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Hockey notes: Thrust into No. 1 role, Diebold playing the part

Friday, November 15, 2013
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Whenever he has talked about goalie Scott Diebold, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute coach Seth Appert has consistently said that Diebold was recruited to be a No. 1 goalie for the Engineers.

With sophomore Jason Kasdorf out for the season with a dislocated right shoulder, Diebold’s time to be the No. 1 goalie is now.

Diebold has been solid for the 10th-ranked Engineers, who face Route 7-rival Union in a home-and-home ECAC Hockey series this weekend. The junior netminder has started the last eight games since Kasdorf went down with his injury and has a 5-1-2 record with a 1.78 goals-against average and a .933 save percentage.

Two years ago, Diebold played in 10 games and was 2-5-1 with a 3.22 GAA and an .897 save percentage. Last year, he played in seven games and was 2-4-1 with a 3.22 GAA and an .873 save percentage. Diebold didn’t play again after a Jan. 5 start at New Hampshire.

“We probably brought him in a year later with Allen York leaving early,” Appert said. “[It] made the freshman year more challenging on a team that wasn’t that good. He had some great moments that year, but he wasn’t consistent with them.

“I thought that last year, he was ready. He had a great summer, and he was ready to be our No. 1. He showed it a little bit early, and then he stubbed his toe. This is where Jason took over, and he put a stranglehold on it. He never let Scotty get back in there.”

Diebold allowed four goals in starts against Union Nov. 2 and Dartmouth a week later. The Engineers lost both games. He hasn’t looked back at those games.

“What I’ve been focusing on this year is every game is just a game,” Diebold said. “I take it one game at a time, one period at a time. Just making the next save.”

Now that he is playing more consistently, Diebold is gaining more confidence.

“You start to get more games, you feel more comfortable in the net,” said Diebold, a Buffalo native. “It’s easier to start tracking pucks and things like that.”

Appert doesn’t believe Diebold is doing much different than he had been doing the past two seasons. Continuing to work hard in practice when he knew he wasn’t going to play has not gone unnoticed.

“He comes to work,” Appert said. “He’s a great example for any guy on our team who is struggling with his ice time, who isn’t getting to play as much. Scotty Diebold came to practice every day last year, and he competed his tail off and he worked to get better. People left him for dead and said he wasn’t going to play again and Jason is going to play every minute.

“It’s crazy how things worked out.”

REGRETS COMMENT

Union senior right winger Kevin Sullivan is day-to-day with an upper-body injury that he suffered in the Nov. 2 game at Harvard. Sullivan, who is tied for second in the country with 11 assists, didn’t play last weekend.

However, Union coach Rick Bennett was very upset with Sullivan on how he was rehabbing the injury.

“I’ll say this,” Bennett said, “you want your players to treat their injuries and to come across and do everything you possibly can to get back to help your teammates, and I don’t feel that with Kevin Sullivan right now.”

After practice Wednesday, Bennett said he regretted what he said.

“Kevin’s been great,” Bennett said. “I think that was a coach who made a wrong decision on my part by saying something like that. Live and learn on my part.

“Kevin knows exactly where I stand. We had a nice talk, so that’s behind us.”

NO HAT TRICK

Colgate right winger Darcy Murphy was credited with a hat trick in last Friday’s 5-3 Raiders’ win over Union at Messa Rink. The third goal came on an empty-net tally with under 20 seconds left in the game. Everyone surrounded Murphy near the penalty box, and a Colgate fan threw a hat on the ice.

Turns out that Murphy didn’t score the empty-netter. On Saturday, the goal was changed to Tylor Spink, which gave him two on the night. Murphy was given an assist.

That means Quinnipiac’s Bryan Leitch remains the last visiting player to score a hat trick at Union. Leitch did it Nov. 14, 2008, in a 6-3 Quinnipiac win.

STONE HONORED

The NCAA announced its 2014 Silver Anniversary Award winners this week, and Harvard women’s hockey coach Katey Stone is one of the recipients.

Stone was a four-year letter winner in lacrosse and hockey at University of New Hampshire. She was a member of the 1985 national championship team in lacrosse, a two-time All-American and team captain in 1989. In hockey, Stone was the captain in 1988-89, and was a member of back-to-back ECAC championship teams in 1986 and 1987.

Stone, who has a 402-171-35 career record, is on leave from Harvard this season because she is coaching the U.S. Olympic women’s team.

The Silver Anniversary Award annually recognizes distinguished individuals on the 25th anniversary of the conclusion of their college athletics careers.

WOMEN’S FIGHT NIGHT

Bemidji State edged Ohio State, 3-2, in a WCHA women’s game last Friday. But that was overshadowed by what happened at the end of the game.

At the final buzzer, a bench-clearing brawl broke out. Watching a video on YouTube, it didn’t seem to last very long.

However, 287 of the game’s 303 penalty minutes were handed out. Ten Ohio State players and nine Bemidji State players were given game disqualifications for fighting, and the Buckeyes’ Madison Marcotte was disqualified for facemasking.

“All I know is there were players taking liberties with our players,” Ohio State coach Nate Handrahan said. “There was some chippiness throughout the course of the game. I’ve got to believe that our players, and as a staff, as a program, we’re not happy with teams celebrating on our ice surface and going off the ice yipping and hooting and hollering. What happened at the end of the game doesn’t happen often in women’s hockey. But I can tell you this — we’re happy to at least see our girls show some fight and some spirit.”

The teams had just 10 skaters each for Saturday’s rematch, which ended in a 2-2 tie. No one could complain about not having enough ice time.

LOCAL UPDATE

Here’s a look at how college hockey players from the Capital Region did over the past week.

Union junior goalie Colin Stevens (Niskayuna) stopped 25 shots in last Friday’s 5-3 loss to Colgate. The next night, Stevens made 11 saves to earn his first shutout of the season in a 3-0 victory over Cornell.

Boston University sophomore forward Jordan Juron (Latham) scored a goal in the Terriers’ 5-1 win over Maine last Saturday. In Sunday’s 4-2 victory over the Black Bears, she scored the game’s first goal.

 
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