After being withdrawn from the 2017 Eastern States Collegiate Hockey League (ESCHL) playoffs and the ACHA D1 National Tournament by the University of Delaware, the Men’s Division 1 Ice Hockey team has resumed normal operations effective June, 1 2017.
The Blue Hens kick off next season September 15 at West Chester University and open their home schedule on October 7 against the US Naval Academy. After graduating captain John Redgate, assistant captain Vincent Zingarelli, center Corey Leskanic, and starting goaltender Dylan Troiano, Delaware will look to its talented crop of underclassmen and incoming recruits to fill the big openings left by its four Seniors. The team is also in process of replacing Head Coach Julian Giantonio, who unfortunately will not be returning to Blue Hens bench. Although disappointing that this relationship concludes after just two seasons, the program is grateful for Mr. Giantonio’s service as coach. Since his appointment in summer 2015, Giantonio held a 46-19 overall record, helped secure two ACHA National Tournament bids for the Hens in 2016 and 2017, and led the team to its first ever outright regular-season title this season in the always competitive ESCHL. Coach Giantonio also did an outstanding job in recruiting several future members of the organization, which will promote program success for seasons to come.
Senior Cole Zucker, coming off a team-high 48 points (21-27-48), has been named Team Captain and will assume the role of President for the 2017-18 season. Supporting Zucker as assistant captains will be Seniors Shane Mullin, Max Freeman, along with Junior Mike Zidansek. Junior Stephen East is expected to take Troiano’s place in the crease as starting goaltender. East has posted an impressive 10-3 record with a .918 save percentage in his career as a Blue Hen netminder thus far. Others expected to play increasingly significant roles in the 2017-18 season include Junior forward Pierce Lamberton, who is coming off a 15-goal season, Junior defenseman Ian Anderson, and Sophomores Jakob Defares, Michael Nisky, and Chris Mazzella, who each made big impacts as Freshman last season.
Senior forwards Drew Torrey and Andrew Corapi, two four year team members will be depended upon for leadership on and off the ice. Forwards Senior Dustin Rabinowitz, and Sophomores Greg Jandoli and Kevin Felice will also be expected to step up in this veteran laden lineup. On defense, the Blue Hens who have only seen two defensemen graduate the past two years will have significant depth and support with Sophomores Devin Jenny, Tommy Cascone, and Michael Patterson joining the likes of Freeman, Zidansek, Anderson, and Defares.
As the team begins its search for a new head coach, the current players would like to thank all the former players, parents, the UD Hockey Alumni Association (UDHAA), friends, and family for their support in reinstating the team after being withdrawn from 2017 postseason play. The team looks forward to continue growing this program and continuing its success on and off the ice.
Tryouts for the Blue Hen’s ACHA D1 team will be August 28th, 29th, and 30th, 2017 at the Fred Rust Ice Area. Any incoming freshman and transfers who are interested in trying out, or anyone who has any questions please contact assistant coach Alex Rubin at email@example.com.
The University of Delaware Blue Hen’s are looking forward to its continued historic success and striving and competing for a 2017-2018 ESCHL championship and D1 ACHA National Tournament appearance and championship this upcoming season.