Monday, October 24, 2011

Thoughts On Friday

So RPI got shellacked at ND. It was not quite the 2-1 game predicted here but sometimes a real trouncing can be more illuminating than a close game.

A few observations from watching the live ND stream (which looked great BTW! When will RPITV get into the live stream mix for us out of town fans?):

1) ND blocked a lot of shots, RPI, not so much. Of course, the way RPI was playing contributed to this. RPI in this game had the habit of firing a lot of shots from the point. ND defenders blocked a lot of these. There wasn't much movement from RPI forwards or their forward-thinking Dmen to cut and control play lower than the faceoff circles. As a consequence, fewer shots got through.

2) Once again RPI got outshot by an opponent. RPI mustered 19 shots on goal, 2 of which went for goals. Again, the way RPI played the game bore this out. They did not control the zone that much, the odd man rushes lead to a few shots but they did not build and sustain pressure. There were very few times when 5 on  that the D passed the puck in order to keep everyone in the offensive zone. RPI has been outshot so many times this season, one is starting to see a pattern.

3) Is it time to start the frosh in net? I greatly appreciate SA sticking with one goalie over the last few weeks (especially after his horribly rotational policy when he first came into RPI) but is he sticking with the right one? Merriam has earned his dues playing under York but considering how well Diebold played in defeat to start the season, shouldn't SA at least split them until one really takes the reigns. Nothing against Merriam, I am rooting for whoever is in net for the Cherry and White but sometimes a gearshift can wake up the other lads.

4) This team has some SPEED. Watching Rogic rush down the wing and Schroeder create instills and RPI fan with a team with a 1-4 record with some hope and optimism. We need everyone on this team to be healthy but clearly the horses for this year and the next few will be these frosh and soph-o-mores.

Overall ND handed us our hat on Friday night but if the lads can start playing a sustaining free wheeling system that SA is trying to implement then I think success can be had. As always, let's go RPI!

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