ROCHESTER INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY
2011-12 Record: 20-13-6 Overall, 14-7-6 Atlantic Hockey Association
Key Returnees: Michael Colavecchia, Forward, Sr. (39GP, 14-18-32), Matt Garbowsky, Forward, So. (39GP, 9-11-20), Chris Saracino, Defenseman, Senior (14GP, 2-7-9)
Key Departures: Cameron Burt, Forward (38GP, 8-23-31), Chris Haltigin, Defenseman (39GP, 5-16-21), Shane Madolora, Goaltender (32GP, 18-9-5 record, 1.92 GAA, .931 sv %)
RIT burst on to the scene in 2009-10 with their Cinderella run to the Frozen Four in Detroit, where they lost in the semifinal to Wisconsin, 6-0. Despite the less than memorable game, everyone remembers the impression their fans left. Several commented how their enthusiasm throughout the game reminded them of Michigan fans in the 90s. Hopefully they get a good turnout at Yost Ice Arena because it could be a really fun battle between the RIT fans and Michigan student section.
The Tigers tied for third place in the Atlantic Hockey Association last season and are coming off a runner-up finish in the AHA tournament. They lose seven seniors from last year’s team that all started at least 32 games, including two of their three top scorers in Cameron Burt and Chris Haltigin. They also lose their starting goaltender for the past two seasons, Shane Madolora, who put up fantastic numbers with a 1.92 GAA, .931 save percentage, and seven shutouts.
Junior forward Michael Colavecchia is the Tigers’ top returning scorer after posting 14-18-32 to lead team last season. He was the only player to post more than 10 goals. Sophomores forwards Matt Garbowsky and Brad McGowen each netted nine goals in their rookie season, and senior forward Bryan Potts only saw action in seven games last season but managed to post 4-1-5 in that time. The defense is anchored by senior captain Chris Saracino, who had nine points in 14 games last season.
In goal, junior Josh Watson got the starting nod in the Tigers 8-1 exhibition win over Ottawa. He gave up one goal on 12 shots in half a game’s work. Last season Watson saw action in three games and went 1-1-1 with a 1.62 GAA and .940 save percentage. I expect to see him get the starting nod again tonight against Michigan. Freshman netminder Ken MacLean played the back half of the exhibition game and stopped all ten shots he faced.
Other key stat from the exhibition game: RIT went 4-for-8 on the power play.
The Tigers lost a solid senior class and are looking for their youngsters to step up this season. Watson hasn’t seen much action in goal, but if the stats from his three starts last season are any indication, he’s going to be the key to their success against Michigan.