Blue Hens sweep 2017 D-II National Champs

This past weekend, the team took on the NYU Violets right here in Newark, Delaware, coming out with another sweep! Both games were of high intensity, but Delaware came out strong yet another weekend in a row.

Friday night’s game started at 7pm at the Fred Rust Arena.  The starting line-up for the game was #25 Brian Ostrander, #28 Cole Zucker, #32 Ethan Docking, #24 Michael Zidansek, #5 Harrison Good, and between the pipes, #30 Stephen East.

The teams played hard on the ice and the penalties rolled in consistently throughout the game. The power-plays switched between the teams, keeping fans on the edges of their seats. With 3:48 left in the first, Brian Ostrander capitalized on the powerplay and scored an unassisted goal, putting Delaware in the lead at the end of the first period.

The second period started and the Violets were eager to score, doing anything they could to put one past our goalie. East and the defense stayed tight, allowing forward #22 Mike Nisky to find the net on another power-play goal with 12:58 left in the second. He was assisted by #13 Chris Mazzella and #15 Shane Mullin. Delaware held onto the lead throughout the second period, 2-0. On a last minute shot, NYU scored with 24 seconds on the clock, putting them up on the scoreboard, 2-1.

The third period started, getting more and more chippy as the game neared closing. At 14:11, Harrison Good widened the lead by scoring a goal, assisted by #16 Kevin Felice. The Blue Hens focused on keeping the lead for the rest of the game, but NYU wasn’t ready to go down so easily, scoring a goal with 2:25 left in the third. The team stayed strong and finished out the game, finalizing the score at 3-2, Delaware. Captain, Cole Zucker shared his thoughts with us from the ice, “It was a solid win, but we let our emotions get the best of us. We spent too much time in the box and played at their level. The game became a close call when we should have pulled away from them. I think it’s a good learning point for our young team. The takeaway is that we need to play with more discipline to put teams away in games to come.” Rookie, Ethan Docking agreed, “It was a chippy game. The guys were tripping and it was a very physical game from the start. There was a lot of energy, and it was a lot of fun to be out there. We could’ve stayed out of that penalty box a lot more, but we got drawn into their nonsense too frequently.”

Saturday afternoon’s game was charged; NYU was biting to getting one win to split the weekend. The starting lineup was #19 Andrew Corapi, #9 Greg Jandoli, #16 Kevin Felice, with #5 Harrison Good and #24 Mike Zidansek on defense and #30 Stephen East in the net.

First period in the game, the Blue Hens set the atmosphere with an early goal from captain Cole Zucker off an assist from #23 Devin Jenny. The Violets stepped up to the challenge, scoring a goal and tying the game with 13:26 left in the period. NYU, trying to find the back of the net, couldn’t seem to keep out of the penalty box. Mullin capitalized off a power play and scored a goal with assists from Zidansek and Zucker. With 9:32 left in the period, the Blue Hens take the lead. With seconds to spare in the first, #21 Michael Redgate provided extra cushion to the Hens’ lead by scoring a goal off an assist from #13 Chris Mazzella and #20 Ian Anderson.The boys maintained their lead throughout the rest of the game, winning 3-1. Devin Jenny told us his thoughts on the game stating, “It was definitely a hard fought game, a little sloppy in the defensive zone. East stood on his head all game, and we were able to pull out the sweep.”

Shane Mullin summed up the weekend for us, “Admittedly, it was not the best weekend but we came out with four points. Some of our players really stepped up, and East kept us in both games to get the win.”

Next weekend, the boys will be up against Rutgers. We asked Andrew Corapi about what his thoughts are going into the series. He shared, “Rutgers is always a big weekend for us, and it’s gonna be a test for our younger guys to stay composed against a gritty team. Rutgers weekend is a big matchup — we need to win.” Friday night’s game against Rutgers will be held right at the Fred Rust Arena in Newark, Delaware. Please join us for a 7pm puck drop!

 

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Written By: Daniella Fioretti

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