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College Hockey:
2008-09 Princeton Season Preview

Offense

The Tigers were merciless with the puck last year, scoring nearly three and a half goals per game against league opponents and leading ECAC Hockey in that category. They led their colleagues in overall scoring as well, burying 112 goals in 35 contests for a 3.2 average, and shot with a better than 10 percent success rate (opposing goalies limited to a .897 save rate).

And when you’re torching ECAC goalkeepers more effectively than out-of-conference foes, you know you’re doing something right.

Stankievech was the only double-digit scorer to graduate last spring, as Jubinville (12-27-39), Wilson (15-20-35) and MacIntyre (13-18-31) return as the Tigers’ trio of dozen-goal scorers. Jubinville stood out as the league’s Player of the Year and a first-team All-American, but with Wilson and sophomore Mike Kramer (8-8-16) on the same line, it proved to be an Ottawa Senators’ Heatley-Alfredsson-Spezza pick-your-poison proposition.

Junior Mark Magnowsky (8-10-18) and sophomore Matt Arhontas (9-6-15) chipped in with some timely scoring as well, and the offense should have little trouble picking up its 31 shot-a-game barrage when it returns to the ice in late October.

Defense

This is where the Tigers could run into some trouble. Mike Moore (7-17-24) not only finished fourth on the team in scoring, but was such a force in his own end that he won the league’s Defensive Defenseman award at season’s end as well. A first-team All-American and team captain, he is a solitary but enormous departure from the Princeton locker room.

“I’m not sure if there’s anything to insure that [a Reid Cashman] situation doesn’t take place,” said coach Guy Gadowsky, referring to Quinnipiac’s marked leadership void when similarly acclaimed Cashman graduated two years ago. Last year’s group is “tough to replace,” he said.

“We can’t expect any one person to make up for Moore’s influence,” he concluded.

Four defensemen return after a 30-game campaign, including junior Jody Pederson (3-13-16) and sophomore Taylor Fedun (4-10-14). Sophomore Cam Ritchie (3-8-11) made good use of his two-dozen appearances, and Gadowsky made mention of newcomer Derrick Pallis out of Nobles Prep.

pri l jubinville 2008 09 Princeton Season Preview

Lee Jubinville is ECAC Hockey’s returning Player of the Year (photo: Tim Brule).

“You can immediately look at a defenseman like Pallis: he’s a left-handed shot like Moore, and sees the ice very well. You’ll notice him right away.”

Goaltending

Zane Kalemba carried the load for the Tigers last season, and while he didn’t put up Dryden-type numbers (2.38 goals-against, .916 save percentage), there’s no arguing with his .633 win percentage. The junior has senior Thomas Sychterz (SICK-tersh) and sophomore Alan Reynolds jostling for time as his backup.

Outlook

Princeton was picked for the peak for good reason: it’s nearly a complete unit, and the puck hasn’t even dropped on practice yet.

“Especially in the ECAC, [the target] means less,” dismissed Gadowsky, who brought his own evidence: “Last year the lowest [seed, Dartmouth] had a goal differential of negative-14. Other leagues are at minus-40, minus-50. Two years ago, 11th-place [Brown] was minus-four.”

I suppose that’s why they’re called predictions, and not declared results. The Stripes look good for no. 1.


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