport will have their hands full tomorrow. Nazareth tested (and even bested) Geneseo, so they will put up a fight for the equally game Golden Eagles.
Should be a great game for a season opener, and a great preparation for the upcoming SUNYAC games.