SCHENECTADY – Eight games into the season, Union College’s men’s hockey team is still trying to find the right offensive line combination to score goals.
So far, the Dutch have only scored 16 goals, an average of two per game. Meanwhile, the opposition has scored 30 goals per game at an average of 3.75.
A more telling statistic is that the union has outnumbered 267-159. Dutch players have failed to reach 20 shots on goal four times in a game, including 15 in their 3-0 loss to the RPi at Houston Field House last Saturday.
Union head coach Rick Bennett will continue to find the right line combination as the Dutchman prepares to host Clarkson on Friday night and St. Lawrence at the Mesa rink on Saturday night. Both the matches will start at 7 pm
“I don’t think there is a simple formula,” Bennett said. “Do you think it’s going to play with the four lines that you think you have when you put in? [them] Feather [line] sheet, or do you find it in the game? We are trying to find it however we can find it, but also trying to find the solution through line combo that you have seen. Are We There Yet? no we do not. But at the same time, we have seen some hints from some of the lines that will be together.”
Union sophomore forward Liam Robertson is confident the team will find the right combination and start production more aggressively.
“Shipping them is a big deal right now, especially since we haven’t been together for so long, only really a month and a half,” Robertson said. “Once we find that faction, it should be pretty easy to keep going, keep it running, and have that chemistry with everyone in each line.”
Bennett has a simple solution to avoid losing confidence for the team.
“Opportunity,” said Bennett. “The opportunity is what they came here and there to get out there to play more, and we’re giving them [an] chance. So this is what you do with Opportunity. For me, it’s all about the opportunity.”
union injury update
Junior defenseman Dylan Enhorn, junior forward Owen Faris and junior forward Christian Sanda are still battling undisclosed injuries.
Bennett said Sanda could return to the lineup later this week. He hasn’t played since the October 22 game at Lake Superior State.
Bennett said Enhorn is week-to-week and Faris is month-to-month. Enhorn has been out since the October 9 game against New Hampshire. Farris hasn’t played any games yet.
The Golden Knights begin their ECACH season on Friday. They are 4-2-1 this season. They split a two-match home series against Michigan Tech last weekend, losing 3-0 and winning 2-1.
Graduate student defender Lucas Kebal led Clarkson to nine points on three goals and six assists. Graduate student forward Zach Tsekos is the Golden Knights’ top goal scorer with five.
Sophomore goalkeeper Ethan Hader is 4-2-1 against average with 1.87 goals and a .921 saving percentage.
Clarkson has won the last three meetings against Union and is 7–3 in the last 10.
Scouting ST. Lawrence
Defending ECACH tournament champion St. Lawrence has a 1-2-2 record. The Saints played at Lake Superior State last weekend, losing 2-2 on Friday and 7-1 on Saturday.
The Saints have eight players each with two points to lead the team. Senior goalkeeper Emil Zetterquist has a 1-1-2 record with a 1.45 GAA and a .951 save percentage.
Union won the last meeting between the teams, winning 5-4 at Appleton Arena on January 3, 2020. The Dutchman are 5-3-2 in their last 10 meetings with the Saints.
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