Hockey Ends 2021 Home Slate vs. Golden Knights
TEMPE, Ariz – In the last series of a three-week homestand at Oceanside Ice Arena, the Arizona State men's ice hockey team (7-9-0) caps off its 2021 home schedule with two games against the No. 18 Clarkson Golden Knights (9-4-3) on Dec. 10-11. Puck drop is slated for 7:05 p.m. MT on both nights.
"We just have to dump everything we have Friday and go from there," said head coach Greg Powers on the mindset of the team. "We have to get back to having fun, playing free, and supporting each other. We know we can do it. We've proven we can do it. We just haven't done it consistently. It's just a mental reset."
After being swept for the first time this season at Oceanside by No. 12/11 Denver, the Sun Devils look to gain back some momentum as they enter the second half of the season. Netminders Ben Kraws and Cole Brady split the time in net last weekend. Kraws made 23 saves on Friday night posting a .887 save percentage. On Saturday, Brady made 34 saves, his seventh time this season making more than 30 saves.
"It's what we signed up for. It's what we do, and it's another really good team," said Powers on playing another ranked opponent. "We pride ourselves on playing brutal schedules. It is what's brought us success. We have to get through it. We have 20 games left. Our best hockey is in front of us. We know that… there's a ton that can still happen."
Senior forward Jordan Sandhu scored his first goal of the season on Friday night and the first shorthanded goal of his career. Sandhu has 40 points (11G-29A) in his four years at ASU. Sophomore forward Michael Mancinelli also scored his first goal of the season on Saturday night. Mancinelli has 13 career points (6G-7A) in Maroon and Gold.
Heading into the weekend Powers emphasized the importance of the penalty kill, "The focus is: get back to winning the special teams battle and continue to do a lot of what we're doing five on five."
Clarkson currently sits at No. 4 in the ECAC, behind Cornell, Quinnipiac, and Harvard. The Golden Knights are currently on a three-game winning streak after most recently beating conference rival Cornell in a shootout on Saturday night.
ASU has faced the Golden Knights five times in its NCAA Division I history, posting a 1-4 record. The last meeting between the two ended in a series split at Clarkson on January 24 and 25, 2020, with both games going into overtime.
The Sun Devils will travel to Colorado College on December 17 and 18 for the final series of 2021.
HISTORY VS. CLARKSON (5 games)
January 25, 2020- W, 3-2 OT
January 24, 2020- L, 1-2 OT
December 28, 2018- L, 0-3
November 28, 2015- L, 1-4
November 27, 2015- L, 2-3