ECAC Hockey team preview: Yale (with video)
In the final installment of my look at the other ECAC Hockey teams, here is my preview of NCAA champion-Yale.
Coach: Keith Allain (eighth season, 86-55-13).
2012-13 record: 22-12-3 (12-9-1 ECACH).
Key returning players:Senior forwards Kenny Agostino (17-24-41) and Jesse Root (12-11-23), junior defenseman Tommy Fallen (7-16-23) and sophomore defenseman Ryan Obuchowski (3-9-12).
New players: Forwards Tim Bonner, Frankie DiChara, Mike Doherty, John Hayden and Chris Izmirlian; defenseman Dan O’Keefe; goalies Alex Lyon and Patrick Spano.
Outlook: Let’s see here. The Bulldogs didn’t win the ECAC regular-season title, and they looked awful in the ECACH tournament final four. But they still won the NCAA title, the first ECACH team to do so since Harvard in 1989. They got hot at the right time. Can they do it again? The talent is there in Agostino and Root (the Pittsburgh native, which we will never forget thanks to ESPN broadcaster and Pittsburgh native John Buccigross), and Fallen and Obuchowski on defense. The big question is who replaces Jeff Malcolm in goal. Freshmen Lyon and Spano and junior Connor Wilson will battle for playing time. That will decide whether or not the Bulldogs get a chance to defend their NCAA title.
Predicted finish: Coaches: first. Media: second. Me: second.
To see a video interview with Allain, click here.