Feb 18, 2014 12:33 AM by Greg Smith
Air Force (18-10-4, 13-7-3 AHA) hosts the RIT Tigers (8-17-5, 7-13-3 AHA), Friday-Saturday, Feb. 21-22, at 7:05 p.m. MT each night at Cadet Ice Arena. Air Force is tied for third place in the AHA (with UConn) with 29 points. RIT is in seventh place with 17 points.
Inside the Standings
With four regular-season games remaining, teams are preparing for the playoffs. Mercyhurst leads the AHA with 34 points, while Bentley is second with 32 and UConn and Air Force are tied for third with 29. Robert Morris is fifth with 28, Niagara is sixth with 24 points and Canisius is seventh with 23. The top four teams at the end of the regular season receive a bye in the first round of the playoffs. Seeds five through eight will host seeds nine through 12 in the first round, March 7-9, in a best of three series. The winners of those series will then travel to the top four seeds for a best of three series, March 14-16.
All games will be broadcast in Colorado Springs on The Animal AM 1300 and on the internet at www.GoAirForceFalcons.com. Jay Ritchie will call the play-by-play. Dave Toller will be the color analyst. Pregame show begins 30 minutes before faceoff each day. All games will be video streamed live on AmericaOne.com.
Series vs. the Tigers
Air Force leads the all-time series vs. RIT, 20-15-3. In the regular season, AFA has a 17-15-3 lead. The Falcons have a 3-0 record vs. RIT in the playoffs. More than one-third of the games (13 of the 38) have gone into overtime. Of those 13 games, AFA has won six, RIT has won four and three have ended in a tie. 31 of the 38 games have been decided by two goals or less AFA has won six of the last seven in the series. Air Force has won six straight games played at the Academy dating back to 2008. In Colorado, AFA leads the all-time series, 12-5-2. The teams have played 12 AHA games at the Cadet Ice Arena, and AFA has a 9-2-1 lead in the series. Earlier this season, Air Force beat RIT, 2-0, at Ritter Arena in Rochester. Last season, Air Force took two of three from RIT. AFA won 3-2 in overtime at the Academy in December. In Rochester in February, the teams split with Air Force winning, 5-3 in game one, and RIT winning game two, 2-1
Final Regular-Season Home Games for Seniors
Air Force's seven seniors will play their final regular-season home game on Saturday, Feb. 22, vs. RIT. The senior class of Jason Fabian, Adam McKenzie, Jacob Musselman, Ryan Timar, Tony Thomas, Jason Torf and Mitch Torrel have combined to win 76 games, including two Atlantic Hockey tournament championships and one AHA regular-season title. The class has played in two NCAA Tournaments. The class has combined to score 264 points (101-163-264) and has played in a combined 765 games. Five of the seven members of the class have played in more than 100 games.
Earlier This Season vs. RIT
Jason Torf turned away all 39 shots he faced as Air Force beat RIT, 2-0, at Ritter Arena in Rochester, N.Y. Ben Carey scored in the first period and Scott Holm scored on the power play in the second period as Air Force earned its fifth win of the season. Defenseman Alex Halloran had two assists in the game. RIT outshot Air Force, 39-25, in the game. AFA was 1-for-4 on the power play while RIT was 0-for-3. Jordan Ruby made 23 saves for the Tigers.
Scouting the Tigers
RIT is 8-17-5 overall and 7-13-3 in the AHA for 10th place with 17 points. The Tigers are winless in their last eight games (0-6-2) and were swept last weekend at home by league-leading Mercyhurst by scores of 6-3 and 6-2. RIT's last win was a sweep of Army, Jan. 17-18, at home. In late November-early December, RIT had a six game unbeaten streak with wins over St. Lawrence, AIC, Sacred Heart and Niagara. Since Dec. 14, the Tigers are just 2-10-3. The Tigers are 3-8-2 on the road this season and have not won a road game since Nov. 30 at Sacred Heart. Senior Michael Colavecchia leads the team with 12 goals and 26 points. Senior defenseman Greg Noyes has 17 assists and 22 points. Junior Jordan Ruby and freshman Mike Rotolo have split time in the net. Ruby has a .892 saves percentage and a 3.74 GAA with a 3-11-2 record. Rotolo has a .906 saves percentage with a 2.99 GAA and a 5-6-3 record.