The ASU hockey team may be No. 1 in the ACHA, but the Sun Devils believe it’s only the beginning.
Friday night brought a wide variety of characters to “The Madhouse on Main Street” in Tucson to watch the heated rivalry between No. 17 UA and ASU (12-0-0).
UA fans did not get the upset they may have wanted, as the Sun Devils executed flawlessly on all facets in the game winning 7-1.
Coach Greg Powers knew the series against UA (5-6-0) was going to be physical and involve a lot of chirping.
“We stayed disciplined,” Powers said. “This is a really, really tough place to do that in, because the crowd can get to you.”
The Sun Devils kept their composure, and turned their hatred into motivation.
ASU had one of the least penalized games of the season totaling three Sun Devils in the penalty box.
Penalties have plagued ASU this season, and have directly resulted in self-inflicted goals.
“Coach has been harping on us to stay out of the box,” sophomore forward Kale Dolinski said. “We wanted to get the win and carve some pumpkins tonight.”
Junior goaltender Joseph D’Elia was thankful for the extra help from his defense, and for ASU staying out of the box.
“Defensively, we were impeccable,” D’Elia said. “They got one of the luckiest bounces I have ever seen.”
D’Elia is referring to the only puck that got passed him all night after saving 21 of 22 shots on goal.
The shot on goal by UA freshman forward Brennen Parker got a generous deflection into the net.
Across the ice, junior goaltender Steven Sisler didn’t exactly have the night D’Elia had, or what UA needed.
The Sun Devils pierced Sisler for 53 shots on goal putting seven of them on the scoreboard.
Dolinski put three of those passed Sisler to record a hat trick to help “carve the pumpkins” for ASU.
“It was great to have my line back,” Dolinski said. “(Liam) Norris finally came back and it was good to have the guys back.”
Norris, the sophomore forward, also had a great game opposite Dolinski with a goal and two assists.
However, the entire Sun Devil team played as a unit, and could arguably be one of the best performances of the season thus far.
“It was the full 60 (minutes) by our guys,” Powers said. “Most importantly, they stayed out of the box, and when we do that, we can beat anyone.”
Powers was pleased to say the least with the way his team played in a hostile environment like Tucson.
The players felt even more confident with the way they performed on the ice against the Wildcats.
“It was our best all around game,” D’Elia said. “We were great.”
The 27-game winning streak continues into Saturday night’s contest, but the intensity may be even higher after Friday night’s events.
A questionable hit on freshman star defenseman Jordan Young fired up the Sun Devils, and Powers wasn’t pleased with the non-call.
“We’re very unhappy about that (Young’s hit),” Powers said. “We’ll see how tomorrow goes.”
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