AMHERST, Massachusetts -- Amherst men's ice hockey will host archrival Williams on the newly renovated Orr Rink this Saturday, December 6 at 3:00pm. The schools will kick off Little III competition for the 1997-98 season after Amherst claimed last year's trivalry crown, its first since the 1989-90 season.
Both teams enter the match with 3-1 records after falling in Championship games of Thanksgiving weekend tournaments. Hosting the Ben McCabe Tourney, Amherst claimed a 3-1 victory over Connecticut College before falling 3-2 to Trinity in the title game. Williams, meanwhile, squeaked by Salem State after trailing 4-2 late in the second toward a 5-4 victory and a showdown with Elmira for the Bowdoin Thanksgiving Invitational crown. The Ephs again rallied in the third period to force overtime, where Williams fell 5-4.
The two squads also boast 2-0 records in the ECAC-East as two of five schools yet to drop a league game. Amherst roared out to a 10-1 advantage in its opening games at St. Anselm and New England College, while Williams posted a 5-3 victory over Bowdoin and a 3-0 blanking of defending ECAC-East Champion Colby.
Offensively Amherst is powered by senior co-captain Mike Noone (Swampscott, MA) and rookie Chris Orszulak (Longmeadow, MA), both with six points early in the season (4g, 2a and 1g, 5a respectively. Junior Chris Addesa (Andover, MA) minds the net with 95.2% efficiency, as he has allowed only five goals in four games (1.25 GAA).
Williams, meanwhile, looks to junior Jeff Russell (Arlington, MA) to feed David Carrillo (Los Angeles, CA) and Jon Collins (Saugus, MA) at the goalmouth. Russell leads the Ephs with seven points on a goal and six assists, while his fellow forwards notch four goals and an assist each. Sophomore Dave Haimson (St. Laurent, PQ) has played all 246 minutes in goal for the Ephs.
Both teams must earn victories on Friday night before bragging rights can be claimed in a battle of the unbeatens. Williams will travel to the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (formerly North Adams State), currently 0-3 (0-2 ECAC-East) on the season, while Amherst hosts 1-1-1 Hamilton (1-0-1 ECAC-East) at 7:00pm.
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