Monday, December 10, 2012

Super Sweet Weekend

Wow I was hoping against hope that RPI went 1-0-1 this weekend but to do so by beating UP on Yale and then tying with Brown, I would've never guessed that is how it would play out.

I mean, what an amazing game Friday night. I watched it via the live Yale feed and RPI was quick. They were beating Yale to most of the pucks, had good movement out of the defensive zone and the frosh goalie made the saves he was called upon to make. You watch something like the Yale game and you get pumped for what this team might be able to do during the second half of the season (where has the time gone) and what might happen next year when all of these kids get a season or 2 under their belts.

The Brown game was a bit more depressing as RPI gave up a 1-0 and 2-1 lead to end the game tied to the second worse team in the ECAC but with some of the most important offensive players (Laliberte and Rogic) contributing assists and Kasdorf contributing yet another solid game, I can't complain with a tie.

Heck I am not going to complain at all, I am so stoked with how the lads responded this last weekend Now all they have to do is keep it up! :P

Friday, December 07, 2012

The YB Swing

I always enjoy the familiarity of the ECAC schedule. I enjoy RPI playing Union, chanting Clarkson still sucks, and watching the Cherry and White play the rest of their ECAC schedule. There were rumors a few years back that RPI was contemplating a jump to Hockey East. I was excited by this naturally but in reality I would have missed playing Brown, playing the Big Green doing the geographic swing of South Jersey (Princeton) and oddly Western Connecticut (the Q).

So it is with great nostalgia that I look forward to RPI playing Yale and then Brown this weekend. I have seen many a game in the HFH against these two teams. As for the actual contests this weekend, Yale is having a pretty good season, Brown not so much. Will it play out last weekend with RPI going 0-1-1? I think RPI has plenty of jump in its step and will come away with a victory at Brown.

As for Yale, well we will see. I personally think SA should keep starting the frosh in net and see where that leads us. I am expecting RPI to come away 1-1 this weekend but would be tickled pink if they pulled off a 1-0-1 weekend.

I will be cheering for the lads, win or lose!

As always, here is USCHO's picks

Rensselaer at Yale
The last time RPI was at Ingalls, the Engineers were in the midst of  last season’s mini-second half turnaround. This year’s first half has been just as disastrous as last season’s, and I’m not sure RPI has enough to derail a Yale team that has  won four straight. Yale 5-1

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Rensselaer at Brown, 4 p.m.
The Engineers and the Bears enter the weekend as the only two teams without a league win. Something’s got to give. I’ll take the home team here. Brown 4-1

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Tuesday, December 04, 2012

About Right

The thing about this RPI team this year is that they will always surprise you. At the beginning of the year they start with a hard NC games and actually play the teams well, winning some, tying some. It makes you think they are running on all cylinders.

Then they begin the ECAC season and start getting blown out. Neither goalie is good and they start relying on a frosh goaltender. Key players get hurt but somehow, RPI starts playing better. They are not going 2-0 on weekends but last weekend finishing 0-1-1 surprised me and in a good way.

It is hard to believe it is only December but the lads have but me through so many ups and downs it feels like they have played a full season already. The tie last weekend felt like a win, the lads played hard, skated well, outshot the heck out of Princeton and while they should have won, we will take the tie.

The Q is clearly one of the best teams in the country (having stomped on Union the night before) so losing to them is no big deal.

RPI is settling into the .500 team that they typically are under Appert, which is much better than how they were looking earlier this year. Hopefully they will keep winning some games to get a bit better playoff seeding but for now I will take win some/lose some. As always, I am cheering for wins and for dear old RPI!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Back At It

RPI gets back into the swing of things hosting Princeton and the Q. Princeton has been having around a .500 season so far and is the more beatable of the traveling pair. Of course, as you probably know by now, RPI will be severely understaffed as CJ Lee and others will be out for this weekend's contest.

The Q is playing lights out with a perfect ECAC record and a great overall record, not the type of team RPI will do well against as of late. Sadly, I am predicting an 0-2 weekend for our lads. This is due to RPI playing with one hand behind its back due to all the injuries but perhaps they grab a tie on Friday night. No matter what happens I will be rooting for the Cherry and White!

As always, here is USCHO's take:

Princeton at Rensselaer
The Tigers are in the midst of a seven-game road trip, but are facing an Engineers team that might be shorthanded this weekend.  Ed Weaver of The Troy Record reports that a number of players are questionable, including captain C.J. Lee.  It’s early, but a win would help RPI immensely – they’re the only team without a point in league play. RPI 4-3 (OT)

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Quinnipiac at Rensselaer
The Bobcats have been rolling along nicely lately. Not sure if a gritty, but shorthanded, Engineers’ squad will be up to the task. Quinnipiac 4-1

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Monday, November 19, 2012

Wowee Wow Wow

Well well well, just when I thought the season was going sideways for our boys in the Cherry and White they come up with a HUGE weekend against Mercyhurst. After getting outscored, outshot, just basically outworked in the previous few weekends, RPI put up 8 goals over the weekend and only letting up 3.

Goaltending was key as Merriam and rook Kasdorf both looked up to the challenge. The forwards kept up pressure and the D was good at (mostly) clearing the zone. I mean, there was so much goodness this weekend, it is tough to sum up in a blog post.

Needless to say, I am VERY high on the lads after this weekend. This was a NC game so whether this translates into ECAC play remains to be seen but that being said, if the guys put forth the effort they gave this last weekend, they should be a very tough team to contend with for the remainder of the regular season.


Friday, November 16, 2012


This weekend, RPI hosts Mercyhurst in back to back games at the HFH. I have a soft spot for Mercyhurst, they of the cool uniforms and surprising NCAA appearances, coming out of a little conference to play with the big boys.

Mercyhurst would be a tough opponent in any year and RPI is meeting them at a bad time because after starting this year slowly, they have won their last 3 games. Also, for some reason all of Mercyhurst's games so far have been on the road so RPI cannot really claim any home ice advantage for this weekend's contests.

RPI is getting back their leading scorer but it really comes down to whether the goaltending steps up or not. I thought RPI would be stacked deep at the position this year but it seems rather thin so far in ECAC play. If there is a turnaround in the crease, there will be one in the standings. Go Red!

As always, here is USCHO's take:

Mercyhurst at Rensselaer
The Engineers have seen a promising opening weekend dissolve into a mess. RPI has been outscored 19-5 in four league games and is on a five game losing streak overall.  The good news? Leading scorer Jacob Laliberte is set to return this weekend, per Ken Schott of the Schenectady Daily Gazette.  That should at least help the offense, although it might not matter if the Engineers continue to give up close to five goals a game, as they have since starting league play. Mercyhurst 4-1

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Mercyhurst at RPI
Four-point weekends are tough in college hockey. I think the Engineers prevent one here. RPI 2-1

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Well, That Happened

Ouch, what a roadtrip. RPI was outscored 8-0. They were consistently outshot by their opponent. I was worried about rotating goaltenders, especially if one was "hot" but over the last few weeks, neither has done the job. We have a frosh goalie in the wings but knowing nothing about him from the limited play he has seen this season, I am not advocating for a wholesale change...yet.

RPI fans on the message boards and the listserv are insisting there is something rotten in the state of Denmark. What is the fix, is it getting everyone back healthy, is it the D stepping up and playing better, is it the goaltenders stepping up and playing at all?

I am not offering any solutions but considering how feisty and competitive RPI was during non-conference play to start the season lo those 4 weeks ago, things have gone downhill in a hurry since Union. PLENTY of games left to be sure, it is a long season. At some point you just wish all the talk about the potential of this team and SA's recruiting will pay off. Considering the youth on this team, that payoff might be next year and I always remain hopeful!