Last Friday and Saturday, September 8-9, the Division I Ice Hogs faced off against the Illinois State University Redbirds. The Hogs came out of the weekend with two victories, sweeping the Redbirds for the first time in program history.
On Friday, the Hogs struck first in the first period with a goal by Cory Delisle, assisted by Jesse Foskey and Sine Chadi. The Redbirds evened things up prior to the end of the first. Arkansas regained the lead in the second period with a goal by Luc Gradisar, assisted by Cal Owens and Cory Delisle. Three minutes later the Redbirds struck back and pulled ahead in the third period with just three minutes to play. After an ISU penalty, the Razorbacks pulled their goaltender for a 6-4 advantage and, with just thirteen seconds left to play in regulation, Chris Stovall scored the equalizer. The Hogs carried the play in overtime, but the game went to a shootout where both Chris Stovall and Cory Delisle scored to secure a 4-3 Arkansas victory.
The Redbirds got off to a hot start in Saturday’s rematch. Although the Hogs scored first on tally by Tyler Valentin, assisted by Andrew Pellegrino and Chris Salmon, the Redbirds answered just nine seconds later. After adding two more goals in the first and still another in the second, the Hogs were trailing 4-1 midway through the contest. Across the balance of regulation, however, the Razorbacks scored three unanswered goals thanks to Collin Young, Sine Chadi, and Landyn Howze. Overtime again failed to produce a winner and, like Friday, the game headed to a shootout. Thanks to a Cory Delisle goal, Arkansas secured a second come-from-behind victory in as many days. Arkansas will see ISU next year in Springdale, AR on February 9 and 10. In the meantime, the DI Razorbacks are idle this weekend before heading to rival Alabama for a pair of games on on September 22 and 23.
This coming weekend, September 15-17, first-year Head Coach Colin Hesse and the Division III Razorback Ice Hockey team will open up its tenth season by playing in the Pacific Region Showcase in Springfield, MO.
Coming off of a 13-19-1 season, the Ice Hogs will face the University of Kansas, University of Nebraska, and Missouri State University in the Showcase. The Division III Razorbacks seek redemption after posting a cumulative 1-9 record against those three teams last season. All time, the Hogs hold a 23-15 record against the three teams (Kansas: 4-4; Nebraska: 4-4; Missouri State: 15-7).
Like the Division I roster, the off-season brought numerous changes to the Division III team. In total, the Razorbacks added twelve new faces to the Division III roster. The Hogs return fifteen players from last season, including last season’s leading scorer, Evan Kerr. Senior Andrew DeNome returns as captain.
The puck drops at 7:30 pm on Friday night against Kansas; 5:00 pm Saturday night against Missouri State; and 2:30 pm Sunday afternoon against Nebraska.