"I felt we made a mistake in building a baseball field. I thought that should have been the ice skating rink, because I think hockey in this state right now, not just hockey, but ice skating, if you come up to our office building at 6:00 in the morning, some mornings you can't get a parking spot because parents have taken their kids up here to skate...I think hockey will be a great addition to our intercollegiate program. [The Pegula gift] is a great, great gift. And I think very far-sighted and I'm really pleased with it." - Joe Paterno

Monday, September 5, 2011

Icers Announce 2011-2012 Roster

Following months of guessing, hand-wringing and projection by fans and observers (and more importantly last week's tryouts), the Icers have released the names of the players who will participate in the final season of ACHA competition.

Before we go any further, let's take a moment to acknowledge those Icers who were squeezed out by what's purely a numbers game brought about by a situation that couldn't have been foreseen by anyone not named Battista or Pegula at the time they decided on a college. They deserved a better fate than to have to light up Ice Lions tryouts next week to continue to play hockey at PSU. They are Mac Winchester, Andrew Duval, Ryan Erbe, Kevin Miller, Mike Broccolo, Joe Zitarelli, Alan Clark and Dan Ivanir. Some played a lot, some didn't, some left before tryouts, some simply didn't make the cut, but those things are beyond the point. They wore blue and white with distinction and honor. Mark Polidor is also on that list, although he's a little bit of a special case as someone who took his senior bow (a year early), then decided to come back, then changed his mind.

Credit is due the coaching staff as well. They didn't have to keep a 30-man roster, but to the benefit of a couple returning Icers, they did.

The other noteworthy, and perhaps more surprising, development is the exclusion of a couple of the players recruited for this season before Guy Gadowsky, Keith Fisher and Matt Lindsay came to town. Creek Lewis and Matt Venoit, we hardly knew you. We do know that Venoit was injured (I've heard with a broken leg) and never really had a chance. Lewis, presumably, was healthy and just didn't live up to the promise of his torrid numbers in the Atlantic Junior Hockey League.

The rest of the roster - which includes 12 freshmen, and six each of sophomores, juniors and seniors - features all of the recruited players and NCAA Division I transfers for 2011 other than the two mentioned above, as well as 15 returning Icers from last year, including Chris Cerutti, who was parked for tryouts with a wonky MCL.

Along with the roster from the Icers side, GoPSUSports.com put out sort of an oddly-timed release today referring to the four transfers as "the first members of the men's ice hockey team." If you're not familiar, it's standard fare for those sort of things. Biographicals, quote from the coach, et cetera. The interesting thing to me is the singling out of those four at this time, although it could be related to scholarship offers, which would make sense for established DI players.

In any case, this roster, combined with what we've already seen (and will see) from our 2012 and 2013 recruiting, really adds a lot of clarity to the direction of the program during the transition to NCAA status in that the guesswork of a major variable is now out of the picture. But that all still seems like a long way off - for now, we have a Blue-White Game 25 days from today, followed by the opener against Washington & Jefferson in 32.

Defensemen (9)     Yr.   Ht.   Wgt.  Hometown
Brian Dolan        Jr.   6'1"  175   Havertown, PA
Steven Edgeworth   Fr.   6'0"  180   Phoenix, AZ
Nate Jensen        So.   6'0"  185   Shorewood, MN
Dan Loucks         Sr.   6'2"  205   Collegeville, PA
Rich O'Brien       Jr.   5'10" 180   Furlong, PA
Dan Petrick        Sr.   6'1"  180   State College, PA
Brandon Russo      Fr.   5'8"  163   Fairfield, CT
Ryan Seibolt       So.   6'3"  220   Westlake, OH
Peter Sweetland    Fr.   6'2"  205   Newtown, PA

Forwards (18)      Yr.   Ht.   Wgt.  Hometown
Tim Acker          Fr.   6'0"  188   Apex, NC
Chris Cerutti      Sr.   5'10" 170   Export, PA
Kurt Collins       Sr.   6'2"  195   Port Matilda, PA
Paul Daley         Sr.   6'2"  190   Toms River, NJ
Josh Daley         Fr.   6'0"  185   Pittsburgh, PA
Forrest Dell       Fr.   5'11" 185   Evergreen, CO
Jacob Friedman     Fr.   5'10" 170   West Bloomfield, MI
Taylor Holstrom    So.   5'9"  165   Yorba Linda, CA
Bryce Johnson      Fr.   5'9"  165   Grimes, IA
Justin Kirchhevel  So.   5'10" 190   Brookings, SD
Michael Longo      Jr.   6'1"  180   Allison Park, PA
Michael McDonagh   So.   6'1"  180   Wilmington, MA
Dan Meiselman      Fr.   6'2"  205   Winnetka, IL
Dominic Morrone    Jr.   5'11" 195   Sewell, NJ
Tommy Olczyk       Fr.   5'8"  184   Long Grove, IL
George Saad        Jr.   6'2"  200   Gibsonia, PA
Nick Seravalli     Sr.   5'8"  175   Ivyland, PA
Eric Steinour      Jr.   6'3"  195   Carlisle, PA

Goaltenders (3)    Yr.   Ht.   Wgt.  Hometown
Tim Carr           Fr.   5'10" 170   Pine Bush, NY
Matt Madrazo       So.   5'10" 165   Sea Cliff, NY
P.J. Musico        Fr.   6'2"  185   Orange, CA

4 comments:

  1. After this team goes NCAA, why not restart the ACHA DI club again and continue the tradition?

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  2. It's a fair question, and I don't see why we couldn't do something like bump the D2 team up to D1 at some point. The ACHA actually has a rule against D1 teams on the same campus as an NCAA team, but they're known for their flexible application of rules so as a longtime pillar of the association, we might get a break on that.

    Just to play devil's advocate though: is doing that "continuing the tradition?" Or is it disrespectful to the tradition to put a mid-pack team out there playing in front of parents and girlfriends? I'm not sure how I feel about that, just something to consider.

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  3. I'm inclined to see it as the latter. I don't think they'll be able to raise the booster money like the current icers do.

    I too wondered why only the transfers were listed as the first D1 players when clearly some or all of these freshmen reasonably expect to be on the team in 2012. The Icers will be wayyy better this year than last and could shellack some people that beat them last year. And I think the first few years of the D1 era might be more competitive than previously thought.

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  4. Good point about the money...really, if you look at most good ACHA programs, they have a couple things in common: 1. they're at big schools with plenty of community/sponsor support (or, if they're at small schools, they're at least ones who have made a disproportionate commitment to hockey - including the community/sponsors - like Lindenwood or Davenport) and 2. they're the big dog on campus in terms of hockey. Adrian's probably the only good ACHA D1 to buck that one, generally Robert Morris, Niagara, Western Michigan, etc. are the norm.

    You can have a good D2 at an NCAA school though. Ferris State, Western Michigan, Miami and Michigan State have all won national championships there.

    I don't want to harp on the transfer thing too much, but it was a mistake to put that out in my opinion. There's really no need to create separations where they don't exist yet.

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