Players of the Week*

*These are my selections; ECAC Hockey’s can be found here.

Player of the Week: Brandon DeFazio, Clarkson

DeFazio led by example against SHU, scoring the hat trick – including a much-needed power-play goal and the game-winner – and adding an assist with a plus-3 rating in Clarkson’s rout. One of the Golden Knights’ assistant captains, the Oakville, Ontario native leads the team in goals (nine), assists (eight) and points (17) through 17 games.

Honorable mention: Jeremy Welsh, Union (3-2-5 vs. AIC and Army); Kelly Zajac, Union (1-4-5, +3); Chris Cahill, Yale (2-0-2, +1 vs. Vermont); Wayne Simpson, Union (0-5-5, +3); Derrick Pallis, Princeton (2-2-4, +5 vs. UML); Brodie Zuk, Princeton (0-4-4, +3); Chase Polacek, Rensselaer (1-2-3 vs. BU); Francois Brisebois, Colgate (2-1-3 vs. Niagara); Scott Freeman, Clarkson (1-2-3, +4); Nick Tremblay, Clarkson (1-2-3, +1); Kurtiss Bartliff, Colgate (0-3-3, +2); Adam Estoclet, Dartmouth (2-0-2 vs. Vermont); Nick Walsh, Dartmouth (2-0-2)

Rookie of the Week: Daniel Carr, Union

Carr appears in the RotW slot once more thanks to three goals and two assists on the weekend. Friday’s opener against AIC found the product of Sherwood Park, Alberta with two assists, including one on the advantage. Against Army on Saturday, Carr potted a PPG in each period for his seventh, eighth and ninth goals of his young Union career. He is currently second on the team in goals and points (19), but he leads all ECAC freshmen in overall goals and points.

Honorable mention: Mat Bodie, Union (1-5-6, +3); Andrew Ammon, Princeton (hat trick, +2 vs. UML Friday); Matt Farris, Princeton (2-1-3, +1 vs. UML Saturday)

Goalie of the Week: Ryan Rondeau, Yale

Rondeau claims the crown for the second week in a row by virtue of his second shutout in a row, this one a 32-save gem against Vermont in New Haven. His save percentage is up to .935 for the year – good for fourth in the nation – and the senior’s 1.70 goals-against average is third in the country (behind two other ECAC backstops, Princeton’s Sean Bonar and Dartmouth’s James Mello).

Honorable mention: Allen York, Rensselaer (28 saves on 29 shots vs. BU)

Trouble in paradise?

Some of you may have heard the news – or seen the photos – documenting Boardwalk Hall’s Sunday surface situation. The Albany Devils and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins had their neutral-site matinee scrapped by The Powers That Be due to “poor ice conditions”: Specifically, the ice was way too thin and ergo fragile. Potholes, cracks and a sheet that looked more like an Arctic ice-floe than a uniform surface led the game officials to nix the match, to the disappointment of at least a couple thousand fans.

Lest ye suffer from short term memory loss (and I wonder how that could’ve happened, by the way), Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City will play host to the ECAC Men’s Hockey Championship for at least the next three years. It’s an 81-year-old National Historic Landmark with a classic barrel-vault ceiling, it seats 10,500 for hockey and boasts the world’s largest musical instrument (a 33,000-pipe organ). The Hall has hosted numerous world-class and world-renowned events, but more topically, it currently hosts the Atlantic 10 basketball tournament and was home to the ECHL’s Boardwalk Bullies before they pulled up stakes and moved to central California.

At 81 years of age, is there cause for concern? I don’t think so. The edifice was overhauled fewer than 10 years ago by way of an award-winning $90 million renovation (yes, there are apparently awards for renovations). So what’s the explanation for last weekend’s snap, crackle and pop inside the boards?

Figure skating, of course. At least, that’s according to Boardwalk Hall general manager Greg Tesone, as quoted by the Albany Times-Union’s Pete Dougherty.

“We had a figure skating event here last night. We had to paint the ice white to paint over the top of the hockey lines so the lines weren’t visible.

“Our crew worked all night to cut the paint back out. You shave off ice until you to get back to the hockey ice. We shaved too much; the ice got too thin. Those were the areas that you saw broke off during warm-ups.

“At this point it’s going to take a while to get back to the thickness we need to play safely, and we just weren’t able to get there fast enough.”

I think it’s safe to say that four months should be enough time to enhance the sheet a bit; see y’all in the A.C.

My Top 20

Yale holds serve, North Dakota and New Hampshire out-impress Minn.-Duluth, BU continues its free-fall and Colorado College is back in the rankings.

1. Yale
2. North Dakota
3. New Hampshire
4. Minnesota-Duluth
5. Nebraska-Omaha
6. Boston College
7. Union
8. Notre Dame
9. Denver
10. Maine
11. Miami
12. Wisconsin
13. Michigan
14. Rensselaer
15. Boston University
16. Alaska
17. Ferris State
18. Clarkson
19. Merrimack
20. Colorado College