Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Celebrating youth hockey

Something special for this season is the addition of youth hockey players to the opening ceremonies at each home game. Here are the details...

Hutchins is Brockport's Athlete of the Week

Connor Hutchins is Brockport's Male Athlete of the Week for October 30th. He led the Green and Gold offensively over the weekend as they finished with a record of 2-0, beating both King’s College and Neumann University. He led the way in scoring with three goals while dishing out two assists, and a game-winning goal. Hutchins best game came in the season opener against King's College where he finished with two goals, with one being the game-winner, and an assist.

Hutchins is SUNYAC Player of the Week

The College at Brockport ice hockey team tabbed their first State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) player of the week, with Connor Hutchins winning the honors.

Hutchins led the Green and Gold offensively over the weekend as they finished with a record of 2-0, beating both King's College and Neumann University. He led the way in scoring with three goals while dishing out two assists, and a game-winning goal. Hutchins best game came in the season opener against King's College where he finished with two goals, with one being the game-winner, and an assist.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Tyler Williams back in action

Freshman defenseman Tyler Williams was awarded the hard hat after Saturday's game. It was his first game back in action in almost a year following injury in the juniors. His final season with the Junior Flyers was cut so short that he played in just 20 games. It's good to see him back at the top of his game!

Brockport beats Neumann on Senior Night

The College at Brockport moved to 2-0 on the season Saturday night with a convincing 4-1 victory over the Neumann University Knights. The nine senior members of the ice hockey program were honored before the game for the hard work and dedication to Brockport hockey.

Danny Rock got the scoring started for the Green and Gold at the 03:58 mark of the first period, putting the team up 1-0. After a Dylan Shapiro shot went off the goaltenders pad, Rock was right there in front of the net to bury the rebound.

The Knights has some chances to even the score with a pair of power plays, but came up short as goaltender Matt Schneider saved all seven of the shots he faced in the stanza.

Both defenses clamped down for the majority of the second period, until the Golden Eagles notched another goal, this one coming on the power play from senior Aidan Verbeke. After receiving outlet passes from Rock and Casey Winn, the captain skated the puck around the net and snuck a wraparound chance past the Neumann goaltender to put Brockport up 2-0.

Connor Hutchins got into the action early in the third period with a goal assisted by Verbeke and Brandon McMartin, and added an assist on the final Golden Eagle tally. After receiving a pass near the faceoff circle, Hutchins slid a beautiful backhand touch pass through the crease and right to the stick of Zac Sikich who was there to send it past the goalie.

Joe Mitchell notched a goal for the Knights with less than three minutes to go, but it was to no avail as the Golden Eagles were able to hang on for the 4-1 victory.

Verbeke led the offensive charge with a goal and a pair of apples, while Hutchins (2), Rock (2), Sikich (1), Winn (1), and Shapiro (1) all recorded points as well.

Schneider kept the Knights off the board for the first 57:00 minutes of play, allowing the Golden Eagles to open up the big lead. The sophomore ended the game with 21 saves on 22 shots for a 95.5 save percentage.

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Brockport beats King's College

Freshman blueliner Casey Winn got the hard hat for his 3 assists

The College at Brockport ice hockey team blew past King's College in their season opener Friday evening winning by a score of 6-2. The Golden Eagles move to 1-0 on the 2017 season, where the Monarchs drop to 0-1.

"It was a successful first win for our team," head coach Brian Dickinson noted. "It gave was a great starting point for us to build on for a positive season ahead of us."

The Green and Gold wasted no time in the first period as Connor Hutchins notched the first goal of the game with the assists from Aidan Verbeke and Casey Winn. The offense kept rolling when David Horan added another goal in the 14th minute with the assists from Doc Gentzler and Winn. Hutchins was not done yet, as he doubled his goals in in the 17th minute, connecting on a pass from Winn and Connar Bass to extend the Golden Eagles lead to 3-0 heading into the second period.

Freshman Danny Rock started the scoring two minutes into the second period on a power play opportunity, to take a 4-0 advantage.  Brockport's lead was cut after a King's goal midway through the period. Both teams battled it out but neither teams could convert any more goals in as they headed into the third period.

Brockport started the third in complete control of the game, possessing the puck in the offensive zone.

"We fore checked well, back checked well, and gave constant pressure to the other team so that they never had any good opportunities to score," Dickinson stated.

Ryan Romeo was the first Golden Eagle to tally a goal in the third period with the assists from Zac Sikich and Brian Hurlimann. The Green and Gold pulled out of reach after a late goal from Ethan Solat on the power play, as he beat the Monarch goalie on a quick shot with the pass from Hutchins. King's added a goal in the last minute but it was not enough as Brockport won the game by a final score of 6-2.

The Golden Eagles played well on both ends of the ice as they converted two out of five power play chances, while stopping the Monarchs on all three of theirs.

Hutchins lead the way with two goals and one assists for the Green and Gold, where three different players scored their first collegiate goals tonight's, Rock, Romeo, and Solat. Winn paced the offense as he handed out three assists tonight.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Brockport's strength of schedule

D3hockey.com has issued it's preseason poll for the entirety of DIII:


Brockport didn't place in the top 15, but 3 of our conference foes did -- Oswego in 7th place, Geneseo in 10th, and Plattsburgh at 12th.

That's six games against top teams.

It's never easy in the SUNYAC, but the Golden Eagles are up for the challenge this year.

Athletics Department's season preview video

USCHO looks at the season that will be in SUNYAC

The folks at USCHO have shared their season preview for the SUNYAC. They have Brockport as the sleeper pick in the conference based on experience and depth. Check it out here:


Hockey players read to children

Last night, Bryan Carville, Matt Schneider, and Dylan Shapiro represented the hockey team during storytime at Hamlin Public Library. They were a hit with the kids! 

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Brockport to face King's and Neumann this weekend

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.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Athletics Department's season preview

After a tough season ending loss last year in the first round of the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) playoffs, The College at Brockport ice hockey team will look to make a new stride in the 2017-2018 season and bring home a SUNYAC Championship.

Last season the Golden Eagles finish 11-14-1 and 7-9 in conference, which included an 8-4 win over Plattsburgh State who was ranked No. 15 in the country at the time.

The Green and Gold were tabbed fourth in the SUNYAC preseason poll earlier last week.

"We feel we are a top four program in our league," head coach Brian Dickinson stated. "We need to have an attitude that every game is a must win so that we don't get complacent and overlook anyone. Our league is competitive from top to bottom and if we don't come to play on any given night you run the risk of losing."

Brockport graduated two key seniors last season that will be tough to replace.

"Robbie Hall was our team's seventh player award winner last year for the player who played above all expectations, and a leader in the locker room," Dickinson noted. "We are looking at Brian Hurlimann, Connar Bass and Bryan Carville to step into the minutes Robbie lost. Jake Taylor had an outstanding year and was voted the team Most Valuable Player (MVP). Although that's a tough task to fill, we feel that we have a number of guys who have the ability to score the goals we lost with Jake."

The Brockport ice hockey program have eight seniors this year that will be looked at to lead the team this season. On the offensive side captain Aidan Verbeke, assistant captain Dylan Shapiro, Zac Sikich, David Horan, Matt Meredith, Ryan Kangas, and two defensemen, Hurlimann, and Brandon McMartin.

"We are senior heavy with a lot of returning parts to a team that finished the season on a sour note," Dickinson said. "We are excited into get back to the daily competition in practice, in hopes of challenging for a SUNYAC title at the end of the season."

Other top returners for the Golden Eagles on offense are former SUNYAC rookie of the year Tim Kielich, assistant captain and last year's leading scorer Connor Hutchins, and junior defensive men Bass. Both goal keepers Matt Schneider and Jake Moore will return in between the pipes for the Green and Gold.

The ice hockey team brings in eight newcomers to the program that will look to make an immediate impact on the ice, forwards Ethan Solat, Jeremy Solat, Danny Rock, Shane Visnick, Ryan Romeo, defensemen, Tyler Williams, Casey Winn, and goalie Sean Lincoln.

"The freshman class is deep with eight newcomers and many of them should expect to see significant time," Dickinson noted. "Ethan and Jeremy Solat, along with Rock and Visnick bring leadership and an offensive upside from their junior careers, where Romeo is an offensive defenseman who has the ability to create offense. Williams and Winn are good sized defensive men who will be looked to provide solid team defense."

2017-2018 team photo

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Senior Night is this weekend

It has almost always been the case that Senior Night at any level of sport -- high school, college -- was held on the last home game of the season. The hockey team is trying something new this year....Senior Night will take place at Saturday's home opener.

It’s a non-league game which allows the team to do a more elaborate pregame ceremony with the players/parents on the ice rather than wait until after the game (when casual fans are exiting) which the team has had to do at the end of the year as SUNYAC rules state that there are no pregame ceremonies before conference games game in order to keep everything on schedule.

Also, the home opener draws the biggest crowd of the year which will be great for the seniors.

I like Coach Dickinson's thinking -- let's celebrate the seniors this weekend!

Home games to be broadcast on TV

RSN, the ROC Sports Network, will broadcast Brockport's home games over the air on digital channel 46.5 in the Rochester area. Those games will also be streamed at http://www.rocsportsnetwork.com/. Behind the mics will be Matt Winthrop and Matt Stathopoulos. Those Brockport alumni know their Brockport hockey -- both were play-by-play men for WBSU 89.1 FM a few years ago.

Friday, October 20, 2017

The Twenty-Five Year Team: First Team picks

This season marks my twenty-fifth following the team.

Because of that 25 year appreciation for this great sport and great college, I often get asked: “who are some of the best players you’ve ever seen?”

That’s a tough one.

Over that quarter century I’ve seen some pretty remarkable players take the ice. As a matter of fact, each one is remarkable in his own way – in a brotherhood like hockey, everyone contributes something some way, somehow. That’s what makes it the ultimate team sport.

But, there are some guys who stood out and provided an extra level of excitement, some guys who will one day adorn the Brockport Athletics Hall of Fame.

Below is my First Team. I will announce the Second Team in the coming days.  

Some of the gents played the whole four seasons. Some may have spent just one with the Golden Eagles. Others might have had just one breakout year. Anyway you put it, they left a lasting impression on this fan, the team, and the Brockport community.


Forward: James Cody (2008-2009 through 2011-2012). James was, in my opinion and likely that of many others, the most exciting player to ever have laced up his skates at Tuttle North. And, for sure, we will never see anyone like him again. The man could score, ranking sixth all-time at Brockport with 116 points thanks to a 60-56-116 line. Every season he exceeded 24 points. He could do that with speed and unmatched physicality and strength. Those assets also made him the most feared hitter ever at Brockport as he leveled many, many opponents with open ice hits and checks (you will never see that again in the modern or future NCAA). He was the program’s first-ever All-American and the SUNYAC Player of the Year when he had a 19-15-34 line. He was a pure athlete who could have excelled in any sport he wanted to focus on. Thank God he chose hockey. 

James Cody destroyed Postdam in 2 playoff games, just as he did every team he faced

Forward: Dave McNab (2006-2007 through 2008-2009). Dave spent two-a-half seasons with Brockport after having started his career at Plattsburgh. He took advantage of his playing time and become captain as a senior. It is that final season that puts him on the all-time team. He was the ultimate team captain. Sure, Brockport has had many fine ones, but he took it to another level: If opponents tangled with our goalies he would obliterate (or choke) them, he was in constant professional discussion with the refs, and he inspired the team to become physical like no other. That season and the season that followed were the most physical of all our teams (and likely the last due to newer NCAA rules) and they truly intimidated opponents. It was old time hockey at its finest. But, don’t let that tough exterior fool you – Dave is a nice guy and a skilled player. In that captaincy he had 26 points and 11 goals courtesy of a wicked slapshot that was expertly played out in power play situations.

Forward: Bobby Garrison (1996-1997 to 1999-2000): The numbers tell the story. Bobby is the all-time leader in points (156), goals (72), assists (84) and power play goals (26). He was 175 pounds of bottled lightning – fast and elusive with unparalleled vision. He was a human highlight reel which makes it too bad that he played just a few years before the internet, smartphones, and modern videography came to be. He was SUNYAC Rookie of the Year and a two-time member of All-SUNYAC Squads. If Brockport wasn’t coming out of its lean years during his reign of terror on opposing defenses, he likely would have received more accolades and All-American consideration. To put his greatness into context consider this: Fans of recent years are familiar with Chase Nieuwendyk’s absolutely brilliant career and his 101 point career total. Garrison’s output was 56% higher. It’s almost unfathomable to think about that. 

Defenseman: Chris Luker (2012-2013 through 2015-2016): During the last 3 years of his Brockport career I gave the young man plenty of coverage on the hockey blog. Why? He was that good. He was an excellent rangy defenseman who became Brockport’s only 3-time All-SUNYAC honoree. He has what is the most magical offensive output of any Golden Eagle blueliner. He had seasons of 22, 23, and 17 points – output you would expect from a first or second line forward, not a defenseman. He was a joy to watch, not only for his firepower but his consistency…he rarely had cold patches or hot hands – he wasn’t streaky at all; every game was a consistently excellent as the previous. That’s what you want from a d-man.

Defenseman: Mike Gershon (2005-2006 through 2008-2009): Mike was the lead blueliner on my favorite squad (the 2008-2009 team, which I will discuss in a future post). Hard hitting. Focused. Brilliant. Those words define his junior and senior years, which is why he was All-SUNYAC in his last year. That season, he also did the unprecedented: When did you ever hear of a defenseman having a hat trick? The senior year 8-9-17 stat line with 57 penalty minutes shows the explosiveness (skill-wise and physically) he brought to the ice. He would absolutely punish opponents in the corners. His hitting was textbook, too – I imagine every time he laid into someone he thought of himself going through them.   

Todd Sheridan beat cancer and became the greatest goalie in Brockport history

Goalie: Todd Sheridan (2006-2007 through 2009-2010): Todd is without a doubt the greatest goalie in Brockport history and some could argue its greatest player, too, if not it’s most important. Every major career goaltending record belongs to him: Goals against average (3.07), save percentage (.904), wins (29) and shutouts (5). He gave the team confidence to do anything they wanted offensively in front of him, because he had the attitude and performance (from textbook saves to Hasek-like freakish plays) to stymie the toughest of opponents and get into their heads. He was transformative, too, being instrumental in helping the College’s program develop a high-profile name for itself (which aided in recruiting, filling the stands and maintaining greatness). It’s not a coincidence that so many excellent goalies – and playoff years-- have come after his successful run. He paved the way. On top of that, as a player, the cancer survivor initiated the Saves For a Cure charity that gave tens of thousands of dollars to local cancer clinics for children.