Canisius (11-16-5, 10-11-2 AHA) vs. Robert Morris (16-12-2, 11-11-1 AHA) Dates: Feb. 22-23, 2013 Time: 7:05 p.m. Locations: Buffalo, N.Y./Pittsburgh, Pa. Rinks: Buffalo State Sports Arena/84 Lumber Arena
With the season winding down, the Canisius hockey team prepares for a home-and-home series with Robert Morris. The schools - separated by just one point in the standings - are set to meet in Buffalo on Friday and Pittsburgh on Saturday with both games scheduled for 7:05 p.m.
SCOUTING THE GRIFFS
• Canisius enters the weekend tied for eighth in the Atlantic Hockey standings with a 10-11-2 league record. The Griffs are just one point behind seventh and two behind fourth place.
• The Griffs lost a pair of tight games at Air Force last weekend, falling 3-1 in the opener and 3-2 in the finale.
• Junior Kyle Gibbons leads the Griffs with 24 points and 14 goals with junior defender Ben Danford posting a team-best 13 assists.
• Junior Tony Capobianco has anchored the nation's seventh-ranked defense with a 2.17 goals against average and .932 save percentage.
• After a slow start on the extra-man unit, the Griffs power-play unit has awaken.
• In the last 12 games, Canisius has scored on 26.7 percent of its power plays, compared to just 11.9 percent in the first 20 contests.
• The Griffs have scored at least one power play goal in eight of the 12 games during the streak.
• Overall, Canisius has scored on 17.9 percent of its power plays this season, more than double the 8.3 percent conversion rate last year.
RUMBLE ANCHORS POWER-PLAY IMPROVEMENT
• One of the biggest differences in the power-play unit from the first half of the season to the second half is freshman Chris Rumble.
• Rumble has played each of the last 12 contests after missing the first half of the campaign, coinciding with the Griffs' 14.8 percent improvement with the extra-man.
• The rookie defender plays the point on the power play and now has five points (2g, 3a) with the extra-man advantage.
• Rumble, who has seven points (2g, 5a) overall, leads all Canisius defensemen with 0.53 points per game and with two goals.
• The team's penalty kill has been just as strong for the Griffs this year.
• Canisius owns the nation's third-ranked penalty kill unit, successfully killing 90.1 percent of power plays this year (109-of-121).
• The penalty kill success shows a huge improvement from last year.
• During the 2011-12 campaign, Canisius killed only 77.7 percent of its opponents' power plays. The Griffs ranked 51st of 58 teams nationally.
• Special teams was the biggest downfall for the Griffs last year as the team was outscored by 33 goals (but only minus-13 even-strength). This year, Canisius is +10 on special teams.
CANISIUS - ROBERT MORRIS SERIES HISTORY
• Robert Morris holds a slight edge in 12 meetings between the two schools, 6-5-1.
• The series is even in Buffalo at 3-3-1, while Robert Morris holds a 3-2-0 edge in Pittsburgh.
• The Colonials earned a victory at Canisius earlier in the season, posting a 4-0 win on Nov. 9. It marked the first time that the road team won in seven Atlantic Hockey meetings.
ABOUT THE COLONIALS
• Robert Morris is 16-12-2 on the season and 11-11-1 in Atlantic Hockey play. The Colonials are currently seventh in the Atlantic Hockey standings, just one point ahead of the Griffs.
• The Colonials are coming off a split with nationally-ranked Niagara last weekend, falling 4-3 in the opener and earning a 6-5 overtime win on Saturday.
• Senior Adam Brace leads the team with 30 points, 10 goals and 20 assists. Sophomore Cody Wydo has netted a team-best 14 goals.
• Overall, four Robert Morris players have netted at least 10 goals this season.
• Senior Eric Levine has started 27 of the team's 30 games in net this season. He owns a 2.65 goals against average and .929 save percentage.
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