King of the Ivies
The Hockey Notebook
As usual, Sovit Funco leads off the notebook. The junior center was unanimously named the Ivy League Player of the Year this week by a vote of the league coaches.
Sophomore defenseman Randy Taylor was also a first-team selection.
Taylor's defensive partner, junior Mark Benning, was named to the second team, as was junior goalie Grant Blair.
Junior Tim Smith picked up honorable mention consideration.
The selection was the third first-team selection in three years for Fusco. The 1984 U.S. Olympian, who was on leave last year, tied for the Ivy scoring lead (23 points) with Yale's Bob Kudelski.
Taylor, who was second among Ivy blue-liners in scoring, earned his first Ivy consideration of any kind. It was tangible evidence that other coaches have not failed to notice that he has blossomed into the backbone of the Harvard defensive corps.
His selection was newcomer Benning's first honor since he was named Notre Dame's Freshman of the Year two years ago.
Blair who was Co-Ivy Player of the Year last season with Cornell's Duanna Moeser, look a back seat to Brown senior goalie John Franzona this season.
Cornell a Joe Nieuwendyk claimed Rookie of the Year honors, which went to Harvard's Butch Cutone last season Cutone has not out the entire season this year with a leg injury.
Moeser Princeton's Cliff Abrecht and Yale's Randy Wood rounded out the first team. The second squad included Kudelski, Nieuwendyk, Yale's Bob Logan and Peter Sawkins, and Cornell Steve Inglehart.
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The ECAC will announce its Player of the Year, Rookie of the Year, and first and second teams today at a news conference at the Boston Garden.
The battle for Player of the Year will be between Fusco and RPI's Adam Oates, who last the conference scoring little to the Burlington, Mass., native in the final weekend of the season.
Oates may be the finest passer in college Hockey and his 20-1 team won the ECAC regular season title. Fusco, on the other hand, has no weaknesses in his game and no squad owes more to a single player that the second-place Crimson does to him.
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Apart from Fusco and his first-line cohorts the rest of the Crimson has also been playing well recently.
The second line has continued to generate excellent offensive chances and to forecheck well. Right wing Tim Barakett reinjured his shoulder last weekend and has been unable to practice this week, but he will be ready to go when the horn sounds Friday night at the Garden.
The third line, which has had the most trouble scoring over the course of the year, has also started to get some chances. Saturday night, Andy Janfaza notched a pair against Colgate on the the power play, and Nick Carone came within inches of getting his first goal of the season.
As Janfaza pointed out after the game, the second, third and fourth lines have been playing even with everyone all year, which allows the headliners to score the goals that win the games.
The fourth line has enjoyed success all season, as the Peter Follows-Rick Haney-Stey Armstrong combination has clicked from day one.
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After three years, the two-seeded quarterfinal series has produced no upset winners.
All four of the higher seeded cams won their quarterfinal games this year, with RPI, Harvard, Clarkson and Cornell claiming boths in the semis.
Clarkson alone did not win in two straight, allowing St. Lawrence to tie up the second game with two last-minute goals.
Only one home team however lost a quarterfinal series--Harvard last year to Clarkson.
The Golden Knights had a better regular-season record, however--Harvard only had the home-ice advantage because the Crimson won the Ivy Region and thus was entitled under the old three-region system to host the quarterfinal.
Therefore, no team with a lower regular-season standing has ever upset a team with a better regular-season record.
In three years, there have been three 10-minute mini-games, which are played after the two teams have split the regular games, but each time the home team but claimed the tie-breaking contest.
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Harvard is in good shops to care an NCAA bid if it defense. Clarkson in tomorrow's 6:5 p.m. contest.
As long as RPI beats Cornell in the second game (9:15 p.m. scheduled start), then the Crimson, by virtue of finishing second in the regular season and second in the tournament, would be the natural second selection from the ECAC.
However, if Cornell beats RPI in the semis, then the Crimson would have to beat the Big Red Saturday to ensure itself of the other berth.
RPI will be chosen by the NCAA committee regardless of how it finishes in the tournament.
If Harvard beats RPI in the championship game, then the iceman would get the automatic berth that goes to the tournament champion.
If the Crimson finishes second, the icemen appear bound for Lansing Mich., for a quarterfinal series against Michigan State, or to Duluth, to face the University of Minnesota at Duluth.
Outside chances have the Crimson going to Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., to face Lake Superior State or to Minneapolis to play the Golden Gophers of Minnesota.
Michigan State, of course, was the team the Crimson beat at Bright two years ago to advance to the Final four in Grand Forks, N.D.
This year the Final Four will be held in the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit.
The NCAA quarterfinals are two-game total goals series, meaning the two contests are just one long 120-minute game.
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More on the ECAC Tournament.
Ticket sales for the tourney are not particularly high so far, and it's no wonder, with three upstate New York teams and Harvard, a notoriously poor draw.
With the way the Hockey East and ECAC tournaments have worked out, it seems logical to expect Hockey East to move into the Garden next year and see the ECAC move its event to Lake Placid, which is closer to most of the conference's contending schools.
Except, of course, Harvard.
THE NOTEBOOK'S NOTEBOOK: Fusco's five points in Saturday's contest upped his season total to 78, just 11 sky of the Harvard single-season record set by Crimson Coach Bill Cleary... With five major penaltie, the penalty-minute total for Saturday's game was 61, edging our Friday's 58, for a two-game series total of 119... Bright did not sell out either night, drawing 2650 (200 short of capacity) on Saturday... Apologies to statistician Ted Cadwell, whose name was misspelled in Monday's Crimson.
The Hockey Notebook Appears Every Thursday in The Harvard Crimson
All-Ivy Squash Selections
Rusty Ball, Harvard
Julian Benello, Yale
David Boyum, Harvard
Will Carlin, Yale
Luke Evnin, Princeton
Christian Griffin, Princeton
Kenton Jernigan, Harvard
Hugh LaBossier, Yale
David Proctor, Penn
Fazal Sheikh, Princeton
Player of the Year:
Rookie of the Year:
Ingrid Boyum, Harvard
Sue Cutler, Brown
Diana Edge, Harvard
Mary Hulbert, Harvard
Karen Kelso, Penn
Jennifer Meagher, Brown
Anita Nador, Yale
Sophie Porter, Princeton
Diana Staley, Harvard
Annie Yates, Princeton
Jernigan, a junior, is a third-line Player of the Year pick. This year marks Boyum's and Hulbert's fourth appearances on the All-Ivy squad and Staley's second.