Saint Michael's to host annual ice hockey classics, "Can For a Cookie" food drive

COLCHESTER, Vt. - The Saint Michael's College men's and women's ice hockey teams are slated to host their eighth annual DoubleTree Ice Hockey Classics this weekend at Cairns Arena in South Burlington, as well as a "Can For a Cookie" food drive on Saturday. Tickets for each contest during the weekend are $5 for general admission; $3 for fans 60 and older, and for non-Saint Michael's students; and $1 for children younger than 12.

The DoubleTree Hotel in South Burlington, the title sponsor for the tournaments, is also sponsoring the food drive. Patrons who donate a non-perishable food item during Saturday's 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saint Michael's games will receive one of DoubleTree's famous cookies for free.

The women's tournament begins on Friday when Nichols College (2-8) and the State University of New York at Potsdam (3-8-1) play at 4 p.m. The Purple Knights, who are 1-8-1 thus far this winter, hit the ice at 7 p.m. to face Sacred Heart University (5-8-1), which won last year's tournament. Nichols and Sacred Heart play on Saturday at 1 p.m., and the hosts meet SUNY Potsdam at 4 p.m. in a rematch of a two-game set last month in New York.

On Saturday, Assumption College (2-10-1) and Becker College (5-6) begin the men's tournament at 4 p.m. on Cairns Arena's second rink. The remainder of the contests will take place on the primary sheet of ice, including when the Purple Knights (2-8) oppose Southern New Hampshire University (2-7-2) at 7 p.m. on Saturday. Sunday's match-ups have Becker and Southern New Hampshire squaring off at 1 p.m. before Saint Michael's faces Assumption at 4 p.m. Both of the Purple Knights' games will count toward their Northeast-10 Conference record.

Five of the Saint Michael's women's losses have been by two goals or less, including each of the last four. Senior goalie Erin Stevens (Watertown, Conn./Connecticut Polar Bears) has a .928 save percentage and a 3.00 goals-against average while turning in 38.5 saves per contest. She needs 26 stops to become the 24th player in Division II/III history with 2,000 in a career. In her return from missing last year due to injury, senior defender Allison Graf (Long Lake, Minn./Minnesota Thoroughbreds) has three goals and five points, while sophomore Kristen Spulecki (Orchard Park, N.Y./Buffalo Bison) adds three points as one of three players to score twice.

In their first year under head coach Damian DiGiulian, the men have fallen by one goal on four occasions, including three times during overtime. Junior Ryan Arsenault's (Reading, Mass./North Hampton School) career-high six goals lead the offense, while senior Josh Geary (Wellesley, Mass./Phillips Andover Academy) has five goals and seven points. Sixteen others have at least one point. Three goalies have drawn at least three starts, with sophomore Dave Donzanti (West Chester, Pa./Northfield Mount Hermon) pacing the corps with a 1.64 GAA and a .935 save percentage during three outings.

Women's DoubleTree Ice Hockey Classic

Friday, January 4
Nichols College (2-8) vs. SUNY Potsdam (3-8-1), 4 p.m.
Saint Michael's College (1-8-1) vs. Sacred Heart University (5-8-1), 7 p.m.

Saturday, January 5
Nichols vs. Sacred Heart, 1 p.m.
Saint Michael's vs. SUNY Potsdam, 4 p.m.

Men's DoubleTree Ice Hockey Classic

Saturday, January 5
Becker College (5-6) vs. Assumption College (2-10-1), 4 p.m. (Rink #2)
Saint Michael's College (2-8) vs. Southern New Hampshire University (2-7-2), 7 p.m.

Sunday, January 6
Becker vs. Southern New Hampshire, 1 p.m.
Saint Michael's vs. Assumption, 4 p.m.