PREVIEW: Men’s hockey heads to Bowling Green to finish home-and-home with No. 7 Falcons

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Nick Prkusic stick-handles around Bowling Green defenders during a game on October 12, 2018 Photo credit – David Auth

By Jonathan Hanna, Sports Editor

BOWLING GREEN, OHIO– After a long holiday break, the Robert Morris men’s hockey team (5-2, 3-1 AHA) travels to Bowling Green, Ohio to finish a home-and-home series with the no. 7 ranked Falcons (8-1).

Last Time Out:

In the first leg of the home-and-home on December 1, the then 18-ranked Falcons beat the Colonials 6-3 on Neville Island. RMU started strong, with two quick goals from Randy Hernandez and Justin Addamo; however, four straight Bowling Green goals popped the tires on the Colonials’ potential upset.

Will Cullen and Cameron Wright led the Falcons with four points (1G, 3A) apiece, and Eric Dop made 15 saves in net. For the Colonials; Roman Kraemer, Randy Hernandez, and Justin Addamo were the goal scorers, and Dyllan Lubbesmeyer made 34 saves in the loss.

Recapping RMU:

Since their last matchup against Bowling Green, the Colonials have only played one series, that being an away sweep of the Air Force Falcons (0-4, 0-4 AHA) on the weekend of December 4-5. The Colonials were able to flex their offensive strength in the series, outscoring the Falcons 8-3.

In the first game of the series, a 4-1 win; saw the Colonials spread the scoring out evenly, with Nick Jenny, Aidan Spellacy, Matthew Guerra, and Nick Lalonde each finding the back of the net, with Guerra’s marking his first collegiate goal. Freshman goaltender Noah West made 27 saves in the game, his second start of the season.

In the second game, a 4-2 Colonials victory, saw an offensive explosion from UConn transfer Jordan Timmons, scoring his first career hat trick in the victory. Justin Addamo also added a goal in the victory.

Previewing Bowling Green:

Unlike the Colonials, the Falcons have been busy since the previous game between the two, playing six games and winning five of them.

The last time the Falcons were on the ice was the weekend of December 18-19, as they swept the no. 11 ranked Quinnipiac Bobcats (6-2) on the road by a combined 8-3 margin. Brandon Kruse had a goal in each game, while Connor Ford led the Falcons with four points (1G, 3A) on the weekend.

Players to Watch:
Jordan Timmons (RMU): After having an offensive explosion against Air Force, netting his first career hat trick, the Colonials will hope that his momentum has not been lost during the extended break in play for the team. On the season, the junior forward has eight points (6G, 2A); which is good for second on the team (Grant Hebert is first with nine (2G, 7A)).

Noah West (RMU): Seemingly the last line of defense for the Colonials this year; playing in three of seven games so far, the freshman netminder from Pittsboro, Indiana is currently third in save percentage (.927) in the NCAA among freshmen goalies. His 2.34 goals-against average is fifth among freshmen.

Cameron Wright (BGSU): Last time out against Robert Morris, Wright posted four points (1G, 3A) on the night, with his lone goal being the one that opened the floodgates for the Falcons. On the season, the 6’1” senior forward leads the team in points with 10 (5G, 5A).

Goaltending (BGSU): Whether it be the senior Eric Dop or the sophomore Zack Rose, the Falcons have had solid goaltending performances this season. Both Dop and Rose rank in the top-15 in the nation in goals-against average (Dop- 14th (2.01), Rose- 7th, (1.27)). So far this year, the Falcons have split the netminding duties, with Dop appearing in five games and Rose appearing in four.

Prediction:

Despite a strong effort from the Colonials, the goaltending might of the Falcons proves too much, and Robert Morris is swept in the season series by a score of 73-1 including an empty-net goal.