View Full Version : Providence Friars "Special Season 2013-214" - 1974 to 2014 40 Years of Leadership

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09-18-2013, 10:48 AM
Ok here we go new thread for 2013-14

The Friars are kicking off a "special season", a milestone entering their 40th year, playing at the New Schneider Arena and fielding one of their deepest Teams ever.


09-19-2013, 07:45 AM
So "Special Season" first ranking poll and the Friars received one vote....its a start.

The schedule shows some really fun match ups to get on the calendar to cheer the Friars on to success. Lots of great hockey ahead for Friar Nation!


Rank School 2012-13 Final Rank
1. Minnesota, 179 (18) 1
2. Boston College, 160 (1) 3
3. Clarkson, 106 7
4. Boston University, 102 2
5. North Dakota, 100 5
6. Cornell, 96 4
7. Wisconsin, 94 10
8. Mercyhurst, 70 6
9. Harvard, 41 8
10. Northeastern, 20 9

Others receiving votes: Minnesota Duluth, 8; Darmouth, 4; Ohio State, 4; St. Lawrence, 3; Quinnipiac, 2; Providence, 1.

Mark the Calendar:

Big Test 1 - #8 Mercyhurst - Home Series at Providence New Schneider Arena - 10/12/13 @ 2:00 p.m. & 10/13/13 1:00 p.m.

Big Test 2 - #10 Northeasten Home/Home Series - PC at Northeastern (pick best High Def Streaming or Best Classic Arena in Women's Hockey) Boston, MA 7:00 p.m. & 10/26/13 Northeastern @ Providence New Schneider Arena 3:00 p.m.

Big Test 3 - #2 Boston College Home/Home Series - 11/01/13 Boston College @ Providence New Schneider Arena 7:00 p.m. &
11/03/13 Friars @ Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA 2:00 p.m.

Big Test 4 - #3 Clarkson (but preseason ECAC #1 pick) Friars pack up for BIG ROAD TRIP to Postdam NY 11/15/13 at 3:00 p.m. & 11/16/13 at 3:00 p.m.


09-19-2013, 08:34 PM

Picture day - Weber and Halvorson appear to add real size.

09-19-2013, 10:35 PM
Just noticed the "40 years" in the banner. Cross town rival Bruno is celebrating 50 years of female hockey this year.

09-20-2013, 05:08 AM
Just noticed the "40 years" in the banner. Cross town rival Bruno is celebrating 50 years of female hockey this year.

Amazing! Will be an extra special Mayor's Cup Challenge this year!

09-24-2013, 11:38 AM
For those of you close to Providence a lot is happening to kick off the season this week.

Schneider Grand Re-Opening 6:30 PM Friday September 27
Date: 9/27/2013
Time: 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM
Location: Providence College
Schneider Arena
One Cunningham Square
Providence, RI 02918

Contact Information
Jennifer Cunningham
Assistant Director, Athletic Development

Please register by Tuesday, September 24th!

You are invited to join College President Rev. Brian J. Shaley, O.P. '80, Athletic Director Bob Driscoll, head men's ice hockey coach Nate Leaman and head women's ice hockey coach Bob Deraney along with members of the Providence College community, alumni, parents and friends at the grand re-opening of Schneider Arena.

The evening will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony and blessing of the new building along with tours of the new 30,000-square foot addition to the rink. In addition, Providence College Athletics has teamed up with the Clarke Family-Cortlandt '67, Sara and Becky, husband and daughters of the late Penny Clarke, a longtime PC hockey supporter - to offer a cocktail reception including a cash bar and heavy appetizers. The evening will also feature a live & silent auction with proceeds to benefit the men's and women's hockey programs.

Auction items will include:
Friar Fantasy Package: includes two men's basketball floor seats to a mutually agreeable game, dinner with Athletic Director Bob Driscoll, two tickets to a men’s ice hockey mutually agreeable game in the luxury box, and an autographed 2013-14 team jersey.

Golf with Nate Leaman: You and two friends spend an afternoon with Coach Leaman golfing at Quidnessett Country Club. Includes lunch with Coach.

Patriots Tickets: Signed/Framed Rob Gronkowksi Jersey with a signed/ framed Rob Gronkowski Photo along with 2 tickets to the Browns vs. Patriots home game on 12/8/13

Bruins Legend: Bobby Orr Autographed jersey and tickets to a Boston bruins game.

Boston Bruins Insider Package: Includes a signed/framed Milan Lucic jersey with two tickets to a Bruins home game and a visit to the 98.5 radio booth with Dave Goucher and Bob Beers.

Ticket Information:
Adults ($30 per person)
Children 12 & Under (FREE)

Schedule of Events:

6:30 PM- Cocktail Reception with heavy hors d'oeuvres & cash bar in the new Atrium
Tours of the new building will be offered
Silent & Live auction items will be available

7:30 PM- Ribbon Cutting Ceremony and speaking program
The Clarke Family will present the Penny Clarke Memorial Award to former Friar and
longtime hockey supporter Len Clarkin '65

8:00 PM- Open Skate (bring your own skates) All attendees are
welcome to lace up their skates. Members of the men's and
women's hockey teams will be on ice.
On ice autographs and pictures will be available with
members of the current men's and women's ice hockey

Donors to this project will be invited to a VIP reception prior to the celebration in the Leary Friends of Friar Hockey Room. If you are interested in supporting this project please contact Steve Napolillo at 401-865-2677 or Joe Hulbig at 401-865-1171.

Go Friars!

McGill @ Providence 7 PM Saturday, September 28
First chance to watch the new Video Screen Scoreboard in action!

Providence Women's Hockey Day 12 noon to 3 PM, Sunday, September 29, - FREE
Tour the Arena, Get on the ice and do drills, autographs, gift prizes and raffles.
Details & sign up here:

The Friars Kid's Club provides an exciting experience for Friar Fan's age 13 and under! As a member, your child will have the opportunity to interact with student-athletes, meet other young fans and, of course, have fun!

Benefits include:
-FREE admission to over 100 games including 3 men's -basketball games
-Welcome packet with autographed picture of Friar Dom
-Birthday card from Friar Dom
-Invitation to special events and quarterly member e- newsletter
-Online games, puzzles, contests and more!

Membership costs $25 per year for the first child you sign up and $15 for each subsequent child.

Sign-up here today:
http://ev6.evenue.net/cgi-bin/ncommerce3/SEGetEventInfo?ticketCode=GS%3APROV%3ASE13%3AKIDS% 3A&linkID=prov&shopperContext&pc&caller&appCode&groupCode=SE

09-26-2013, 10:07 AM
The Friars moved back into to the New Schneider last night and lots of "oooohs and aaaahs" on Twitter you would think you were watching 4th of July Fireworks!

Nice Kudos here to the Friars and some key players



Even with the loss of leading scorer Nicole Anderson and top-six forward Jessica Vella, the Friars’ offense looks to be in good shape. Sophomore Molly Illikainen will improve production-wise from her rookie total of 30 points in 35 games to help lead the offense; Haley Frade, Corinne Buie, Brooke Simpson, Beth Hanrahan, freshman Cassidy Carels, and transfer Janine Weber are all good top-six options as well.

Between Rebecca Morse, Maggie Pendleton, and Lexi Slattery, Providence will have a very mobile defense, perhaps the best in the conference if they can reach their potential. Lexi Romanchuk also has solid top-four ability, giving the Friars some depth on the back-end. The only big question for the team heading into the year is goaltending. Sarah Bryant eventually earned the starting job over Nina Riley last year, but she was sub-par, with an .882 save percentage and 3.15 goals against average. The defense will have less to adjust to this season, however, which will help limit scoring chances against.

Key Player: Sarah Bryant

Goaltending is the only real hinderance to Providence on paper and if Bryant can come in this season and establish herself as a true, consistent starter, it will help matters greatly.


The Friars have a great opportunity this year to improve on last season and jump a few spots in the Hockey East standings. With very good top-six forwards and top-four defensemen, I expect Providence to climb to third, as long as they can get fairly decent goaltending.

Predicted Standings

Boston College
Boston University
New Hampshire

Preseason All-Hockey East First Team

Haley Skarupa, Sophomore, Forward, Boston College

Sarah Lefort, Sophomore, Forward, Boston University

Molly Illikainen, Sophomore, Forward, Providence

Rebecca Morse, Senior, Defense, Providence

Emily Pfalzer, Junior, Defense, Boston College

Roxanne Douville, Senior, Goaltender, Vermont

Preseason All-Hockey East Second Team

Paige Savage, Sophomore, Forward, Northeastern

Amanda Pelkey, Junior, Forward, Vermont

Emily Field, Junior, Forward, Boston College

Alexis Crossley, Sophomore, Defense, New Hampshire

Maggie DiMasi, Senior, Defense, Northeastern

Kerrin Sperry, Senior, Goaltender, Boston University

Preseason Awards

Player of the Year: Haley Skarupa, Boston College

Defenseman of the Year: Rebecca Morse, Providence

Goaltender of the Year: Roxanne Douville, Vermont

Rookie of the Year: Andie Anastos, Boston College (edited note.....or someone from the FRAIRS!!!)

09-29-2013, 09:49 AM
Friars Win 5-3


So great opening weekend and lots to be happy about.

Off the Ice - the New Schneider Arena is best I have been in for Women's Hockey. Right size, incredible video scoreboard, second to none locker room, video room, training facilities (weights, sprint turf area, spin bike room, core room, shooting and stickhandling room, training room with Hot pool and Cold pool that can each fit 8 players). The Friends of the Friar's Room has also been upgraded and offers great new experience for fans.

On the Ice - Last night everyone played accept one injured player, the Team has best depth I have seen and Team rolled 4 lines and 4 sets of D. Hard to judge the chemistry of lines this early but clear that new players Cassie Carels and Janine Weber are going to have impact on the scoreboard and box score. Brooke Simpson scored a beautiful penalty shot that showcased her scoring ability. On D all the freshman Liv Halvorson, Ari Reid, Kendra Goodrich, Ari Buxman had good opportunity to get in the mix and show their skills. Lexi Romanchuk, Victoria Virtue and Lexi Slattery paired well with the incoming D. Would guess some of the D that played last night may show up as F at points in the season.

Seniors - Nina Riley started an allowed no goals in her one period in the net. Corinne Buie looked very good especially when paired with Carels and Weber later in the game. Rebecca Morse D scored the first goal and played a very smart game with no penalties. Senior Maggie Pendleton was wearing the "C" last night and looked stronger than a year ago in all three zones.

Off to Union next week to face a tougher opponent in Union.


09-30-2013, 07:54 AM
Forward Line Up vs. McGill
(from Box Score)

These were the stated lines Saturday night. Likely some shifting this week as Buie (coming off injury rotated across the lines) and Frade should be back and in line up at Union. Will be interesting to see if one D on roster plays F to create 4 lines. This is a potent line up that like last year should create a lot of goals across all the forward lines.

LW 16 Brittney Thunstrom 1-0-1 4/+1 C 10 Molly Illikainen 0-0-0 2/+1 RW 5 Courtney Kukowski 0-1-1 1/+1

LW 28 Beth Hanrahan 0-0-0 3/-1 C 17 Brooke Simpson 1-0-1 1/-2 RW 26 Allison Micheletti 0-0-0 0/-2

LW 9 Stephanie DeMars 0-0-0 2/+2 C 12 Janine Weber 1-1-2 2/+2 RW 29 Cassidy Carels 1-0-1 2/+1

10-01-2013, 09:15 AM
Nice Preview of Friars & Hockey East


Providence College Season Preview
By Arlan Marttila • Women's Division I Columnist • Sept. 30, 2013

After Boston College, the conference race looks to be wide open, and it wouldn’t take much imagination to draw up a wide array of scenarios that could unfold. I’m going to look in a different direction than the league’s coaches and pick Providence to wind up in the second spot.

“When you have a young team, you just have to get the basics down,” Deraney said. “When you have a team like we have, even though we’re bringing in five new freshmen and a graduate student, we can start from much higher ground this year. That’s what excites me most, to be able to take this team to another level from an execution standpoint, the things we want to do in all phases of the game: offense, defense, and special teams.”

A season ago, the Friars were inexperienced and exhibited a few growing pains.

“Last year, much to a lot of people’s surprise, we were kind of opposite of what we usually are,” Deraney said. “We were the number nine team in offense nationally, but yet, we were the 30th team in team defense. That is so uncharacteristic for us. I think that had a lot to do with how young we were at the defense position and in the goaltending position.”

Goaltending in particular needed a period of adjustment, as franchise goalie Genevieve Lacasse had seen the lion’s share of the action until her graduation. Sophomore Sarah Bryant played the majority of the minutes in goal as a rookie, but senior Nina Riley got the call in the final three games and figures to have the inside track coming into the season.

“I think our goaltending is a year older now with the year of experience,” Deraney said.

The defensive unit also gains that experience; the entire blue line that started down the stretch returns. In addition it has been bolstered by some recruits.

“A year older really excites me,” Deraney said. “I think we’ll be a year tougher. We’ll know how to defend better — what it takes to defend against really talented teams and hard-nosed teams.”

Offensively, Providence brings back nine skaters who recorded double-digit points.

“I’ll be very disappointed if we’re not in the upper half of team defense, and I expect our offense to be even better,” Deraney said. “That’s why I’m so optimistic about this season for our team.”

Read more: http://www.uscho.com/2013/09/30/providence-college-season-preview/#ixzz2gTnpGdxk

10-02-2013, 03:13 PM
Women's Ice Hockey Opens Season With A Road Series
The Friars travel to Schenectady, N.Y. to take on the Union College Dutchwomen.

Hanrahan tallied two goals in the 4-0 win against Union last season.

Oct. 2, 2013

Game Notes at Union http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/prov/sports/w-hockey/auto_pdf/2013-14/release/release_20131002aaa.pdf

Providence, R.I. - The Providence College women's ice hockey team will take on the Union College Dutchwomen for their season opener. The Friars will travel to Schenectady, N.Y. for a two game road series with Union.

Puck drop for the first game of the season will be at 7:00 p.m. on Friday, Oct. 4 at the Frank L. Messa Rink in Schenectady, N.Y. The Friars will wrap up the weekend with a game on Saturday, Oct. 5 at 4:00 p.m. against the Dutchwomen.

Providence is 11-3-2 all-time on the road in season opening games. The last time the Friars opened their season on the road was during the 2011-12 season, when the Friars traveled to Bemidji State for a weekend series against the Beavers. The Friars earned a 0-1-1 record that weekend. Overall in season opening games Providence holds a 23-9-3 record. Last season the Friars played host to Bemidji State, where the two split the weekend.
The Dutchwomen opened their season on Saturday, Sept. 28 with a game against the Connecticut Huskies. Union won their season opener 3-2 with three different goal scorers. Kathryn Tomaselli, Bryanne Panshuk and Maddy Norton tallied the Dutchwomen's three goals. Courtney Turner assisted on two of the goals for Union. Shenae Lundberg was between the pipes for Union for the entire 60 minutes of play. Lunberg made a total of 27 saves in the win. Union welcomes five freshman to the 2013-14 squad to replace its five graduated seniors.

The Friars and Dutchwomen have met a total of three times in the history of the two teams. Providence holds the edge with a 3-0-0 record against Union. Last time the Friars faced Union was during the 2012-13 season, when Providence blanked the Dutchwomen 4-0 to earn the win. Now sophomore Sarah Bryant (Bethlehem, Pa.) earned her first collegiate shutout in the win over Union. Now junior Beth Hanrahan (Poolesville, Md.) and sophomore Molly Illikainen notched two points apiece in the win.

The Friars took on the McGill Marlets in an exhibition game on Saturday, Sept. 28 in Schneider Arena to kickoff the season. Providence earned a 5-3 victory in a back and forth game. Five different Friars found the back of the night against McGill. Senior Rebecca Morse (Westfield, N.J.) and graduate student Janine Weber (Innsbruck, Austria) notched a goal and an assist each to help the Friars in the win. Junior Brooke Simpson (Boxboro, Mass.) tallied a backhand goal after being awarded a penalty shot. Sophomore Brittney Thunstrom (Coon Rapids, Minn.) and freshman Cassidy Carels (Bruxelles, Manitoba) wrapped up the scoring for the Friars. In net, all three Friar goaltenders made an appearance. Senior Nina Riley (Lexington, Mass.) made 10 saves on 10 shots during the first period of play. Sophomores Sarah Bryant (Bethlehem, Pa.) and Allie Morse(Cottage Grove, Minn.) made eight and five saves, respectively.

Live statistics and streaming will be provided by Union College.


Women's Hockey to host Providence College
The women's hockey team returns to Messa Rink to welcome Providence College on Friday, October 4 at 7:00 p.m. EST. and Saturday October 5 at 4 p.m. EST.

Don't miss a minute of the action, watch live here on the home for Union Athletics web video!

Enhanced video streaming returns for 2013-14
Union College Athletics and Pack Network once again have partnered to offer an industry-leading streaming video solution. Live event productions that include an on-screen scoreboard and graphics will highlight the new service. This season, field hockey, football, men's and women's basketball, men's and women's hockey, men's and women's lacrosse, and select volleyball home events will be streamed live right here on UnionAthletics.TV.

The UnionAthletics.TV All-Access Pass, available for $79.95, gives fans the opportunity to watch not only all the live coverage of various Union home athletic events, but also an in-depth archive section of all video produced for the site. All-Access subcribers can view every event that airs live on UnionAthletics.TV as well as all the recordings of the events. Single-event subscriptions for all live events will be available throughout the season for $7.95.

Want to learn more?
Check out the FAQs page to learn more about Union's new streaming video service. Or, please submit any questions and comments you may have using the Pack Network support form (will open in a new window).


10-05-2013, 10:12 AM
Ok opening on the rode off broadway.....first outcome goes to Union 5-2.

PC Ran the Following Top Three Lines - which over time should have impact. Cassie Carels (as against McGill) scored off a nice tip from Lexi Romanchuk blast.

LW 21 Haley Frade 0-0-0 5/-1 C 17 Brooke Simpson 0-1-1 0/-1 RW 28 Beth Hanrahan 0-0-0 2/-1
LW 16 Brittney Thunstrom 0-0-0 3/-2 C 10 Molly Illikainen 0-0-0 1/-3 RW 5 Courtney Kukowski 0-0-0 0/-2
LW 29 Cassidy Carels 1-0-1 3/+1 C 12 Janine Weber 0-1-1 0/+1 RW 11 Corinne Buie 0-1-1 2/+1

This group spotted in a few different ways through the game.
LW 9 Stephanie DeMars 0-0-0 0/E XD 18 Arianna Reid 0-0-0 0/E RW 26 Allison Micheletti 0-0-0 0/

The D pairs looked like this for most of the game:
LD 14 Victoria Virtue 0-0-0 0/-1 RD 8 Lexi Romanchuk 0-1-1 2/E
LD 2 Maggie Pendleton 1-0-1 2/-1 RD 22 Kendra Goodrich 0-0-0 0/-1
LD 7 Rebecca Morse 0-0-0 4/-1 RD 4 Liv Halvorson 0-0-0 0/E

The Friars were 1 of 4 on PP or 25% which would be a great place to be at for season. On PK they allowed 2 G on 7 Union PP or 71%, opportunity to improve on penalties taken and PK.

The game scratches were D Slattery, D Buxman, D Lundeen

10-06-2013, 07:20 AM
Thats what I am talking about......It is a wrap and a split at Union College with a 6-2 win. This looked like the type of offense PC can bring with their line up. Saturday there was some juggling up front and it seemed to generate offense throughout the game as the Friars launched 39 shots. They were effective on the Power Play 2 of 5 (now 3 of 9 for 33% for the year). The Team took only 4 penalties and gave up one goal (now 3 of 11 on PK of 73%).

Molly Illikainen had a big day with 2 goals (or maybe 1 goal and 1 for Buie the first Friar goal is listed a few ways at this point - regardless Buie was huge in play yesterday). Freshman Cassie Carels also had two goals, her three for the weekend is a great start. D Victoria Virtue sniped a pretty goal from the side boards and Beth Hanrahan finished the game with a ENG.

Here is a nice post game with Carels - http://www.youtube.com/user/ProvidenceFriarsWIH

The Team played good defense limiting Union to only 20 shots. Sarah Bryant was steady in goal and stopped 18 shots for the win.

From the Box Score
LW 12 Janine Weber 0-0-0 3/E C 11 Corinne Buie 1-1-2 2/+1 RW 26 Allison Micheletti 0-0-0 2/+1
LW 21 Haley Frade 0-0-0 1/+1 C 10 Molly Illikainen 1-0-1 3/+1 RW 5 Courtney Kukowski 0-0-0 0/E
LW 29 Cassidy Carels 2-0-2 2/E C 17 Brooke Simpson 0-1-1 6/+1 RW 28 Beth Hanrahan 1-0-1 4/+2
LW 16 Brittney Thunstrom 0-0-0 2/+1 RW 9 Stephanie DeMars 0-0-0 0/E

On defense:
D 2 Maggie Pendleton 0-2-2 0/+2 D 22 Kendra Goodrich 0-1-1 1/+1
LD 14 Victoria Virtue 1-0-1 3/+1 RD 8 Lexi Romanchuk 0-1-1 1/+2
D 7 Rebecca Morse 0-1-1 1/+1 D 4 Liv Halvorson 0-1-1 1/-1
D 18 Arianna Reid 0-0-0 1/E

In goal: Sarah Bryant
Backing up: Nina Riley, Allie Morse

Out of Line Up - D Slattery, D Lundeen, D Buxman

Next week Special Season moves to Test #1 versus perennial national power Mercyhurst, who split at Mankato and lost at home yesterday in OT 4-3 to The Ohio State. They will come to the New Schneider Arena hungry to get back in National Rankings.


10-07-2013, 12:49 PM
Cassidy Carels Named HOCKEY EAST Rookie Of The Week
Carels helped the Friars to their first win of the season with the game-winning goal.

Carels had a three-goal performance in her first collegiate weekend of play.

Oct. 7, 2013

WAKEFIELD, Mass. - Providence College freshman Cassidy Carels (Bruxelles, Manitoba) of the women's ice hockey team was named Hockey East Rookie of the Week, it was announced by the league today (Oct. 7.).

Carels had a standout collegiate debut for the Friars at Union College on Friday, Oct. 4 and Saturday, Oct. 5. The rookie forward notched three goals over the weekend, including the game-winner in the Friars' 6-2 win over Union on Saturday. Carels scored a power-play goal on Saturday to compliment her game winner to earn her first career multi-point game.

The last Friar to earn Rookie of the Week honors was current sophomore Sarah Bryant (Bethlehem, Pa.) on Feb. 4 for helping the Friars in a weekend sweep over Hockey East foe Connecticut. Bryant tallied her first career road shutout that weekend with 19 saves on Feb. 1 at Connecticut.

Carels and the Friars are back in action this Saturday, Oct. 12 when the team plays host to Mercyhurst in their home opener. The game is set for a 2:00 p.m. puck drop at Schneider Arena. Providence will wrap-up the two game home series on Sunday, Oct. 13 at 1:00 p.m.


Great honor to Cassie, me thinks first of many! First year Friar Janine Weber is also likely to achieve this award a few times this year (assuming a Post Grad is eligible).

10-08-2013, 05:11 PM
National power Mercyhurst invades Schneider this Saturday and Sunday sporting a 1-2-0 record versus the 1-1-0 Friars. Mercyhurst has played two tough WCHA opponents MSU at Mankato and The Ohio State at home.

Oct 05, 2013 Erie, Pa. Ohio State 4, Mercyhurst 3 OT
Sep 28, 2013 Mankato, Minn. Mercyhurst 3, Minnesota State 2
Sep 27, 2013 Mankato, Minn. Minnesota State 4, Mercyhurst 2

Mercyhurst brings a strong offense outshooting opponents 38 to 27 in the first three games. While the Friars outshot Union 28.5 to 20 last weekend.

Mercyhurst Point/Shot Leaders
## POINTS G A Pts Shots
27 Christine Bestland 2 3 5 24
13 Shelby Bram 0 4 4 9
16 Jenna Dingeldein 3 0 3 9
25 Jillian Skinner 0 2 2 1
8 Kaleigh Chippy 1 0 1 9
21 Christie Cicero 1 0 1 22
14 Maggie Rothgery 1 0 1 6
6 Taylor Accursi 0 1 1 2
24 Jaclyn Arbour 0 1 1 5
5 Molly Byrne 0 1 1 18

Providence will need strong goaltedning and need to control Bestland, Bram and Dingeldein a trio of dangerous scorers.

10-09-2013, 11:23 AM
Preseason info on Mercyhurst:

For the first time in three years, the lineup of teams in College Hockey America looks exactly the same as it did the year before. How long that will last remains to be seen, but at least for now, the rumors all involve teams joining the CHA, not leaving it.

“For the women’s game, you just want it to grow as big as possible,” Mercyhurst coach Michael Sisti said. “You want the number of teams to grow, the competition level to grow, certainly the attendance to grow, and all those things may lead to more games in the NCAA tournament, more games on TV So it’s a work in progress, but hopefully, things are going in the right direction.”

The league has stabilized at the critical number of six teams, and it is his understanding that the conference automatic bid will be awarded as early as 2015.

“It’s been an interesting journey, but things are highly competitive now, which is what you want,” said Sisti, the only coach who has watched the entire history of the league unfold, because his is the only team that has been a league member from the beginning.

“Last year with the playoffs, a couple of those [best-of-three] series, one went to three games, which was really exciting,” Sisti said. “The rivalries are building and some really nice traditions are growing.”

It is almost tempting to pick a different champion just to mix things up and honor the league’s tradition of change.

But who? Syracuse lost its top two scorers. Robert Morris is inexperienced in net. RIT graduated its veteran core. Lindenwood’s goalie can steal games, but it is another thing to steal a title. Penn State just has too far to go in one year.

I guess that leaves Mercyhurst. The Lakers have actually had to fend off a late challenge the last couple of seasons, but I don’t see it coming down to the wire this year. Mercyhurst has too much pop at the top of the line chart that the others can’t match. The Lakers have won all 12 CHA season titles, and 13 shouldn’t prove unlucky for the gang from Erie. It’s just as well, because this is the only league I ever manage to predict correctly.

A more detailed preview:

Mercyhurst Lakers
Projected Finish: First
CHA Coaches Poll: First
Previous Season: First, 17-3-0, 34 points
Key Departures: Stephanie Ciampa, Lauren Jones, Jenna Hendrikx, Stephanie DeSutter, Gina Buquet, Kelsey Welch
Arrivals: Taylor Accursi, Sara Besseling, Paige Horton, Brianna Kennelly, Jillian Skinner, Megan Whiddon
Key Players: Christine Bestland (28-44-72), Jenna Dingeldein (15-28-43), Emily Janiga (19-22-41)

As was the case last year, Mercyhurst enters the season needing to replace its primary goaltender.

“It’s too early to tell exactly how we’re going to navigate through it,” said coach Michael Sisti. “[Amanda] Makela has a lot of experience, but we like our other two goalies as well. Without great goaltending, you just can’t have the season you hope to have. Everything starts there, and hopefully, we’re solid in net again.”

Goaltending is made all the more important because the Lakers’ defense figures to make some mistakes along the way.

“We’re pretty young back on ‘D,’” Sisti said. “Most of our freshmen play right away, which from a recruiting standpoint they enjoy, but with that comes learning on the go. It’s good to have someone like [juniors] Molly [Byrne] and [Caroline] Luczak back there that have from day one played a lot of games.”

Few teams in an Olympic year can send out a trio of forwards coming off seasons of more than 40 points, but Mercyhurst can with CHA Player of the Year Christine Bestland and sophomores Jenna Dingeldein and Emily Janiga. That’s a big advantage in the CHA, where none of the other teams return even one scorer of that caliber.

“We’re going to need support from other players, too,” Sisti said. “We’ve got a combination of some new players who haven’t quite been in the fire before, and we have some players that are returning that maybe haven’t played as big a role for us in the past. We’re going to need them to step up, because it’s tough to win games with two or three people. We’re going to need a good chunk of our team to step up in all different areas to be successful. If we can do that, we’ll be fine. If not, it’ll be a tough year. That’s the challenge.”

Read more: http://www.uscho.com/2013/10/02/mercyhurst-season-preview/#ixzz2hF4JEkjQ

10-14-2013, 05:21 AM
Friars “A Tale of Two Cities” or “The Journey to Two Points”

It was the Best of Times it was the Worst of Times…..Friar Nation had a little bit of everything this weekend but I believe we saw some super great things in the battle against #10 Mercyhurst as the team moved to 2-2 in the young season.

Saturday 5-0 Mercyhurst

The Team battled hard matching Mercyhurst on shots but not finding the back of the net, despite 9 PP opportunities. The Friars had 9 penalties including a major in a very physical game.

Mercyhurst led 1-0 after 1st, then rode 3 PP goals (2 on a 5 minute major) and a SH goal to go up 5-0 after the 2nd. Mercyhurt’s goaltender Amanda Makela played very well (both games).

A silver lining on Saturday was the Friars started Sarah Bryant (6 saves, 3 goals), inserted Nina Riley (10 saves, 2 goals) during the 2nd and finished with Allie Morse (16 saves, 0 goals) playing the third. All three competed hard and gained experience for the season.

Sunday 3-2 Providence

Sunday the potential we love about the Team showed up. Mercyhurst Corinne Buie was huge in all three zones and scored a beautiful water bottle blast in the second to get things rolling for Providence (has 2 G and 3 A in first four games, off to great start). Janine Weber our International Post Grad tipped in a pretty goal off a shot by Buie in the first minute of the 3rd to record her first Friar goal! Haley Frade finished the scoring with the GWG. (Check the video highlights http://www.hockeyeastonline.com/women/index.php).

Sarah Bryant was in goal and filled the #27 and the history it carries with a Lacasse type performance in goal. Mercyhurst never quit fighting to score all day and came hard at the net forcing 47 saves and 24 in the third period.

Providence played strong Team D and Rebecca Morse (2 A) and Lexi Romanchuk (1 A) were very active in the play offensively. Lexi Slattery returned to the lineup on Sunday (1 A) after missing Union series.

Providence, R.I. - A 3-2 win over No. 10 Mercyhurst University gave the Providence College women's ice hockey team their first home of the season on Sunday, Oct. 13 at Schneider Arena. Following the weekend split with Mercyhurst, the Friars record improves to 2-2-0 overall.

Neither team could break through in the first period as sophomore Sarah Bryant (Bethlehem, Pa.) made 13 saves for the Friars and the Amanda Makela stopped all 12 shots from Providence. Each team had two power play opportunities but the game remained scoreless after 20 minutes of play.
At 9:03 of the second period Mercyhurst broke the scoreless tie when Shelby Bram got the puck past Bryant. Christie Cicero got the original shot on goal that Bryant made the stop on but Bram followed up on the play to score and give the Lakers a 1-0 lead.

Senior Corinne Buie (Edina, Minn.) evened the score for the Friars at the 12:44 mark of the middle period. Passing by senior Rebecca Morse (Westfield, N.J.) and sophomore Lexi Slattery (Lino Lakes, Minn.) on the Friar's breakout allowed Buie to enter the Lakers zone. Buie fired a slapshot from just inside the blue line that beat Makela clean on her glove side. It was Buie's second goal of the season that tied the game at 1-1.

Graduate Student Janine Weber (Innsbruck, Austria) tallied her first goal as a Friar just 17 seconds into the third period. Freshman Lexi Romanchuk (San Jose, Calif.) got the puck to Buie who fired a shot from the boards that made its way towards the net. Weber deflected Buie's shot high past Makela to give the Friars a 2-1 lead.

The game winning goal was scored by junior Haley Frade (Marion, Mass.) at 15:11 of the third period while the Friars were on a power play. Sophomore Molly Illikainen (Grand Rapids, Minn.) sent a pass across the offensive zone to Morse, who fired the puck from the blueline. Morse's shot left a rebound for Frade on the backdoor. Frade tallied her first goal of the season on the play.

Mercyhurst responded to the two goal deficit with a goal that cut the Friars lead in half at 15:27. Cicero skated in alone and sent a shot from the slot past Bryant. Cicero's goal cut the Friars' lead to 3-2 but Providence held on in the final minutes of play to earn the victory.

Bryant had a strong game in goal for the Friars as she notched a career-best 47 saves. She surpassed her previous career high of 35 saves, which came on Nov. 30, 2012 in a game against Boston University. The last time a Providence goaltender made 40+ saves was on March 4, 2012 when Genevieve Lacasse made 48 saves against Boston University (edit - YES THAT (7.3 second) FATEFUL GAME…)

Providence's special teams played a major role in the game as the Friars were perfect on the penalty kill, going 6-for-6 in the game. Providence also was able to best Mercyhurst in face-offs, winning 40 out of 73.

The Friars' next game is against Syracuse on Friday, Oct. 18 at 7:00 p.m. at Schneider Arena. The two teams will complete the home series with a 3:00 p.m. game on Saturday, Oct. 19.


10-18-2013, 02:53 PM
So here we go weekend #3

Syracuse at Providence - Two-Game Series, Friday 7 PM, Saturday at 3 PM at the New Schneider Arena

The Hockey East Weekly Games Release had these factoids:

- After the first four games, Providence's offense ranks 10th in the nation (2.75 gpg) and second in the league with 11 goals.

- Sophomore forward Molly Illikainen (Grand Rapids, Minn.) ranks third in the league with a faceoff winning percentage of 71% (64 of 90).

Looking at Stats within Hockey East here is where PC stands

Scoring – 2nd at 2.75 behind BC at 3.25

Defense – 6th at 3.5 goals against

Penalties – 1st 16.2 minutes per game - (Not a category we want to dominate)

Power Play – 3rd with 4 G out of 24 opportunities 16.7% (outside or 0 for 9 last Saturday PP has big strong)

Penalty Kill – 7th 20/26 76.9% - amazed to see BU is 100% on the year

Scoring by Period 3rd - 3 in 1st – 3 in 2nd – 5 in 3rd (I like this trend of scoring strong in 3rd)

Goals against by Period – 6th 2 in 1st – 8 in 2nd – 4 in 3rd

Syracuse is 1-3-0

Scoring 1.75 Goals / Game (Edge to Friars)

Defense 2.25 Goals Against / Game (Edge to Orange)

Penalties 13.0 Minutes /game (Edge to Orange)

Power Play 4 for 22 18.2% (Edge to Orange)

Penalty Kill 4/19 – 78.9% (Edge to Orange)

Nicole Renault has 3 goals and is Syracuse's threat to score

Kallie Billadeau a senior has a .936 Save % and a 2.28 GA and is one of the top goalies in the country (last year #8).

Here is hoping for an Opening Series Game Win!


10-19-2013, 07:58 AM
First Friday Win! 2-1 over Syracuse

To win a series you have to win the first game and the Friars put themselves in position Friday night against a very tough goalie Kallie Billadeau.

The line units continue to shift and I like the way that three lines carried the pace last night. Stephanie Demars and Brittney Thunstrum have spotted in and provided energy and impact on their shifts. Last night Weber and Buie were both a great force playing a power game.

LW 29 Cassidy Carels 0-1-1 1/+1 C 17 Brooke Simpson 0-0-0 1/+1 RW 28 Beth Hanrahan 0-0-0 1/E
LW 21 Haley Frade 0-0-0 2/E C 10 Molly Illikainen 0-0-0 3/E RW 5 Courtney Kukowski 0-1-1 1/+1
LW 12 Janine Weber 1-0-1 7/+1 C 11 Corinne Buie 1-0-1 1/+1 RW 26 Allison Micheletti 0-0-0 1/E
LW 16 Brittney Thunstrom 0-1-1 1/+1 RW 9 Stephanie DeMars 0-0-0 0/E

The depth on D is a great strength and the Friar D appear to be jumping up in the play more and are more active in the O zone. Liv Halvorson and Kendra Goodrich are logging major time and playing very well in their first year. Three Friar D were not dressed last night so lots of depth.

LD 2 Maggie Pendleton 0-0-0 3/E RD 7 Rebecca Morse 0-0-0 0/E
LD 14 Victoria Virtue 0-0-0 3/+2 RD 8 Lexi Romanchuk 0-1-1 2/+1
LD 22 Kendra Goodrich 0-0-0 0/+1 RD 4 Liv Halvorson 0-0-0 0/E
XD 18 Arianna Reid 0-0-0 0/E

The Friars had another great performance in goal last night by Sarah Bryant following up on her strong Mercyhurst win last Sunday. She looked confident, played big and was active in playing the puck and even starting the counter attack several times.

G 27 Sarah Bryant 0-0-0 0

Pack your brooms and get the sweep!


10-19-2013, 10:26 AM
Friars' win over Mercyhurst now looks more impressive with the Lakers shutting out Clarkson last night.