Sooners stand no chance against D’Elia, No. 1 ASU hockey
The streak continues for the No. 1 ASU hockey team after a dominant performance in Oklahoma on Friday night.
The No. 6 Sooners (10-6-1, 6-4 home) fell to the Sun Devils 6-1 for Oklahoma’s second straight loss at home.
The Sooners didn’t have much say in the matter, as ASU (17-0) out-played Oklahoma in all facets of the game. The Sun Devils played a complete 60-minute game, which coach Greg Powers said was imperative.
“It was overall, the best we’ve played,” Powers said. “We were executing everything we needed to.”
Junior captain Colin Hekle iterated the night before that the team was going to have to play as a whole to get a big win against Oklahoma.
“We played hard,” Hekle said. “Everyone played their positions and (did) their jobs and (was) just a good team effort.
“There was a little bit of lapse there in the last minute of the game, and gave up the shutout for Joe (D’Elia).”
After his first shutout of the season, D’Elia was seconds away from back-to-back goose eggs. Where to point the finger for the only Sooner goal with 46 seconds remaining is still speculated — cough, cough — but the foremost 59 minutes and 14 seconds was flawless by junior goaltender Joe D’Elia and his ‘mustache’.
“They (the Sooners) made a good play there,” D’Elia said. “It is what it is.”
Regardless, D’Elia seems to be finding his zone in between the pipes for the Sun Devils, and Powers is eager for what’s to come with him.
“He’s exactly what I knew he was,” Powers said. “He’s playing really well, and he’s settling in.”
With D’Elia continuing his dominating performance with a 1.72 goals per game average and 12-0 record, the ASU offense doesn’t need to find the net too many times to come away with a victory. That doesn’t stop the Sun Devils from racking up goals at any given opportunity.
Six different ASU players put the puck past Oklahoma sophomore goaltender Colin Fernandes. Fernandes had only given up 21 goals thus far this season, and the Sun Devils put up almost one-third of his total.
Senior forward Dan Styrna was one of the six ASU players with a goal and was his second-straight game finding the back of the net. “I’m putting shots on net,” Styrna said.
Styrna has been playing up front with Hekle and seems to be benefitting the both of them. “We discussed our roles: He likes to carry the puck, and I like to move the puck, so it’s working out really well,” Styrna said. “I like playing with the big guy.”
The 17th-straight victory looked to come easy for the Sun Devils, but they know there’s still a game remaining on their road trip.
“The 60-minute effort needs to be replicated,” Powers said. “They (the players) got to keep in the forefront of their minds that we didn’t come here for two (wins), we came here for three.”
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org