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Dutchman
02-17-2019, 05:50 AM
This has been an interesting team. 2 years ago I circled this year as our year to contend, win the league, and make an NCAA run. Last year was a pleasant surprise and I believe they overachieved. They didn't lose much and I figured they should be as successful or likely better this year. But that hasn't happened. And it's very strange to me.
I think that is how a lot of us feel. Two years ago a lot of us were circling this year. This was the year we would have talent and experience to make a run. Sometimes I look at a game and say to myself "That does not look like a Rick Bennett team". At other times, like against Q'pac, where we blocked 25 shots, it does. I can't figure it out.

Pokey
02-17-2019, 11:30 AM
This has been an interesting team. 2 years ago I circled this year as our year to contend, win the league, and make an NCAA run. Last year was a pleasant surprise and I believe they overachieved. They didn't lose much and I figured they should be as successful or likely better this year. But that hasn't happened. And it's very strange to me. Like Dutchmen said I'm not sure how much we have improved throughout the year, compared to the other teams. We seem to have effort and I think in most games we can play 5v5 with anyone. But our special teams stinks and it seems we lack a true finisher like Vecchione, S Foo, Jooris, Carr, etc. I think we get the puck to good positions sometimes, but nobody has the belief to shoot it and when the puck does make it to real scoring positions nobody can actually put the puck in the net. Some of that I believe is a bit lower top end scoring then we have had in the past and some of that may just be poor luck. But either way we need to stop missing the net/putting it in the goalies chest when we have good opportunities if we want to move forward this year.

On the bright side, I think at our best we can play a hockey game from end to end with most teams in the country. Atleast as far as scoring chances and puck possession (again finishing chances is a downfall). Look at the @Harvard game. I think we outplayed them 5v5 (out scored them 3-0 too). I think for most of the game we deserved a win. But we took 4 penalties and had 4 terrible kills (credit their PP also). 8 (or less) bad minutes cost us an otherwise fairly strong 52 minutes. And such seems to be the same for many of our games. RPI at times union, quinnipiac two nights ago, the list goes on: Decent puck control, some good scoring chances but yet no one can finish with any consistency and we give up a few good chances to other teams due to occasional breakdowns and they always seem to finish.

It's a frustrating team. And I think some pieces are there. Just look at plenty of our wins vs good teams. I'm cautiously optimistic that when the games start to count in the playoffs that we can play with anyone. I hope we can be last years Princeton and put everything together at the right time. I believe we can be. I just hope they either get the luck or confidence to start finishing their chances.

And lastly, as far as some folks saying they blame the coaches for not getting this team straightened out, I believe this team would be worse without the strong coaching we have. I think we are extremely lucky to have the staff we have and I have a lot of trust in the recruiting and coaching. I think we are lucky to have this staff and they are always focused on being on being as good as they can be at the end of the year even if that means some occasional bumps in the road along the way. I believe Rick and Jason in particular could be coaching at a lot of different schools or organizations if they wanted to and they are part of the reason Union has maintained such a high level of play after their championship and we are lucky to have them.


Don't disagree with anything except some of the "and Lastly" part..
Strong coaching is a good thing Stubborn Coaching is NOT !!
A non flexible coach can inflict more harm than good..
Penalty Kill - One style - pack it in - think the other team doesn't know its what they are gonna do?? Just let them stand there and fire away - the penalty killing forwards can take a few dozen
more point blank slap shots per game
Power Play - Doesn't work hasn't worked and changes are minimal.. 1 man in front and 4 guys too far away with bad passing and puck control issues - YUP I'm sure it will come around

kdt34wqx
02-18-2019, 05:16 PM
Vas Kolias is the best player on Union (not counting Hanson). He's smart , fun to watch and always around the puck. Hanson is on track to become one of Union's "greatest ever." We still need production. The Union "power play" needs to start playing "underneath" instead of just looking for perimeter shots. We do fine "five-on-five". If we want to get to Lake Placid (and beyond) Union needs to improve its power play.

Dutchman
02-22-2019, 03:51 PM
I hope we don't look past Colgate to Cornell.

YouSeeAlum
02-22-2019, 07:54 PM
We did. Two loss weekend. The Dutch are an enigma wrapped in stick tape. Coaching issues imho.

jstadts
02-22-2019, 09:18 PM
looks like you got out goal tended tonight.

YouSeeAlum
02-23-2019, 09:08 PM
Another dud for UC. I hope they are at least respectable in the ECAC Playoffs.

ecachawkeyfan
02-24-2019, 01:40 PM
Some thoughts on Union after a lost weekend:

If people think this year hasn't been great, I think the next few are likely to be even worse. Unlike last year, Union's losing quite a bit after this year. They're losing a large senior class that currently includes five of their top 6 scorers. They're losing one of their better defenseman in Greg Campbell, though he wouldn't be classified as such on Union's better teams.

The recruiting pipeline has taken multiple hits. Mike Hardman, perhaps their top recruit, bailed and went to BC. Ben Thomas isn't coming. Vilho Saariluoma de-committed and is going to Bentley. Thomas Lancombe committed in November but then was playing in major juniors a month later, wiping out his NCAA eligibility.

Union hasn't been able to bring in top-end talent in a few years. The last true impact, top of the league player who came in was probably Spencer Foo in 2014. That's five years ago now. Players like Maier, Supinski and Vidmar are good but they aren't game-changers the way Foo, Vecchione, Ciampini, Carr and other offensive guys were in the past. When they came on campus, NHL draftees Jack Adams and Parker Foo seemed like candidates to become top of the league kind of talents. Neither have shown that promise almost halfway through their college careers. Adams led the USHL in goals his last year there. After watching for almost two years, I can't see how.

Kupsky has been largely a bust. With his big NAHL playoff campaign in 2014-15, and then getting drafted, he seemed like potentially Union's next great goalie after Kinkaid, Grosenick and Stevens. Instead, he lost his job in his senior year and could finish his career with a save percentage below 90% in three of the four years.

The defensive corps have fallen quite a bit. Forget Bodie and Ghost. Outside of maybe Kolias, Union has largely struggled to bring in guys like Jeff Taylor and Nick DeSimone the last few years. Most of the current D corps are below rock solid guys from past like Julseth-White, Stuart, Coburn, Matheson.

Facility wise, the program has fallen farther behind. Colgate has a new rink. Clarkson's putting money into Cheel. St. Lawrence is putting $17M into Appleton, a greater sum than Union wants to put into Messa Rink. Let's face it - while Messa has its charms, the facility is woefully inadequate for two Division I teams. Recruits and their families undoubtedly notice this. There has been very little publicaly said about the renovation since a video was put out 15 months ago that lacked much in the way of what might be done.

The program hasn't sustained momentum from the national championship. Barring a miracle, they'll miss the NCAA tournament for the fourth time in five years since the national title. And the one time they did make it, they gave up 10 goals. While you can't expect national titles every year, especially at an ECAC school, you'd have liked to see the program go more than 1-for-5 in return trips to the dance to follow up 2014. The national title didn't do much to sustain or even boost the program.

Though this year probably dinged his resume some, it might be a good time for Bennett to move on if someone comes calling. The program seems likely to struggle for a few years, at least.

Dutchman
02-24-2019, 05:46 PM
Some thoughts on Union after a lost weekend:

If people think this year hasn't been great, I think the next few are likely to be even worse. Unlike last year, Union's losing quite a bit after this year. They're losing a large senior class that currently includes five of their top 6 scorers. They're losing one of their better defenseman in Greg Campbell, though he wouldn't be classified as such on Union's better teams.

The recruiting pipeline has taken multiple hits. Mike Hardman, perhaps their top recruit, bailed and went to BC. Ben Thomas isn't coming. Vilho Saariluoma de-committed and is going to Bentley. Thomas Lancombe committed in November but then was playing in major juniors a month later, wiping out his NCAA eligibility.

Union hasn't been able to bring in top-end talent in a few years. The last true impact, top of the league player who came in was probably Spencer Foo in 2014. That's five years ago now. Players like Maier, Supinski and Vidmar are good but they aren't game-changers the way Foo, Vecchione, Ciampini, Carr and other offensive guys were in the past. When they came on campus, NHL draftees Jack Adams and Parker Foo seemed like candidates to become top of the league kind of talents. Neither have shown that promise almost halfway through their college careers. Adams led the USHL in goals his last year there. After watching for almost two years, I can't see how.

Kupsky has been largely a bust. With his big NAHL playoff campaign in 2014-15, and then getting drafted, he seemed like potentially Union's next great goalie after Kinkaid, Grosenick and Stevens. Instead, he lost his job in his senior year and could finish his career with a save percentage below 90% in three of the four years.

The defensive corps have fallen quite a bit. Forget Bodie and Ghost. Outside of maybe Kolias, Union has largely struggled to bring in guys like Jeff Taylor and Nick DeSimone the last few years. Most of the current D corps are below rock solid guys from past like Julseth-White, Stuart, Coburn, Matheson.

Facility wise, the program has fallen farther behind. Colgate has a new rink. Clarkson's putting money into Cheel. St. Lawrence is putting $17M into Appleton, a greater sum than Union wants to put into Messa Rink. Let's face it - while Messa has its charms, the facility is woefully inadequate for two Division I teams. Recruits and their families undoubtedly notice this. There has been very little publicly said about the renovation since a video was put out 15 months ago that lacked much in the way of what might be done.

The program hasn't sustained momentum from the national championship. Barring a miracle, they'll miss the NCAA tournament for the fourth time in five years since the national title. And the one time they did make it, they gave up 10 goals. While you can't expect national titles every year, especially at an ECAC school, you'd have liked to see the program go more than 1-for-5 in return trips to the dance to follow up 2014. The national title didn't do much to sustain or even boost the program.

Though this year probably dinged his resume some, it might be a good time for Bennett to move on if someone comes calling. The program seems likely to struggle for a few years, at least.

Agree with everything you have said. Our NCAA Championship never translated into recruiting success. Going forward if we can make it to .500 over each of the next three years and at the same time rebuild, I would consider that a great success !! We are in for some very hard times. Looking at the huge whole to fill with this years senior class and the terrible prospects for the next few years, I would not be surprised to see Bennett leave. We have no sustainable competitive advantage.

Union27
02-24-2019, 06:12 PM
I still believe this team is capable of making a run in the post season.
They need to get back on track next weekend with a couple of wins. Home ice in the first round will be a huge plus. The question is who will step up come playoff time.......

ecachawkeyfan
02-25-2019, 11:04 AM
A former Union standout is on the move.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="und" dir="ltr">��<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/CBJ?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#CBJ</a> <a href="https://t.co/9RVtyUKyAe">pic.twitter.com/9RVtyUKyAe</a></p>&mdash; Columbus Blue Jackets (@BlueJacketsNHL) <a href="https://twitter.com/BlueJacketsNHL/status/1100041114516709376?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">February 25, 2019</a></blockquote>
<script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>

UnionFan4Life
02-26-2019, 06:06 PM
Some thoughts on Union after a lost weekend:

If people think this year hasn't been great, I think the next few are likely to be even worse. Unlike last year, Union's losing quite a bit after this year. They're losing a large senior class that currently includes five of their top 6 scorers. They're losing one of their better defenseman in Greg Campbell, though he wouldn't be classified as such on Union's better teams.

The recruiting pipeline has taken multiple hits. Mike Hardman, perhaps their top recruit, bailed and went to BC. Ben Thomas isn't coming. Vilho Saariluoma de-committed and is going to Bentley. Thomas Lancombe committed in November but then was playing in major juniors a month later, wiping out his NCAA eligibility.

Union hasn't been able to bring in top-end talent in a few years. The last true impact, top of the league player who came in was probably Spencer Foo in 2014. That's five years ago now. Players like Maier, Supinski and Vidmar are good but they aren't game-changers the way Foo, Vecchione, Ciampini, Carr and other offensive guys were in the past. When they came on campus, NHL draftees Jack Adams and Parker Foo seemed like candidates to become top of the league kind of talents. Neither have shown that promise almost halfway through their college careers. Adams led the USHL in goals his last year there. After watching for almost two years, I can't see how.

Kupsky has been largely a bust. With his big NAHL playoff campaign in 2014-15, and then getting drafted, he seemed like potentially Union's next great goalie after Kinkaid, Grosenick and Stevens. Instead, he lost his job in his senior year and could finish his career with a save percentage below 90% in three of the four years.

The defensive corps have fallen quite a bit. Forget Bodie and Ghost. Outside of maybe Kolias, Union has largely struggled to bring in guys like Jeff Taylor and Nick DeSimone the last few years. Most of the current D corps are below rock solid guys from past like Julseth-White, Stuart, Coburn, Matheson.

Facility wise, the program has fallen farther behind. Colgate has a new rink. Clarkson's putting money into Cheel. St. Lawrence is putting $17M into Appleton, a greater sum than Union wants to put into Messa Rink. Let's face it - while Messa has its charms, the facility is woefully inadequate for two Division I teams. Recruits and their families undoubtedly notice this. There has been very little publicaly said about the renovation since a video was put out 15 months ago that lacked much in the way of what might be done.

The program hasn't sustained momentum from the national championship. Barring a miracle, they'll miss the NCAA tournament for the fourth time in five years since the national title. And the one time they did make it, they gave up 10 goals. While you can't expect national titles every year, especially at an ECAC school, you'd have liked to see the program go more than 1-for-5 in return trips to the dance to follow up 2014. The national title didn't do much to sustain or even boost the program.

Though this year probably dinged his resume some, it might be a good time for Bennett to move on if someone comes calling. The program seems likely to struggle for a few years, at least.
Are you sure Ben Thomas is not committed anymore? According to Collegehockeyinc.com and the Powell River Kings website, he is listed as coming to Union next year.

Also, does anyone know what happened to Blake Hayward? I thought he looked very impressive in his short stint. Is he injured or coaching decision?

QUAlum2004
02-26-2019, 06:15 PM
Are you sure Ben Thomas is not committed anymore? According to Collegehockeyinc.com and the Powell River Kings website, he is listed as coming to Union next year.

Also, does anyone know what happened to Blake Hayward? I thought he looked very impressive in his short stint. Is he injured or coaching decision?

Go by heisenberg. Thomas is a decommit.

islander98
02-26-2019, 07:04 PM
Are you sure Ben Thomas is not committed anymore? According to Collegehockeyinc.com and the Powell River Kings website, he is listed as coming to Union next year.

Also, does anyone know what happened to Blake Hayward? I thought he looked very impressive in his short stint. Is he injured or coaching decision?

The BCHL website and Elite Prospects website show no information about Ben Thomas being committed...anywhere. College Hockey Inc. still shows him as committed to Union

I have heard that one of the goalies committed for next year (Nieto) has only played a few games this year. Is he injured?

Does anyone know anything about any of the others committed for next year? Is there someone out there who is tracking their performance? I don't have those skills or the time but I have seen some excellent work done on some of the other teams by some dedicated followers?

ecachawkeyfan
02-26-2019, 08:05 PM
Jeff Cox reported on Thomas in early January.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">‘99 F Ben Thomas of Powell River (BCHL) is no longer committed to Union. Formerly of Winchendon. 7-17–24 in 32 GP this season.</p>&mdash; Jeff Cox (@JeffCoxSports) <a href="https://twitter.com/JeffCoxSports/status/1082752509788200961?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 8, 2019</a></blockquote>
<script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>


Nieto was injured for awhile but recently returned to action.

The best thing you can do to track recruits is see who is committed and check box scores, league stat pages.

Dutchman
02-27-2019, 07:55 AM
IMO a very strange year.
IMO this team/year does not have the look and feel of a Bennett team
IMO this team is underperforming to expectations
IMO the loss of commits is unprecedented
What has changed? A new administration?
What is going on?

FlagDUDE08
02-27-2019, 09:45 AM
IMO a very strange year.
IMO this team/year does not have the look and feel of a Bennett team
IMO this team is underperforming to expectations
IMO the loss of commits is unprecedented
What has changed? A new administration?
What is going on?

Did you think that maybe Bennett is being exposed? Perhaps the success you saw was just the shadows of what Leaman left?

UnionFan4Life
02-27-2019, 09:52 AM
It appears Matt Allen verbally committed to Providence and then he ultimately committed to Union. Iím sure the recruiting process goes both ways for Union and other schools where players commit and de-commit.

Like many other fans, it has been a very frustrating and inconsistent year. Hopefully our senior class steps up for this weekend and beyond. Itíd be nice to see Vidmar and Supiniski put some pucks in the back of the net as they havenít been lightning the lamp enough this year IMO.

turk181
02-27-2019, 02:43 PM
Jeff Cox reported on Thomas in early January.

<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">‘99 F Ben Thomas of Powell River (BCHL) is no longer committed to Union. Formerly of Winchendon. 7-17–24 in 32 GP this season.</p>— Jeff Cox (@JeffCoxSports) <a href="https://twitter.com/JeffCoxSports/status/1082752509788200961?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 8, 2019</a></blockquote>
<script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script>


Nieto was injured for awhile but recently returned to action.

The best thing you can do to track recruits is see who is committed and check box scores, league stat pages.....you sure about Nieto. I don’t think he’s played since 10/5/18. He was recently released by Janesville & if IRRC he will miss all of 19/20.

ecachawkeyfan
02-27-2019, 11:19 PM
....you sure about Nieto. I don’t think he’s played since 10/5/18. He was recently released by Janesville & if IRRC he will miss all of 19/20.

Maybe I was wrong. I had seen this, dated 2/9/19: https://www.juniorhockey.com/news/news_detail.php?news_id=93593


Janesville 2 @ Chippewa 1 (OT) - Matt Hanewall’s goal in overtime lifted the Janesville Jets to a 2-1 overtime win over the Chippewa Steel. Erik Bargholtz scored the only goal in regulation for the Jets. Sean Driscoll and Nick Gonrowski had the assists on Bargoltz’s goal.. Garrett Nieto, playing in his first game since October, made 26 saves on 27 shots. Killian Kiecker-Olson netted the long goal for Chippewa. Josh Langford stopped 37 of 39 for the Steel.

Maybe that article was wrong. That's all I was basing it off of.