Dates: Feb. 7 & 9, 2013
Time: 7:05 p.m.
Locations: Buffalo, N.Y./Lewiston, N.Y.
Rinks: Buffalo State Sports Arena/Dwyer Arena
The Canisius College hockey team wraps up its season series with rival Niagara. The schools are set to meet on Thursday at the Buffalo State Sports Arena before playing in Lewiston on Saturday. Both games are set for 7:05 p.m. and will be aired on Time Warner Cable SportsChannel.
SCOUTING THE GRIFFS
• Canisius enters the week in fifth place of the Atlantic Hockey standings with a 9-8-2 league mark and is 10-13-5 overall
• Last weekend, the Griffs split a pair of games against Holy Cross, posting a 3-0 win in the opener and falling 5-1 in the finale.
• Junior Kyle Gibbons netted three of the team's four goals during the weekend. He leads the team with 22 points and 14 goals.
• Junior Tony Capobianco has anchored the nation's ninth-ranked defense with a 2.23 goals against average and .926 save percentage.
BATTLE OF THE BRIDGE RIVALRY
• This weekend's games are not only worth points in the AHA standings but also two points in the Battle of the Bridge series.
• The Battle of the Bridge series is an all-sports competition between the two rival schools.
• Niagara currently leads the 2012-13 series, 10-5. Each hockey game this weekend is worth one point in the standings.
• Canisius has won the competition 5-of-7 years, including the last two.
GIBBONS REBOUNDS TO TAKES SCORING LEAD
• After a slow start to the year, junior Kyle Gibbons has taken the lead for the Griffs.
• Gibbons did not register a point in his first eight games (Canisius' first nine games).
• Since Nov. 10, however, Gibbons has returned to form, recording 14 goals and eight assists in 19 games.
• Gibbons' 14 goals during that time are the third most in the country. He has netted at least one goal in 12 of the last 19 games.
• The junior now leads Canisius with 22 points and 14 goals this year. His 14 tallies are also the most in Atlantic Hockey.
WE'RE GOING STREAKING!
• Kyle Gibbons' strong play since Nov. 10 has been highlighted by his consistent play since the beginning of 2013.
• The junior has recorded at least one point in a career-best nine-straight games, totaling 14 points, nine goals and five assists.
• The nine-game streak is the longest by a Griff since Cory Conacher tallied a point in 12-straight games from Nov. 20, 2009 to Jan. 16, 2010.
A NEED FOR THREE
• The one goal for the Canisius offense should be to reach three goals.
• The Griffs are 10-0-1 when scoring three or more tallies in a game.
• On the opposite end, Canisius owns a 0-13-4 mark when failing to net three in a contest.
CANISIUS - NIAGARA SERIES HISTORY
• In a rivalry that began in 1997, Niagara holds a 17-8-2 advantage in the all-time series, including a 13-7-2 edge in Division I meetings.
• Since the Purple Eagles joined Atlantic Hockey prior to the 2010-11 season, the home team has struggled in the series with a 1-6-1 record.
• Niagara edged the Griffs in Buffalo earlier in the season, 2-1. Overall, the Purple Eagles have won the last three meetings between the two schools.
• The Griffs' last win in the series came during the 2011 Atlantic Hockey First Round, earning a 6-3 victory in Lewiston to advance to the league's quarterfinals.
ABOUT THE PURPLE EAGLES
• Niagara enters the weekend with a 17-4-5 record and a 16-1-2 conference mark. The team's 34 points in league play are nine more than second place.
• The Purple Eagles are currently ranked 15th in the latest USCHO.com poll and 14th in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine rankings.
• Ryan Murphy leads the team with 25 points on 11 goals and 14 assists.
• Giancarlo Iuorio has netted a team-best 12 goals but has missed the last eight contests.
• Carsen Chubak has anchored a strong Niagara defense with a 1.81 goals against average, .941 save percentage and 17-3-5 record.