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Canisius hockey opens season against Robert Morris


The Canisius hockey team opens the 2017-18 regular season this weekend when it welcomes Robert Morris to HARBORCENTER for a two-game Atlantic Hockey Conference series.
Opening faceoff for both contests is set for 7:35 p.m. The Golden Griffins will recognize their 2016-17 AHC regular season championship with a banner unveiling ceremony prior to the start of Friday's contest.
The first 1,000 fans in attendance for Friday's opener will receive a replica championship banner.
Scouting the Griffs

  • Canisius welcomes back 24 letterwinners from its 2016-17 squad that posted a 21-11-7 overall record and an 18-4-6 mark in league play to claim the program's first AHC regular season title.
  • One of the most experienced lineups in the nation, Canisius returns its top nine point producers from a season ago. Junior Dylan McLaughlin paced the squad with 33 points (14g, 19a) on his way to earning All-AHC Third Team accolades.
  • Senior Ryan Schmelzer will wear the captain's "C" for the Griffs this season after serving as alternate captain last season. Schmelzer finished second on the squad last season with 30 points (12g, 18a) on his way to earning All-AHC Second Team and AHC Top Defensive Forward accolades.
  • All-AHC Second Team and Co-Best Defenseman of the Year junior Cameron Heath returns after leading Canisius blueliners in goals (7) and points (18) while ranking second among Griffs defensemen in assists (11). He was part of a Canisius defense that ranked in the top 10 nationally in penalty kill (87.2/3rd), scoring defense (2.18/5th) and goals against (85/6th). 
Canisius Edged by Ryerson in Exhibition Contest
  • Senior Ryan Schmelzer scored both Canisius goals, but Ryerson took advantage of two power play tallies to defeat the Golden Griffins, 3-2, in a collegiate hockey exhibition contest Oct. 6 at KeyBank Rink in HARBORCENTER.
  • Marcus Hinds netted the eventual game-winning goal early in the third while Gregory Di Tomaso and Steven Harland added man-advantage tallies for the Rams.
  • Mario Culina recorded 36 saves between the pipes for Ryerson, highlighted by a game-high 17 saves during the third period as Canisius out-shot the Rams by a 38-20 margin.
  • Sophomore Daniel Urbani got the start in goal for Canisius and played the first period, recording six saves. Sophomore Blake Weyrick played the second period and made eight stops. Junior Simon Hofley was in net for the Griffs in the third period, recording three saves.
  • Junior Dylan McLaughlin dished out two assists while fellow junior Felix Chamberland also picked up a helper.
Scouting Robert Morris
  • Picked to finish second in the Atlantic Hockey Conference preseason coaches poll, the Colonials (0-1-0, 0-1-0 AHC) complete a season-opening road swing this weekend that began last Friday with a 4-3 overtime loss at Niagara.
  • Senior Brady Ferguson is back for his senior season after pacing the league in scoring (24g, 34a) during his junior season. Ferguson, who entered the 2017-18 campaign as the active leader in career points with 118 (40g, 70a), tallied two goals and an assist in the season opener versus the Purple Eagles.
  • Junior Alex Tonge is the Colonials second leading returning scorer as he tallied 49 points (14g, 35a) during the 2016-17 season. Tonge accounted for the third RMU goal in the season-opening matchup with the Purple Eagles.
  • Sophomore Francis Marotte looks to build off a solid freshman campaign that saw him earn AHC All-Rookie Team honors last season. Marotte fashioned a .931 save percentage and a 2.08 goals against average in 29 appearances in 2016-17.
Canisius-Robert Morris Series Notes
  • In 27 all-time meetings between the two schools, Robert Morris holds a 16-8-3 advantage.
  • The Colonials hold a slight edge in recent matchups, posting a 4-2-1 record in the last seven meetings dating back to the start of the 2015-16 season.
  • Canisius took three out of four points from Robert Morris in their lone 2016-17 regular season series last October at HARBORCENTER. The Griffs won the series opener, 6-3, behind a hat trick from Felix Chamberland before the two sides played to a 2-2 draw the following evening.
  • The Colonials defeated Canisius in their third matchup of the 2016-17 campaign, recording a 6-2 triumph in an AHC Tournament semifinal matchup at Blue Cross Arena in Rochester last March. 
Large is in Charge
  • The series against Robert Morris marks the official debut of new head coach Trevor Largewho was named the seventh coach in Canisius Hockey history on April 28. 
  • A member of the Canisius coaching staff for the past three seasons and an 11-year coaching veteran in Atlantic Hockey, Large has been instrumental in the Golden Griffins ascension within the Atlantic Hockey Conference, helping guide the squad to two appearances in the AHC Tournament semifinals as well as the program's first regular season title in 2016-17.
  • Individually, Canisius has thrived over the past three seasons, with eight players earning a total of nine all-conference accolades. Large was influential in the arrival of graduate transfer Charles Williams, who became the program's first All-American selection and the school's first finalist for both the Hobey Baker and Mike Ritcher Awards during the 2016-17 campaign.
 Up Next
  • Canisius continues its season-opening homestand Oct. 21 when it faces off against ECAC Hockey foe Colgate in a 7:35 puckdrop in HARBORCENTER.
  • Canisius will "pink-out" KeyBank Rink in HARBORCENTER in support of the American Cancer Society's Real Men Wear Pink campaign.
  • Anyone who makes a donation of $100 or more to Large's campaign will receive four tickets to the Oct. 21 contest against the Raiders. To support to Large's Real Men Wear Pink fundraising campaign, click here.
  • Additionally, any fans who purchase tickets for the Canisius vs. Colgate hockey game on Oct. 21 through this link will have $3 of each ticket purchase donated to the American Cancer Society.