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Who says important things don't happen during Reading Period? Harvard hockey faces yet another challenge tonight when red-hot Clarkson rolls into town from Potsdam, N.Y.
The Golden Knights are currently in second place in the ECAC with an 8-2 record, including victories in the North County Tournament and, more recently, the Syracuse Invitational. In addition, Clarkson is rated number eight in the nation.
Last season the Knights finished first in the Division One standings with a 19-4 record, and this year appear to have picked up where they left off. But that 8-2 slate may be misleading: seven of Clarkson's eight wins have come against "rebuilding clubs" (i.e. Colgate, RPI, St. Lawrence) and the other was an impressive 9-5 triumph over Boston College on December 3.
Gone from last season's dynamo are a pair of all-Americans, goalie Brian Shields and now-Los Angeles Kings center Dave Taylor, but nearly everyone else has returned. Among the standouts on this year's squad are forwards Kevin Zappia, the leading scorer in the ECAC, and Marty McNally, as well as all-American defenseman Bill Blackwood.
Shield's place in the nets has gone to freshman Ken Moore from Acton, Ma. Moore currently sports a 4.2 goals-against average and will be the fourth first-year goaltender to play at Watson Rink this year.
As for Harvard, trying to improve on its current 6-3 ECAC slate, freshman forward Bobby McDonald is out for two to three weeks with a dislocated elbow suffered in the St. Lawrence game. In the nets, tonight could mark the home debut of sophomore Brian Murphy.
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