BOSTON – The winner of two straight, the Suffolk hockey team makes the short trek to historic Walter Brown Arena Tuesday night where it will meet Wentworth in ECAC Northeast action at 7 p.m.
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THE FIRST LINE
- Suffolk is riding a five-game unbeaten streak after a 2-0-0 week. The Rams skated to gritty 4-3 win at Western New England Thursday, before taking down Curry 3-2 Saturday. Stanton Turner put in the game-winner with 27 seconds left on Thursday night, while Justin Selep propelled the Rams to victory Saturday with just 1:27 remaining in regulation.
- After playing in three consecutive overtime contests, Suffolk has won two straight in the final 1:30 of regulation.
- With six points, Suffolk and Nichols sit atop the ECAC Standings. The Bison, however, is undefeated in league play at 3-0-0, while the Rams are 2-0-2 against conference opponents.
- Coming into the weekend, Suffolk (3-0-2, 2-0-2 ECAC Northeast) is one of two unbeaten teams in ECAC Northeast. Joining the Rams in near perfection is Johnson & Wales who sits at 2-0-2 overall and 1-0-2 in league play.
- After a two-goal performance against Western New England Thursday, Justin Selep kept his point-streak up with the game-winner against Curry. The junior forward has now recorded a point in all, but one contests this season. He leads the team in goals (4) and points (7) and is second on the team with helpers (3).
LAST TIME OUT
This season Suffolk hockey likes to keep its fans on the edge of their seats until the final buzzer and it was no different Saturday night at Emmons Horrigan O'Neil Memorial Rink. With the game even at 2-2, Justin Selep scored with just 1:26 remaining to propel the Rams past Curry in ECAC Northeast action.
Selep's game-winner, the junior's second this season, kept Suffolk's unbeaten streak alive as the Rams won their second straight and moved to 3-0-2 overall and 2-0-1 in league action. Stanton Turner go the scoring going, while Justin Holliday also found the back of the netting. Simon Leahy helped on two tallies, while Mikhail Bryan and Shaughn Shields, Sean Heelen and Danyil Medvedev each handed out one assist in the conference contest.
Curry owned a shot advantage outsthooing the Rams, 37-27. Brandon Smolarek recorded 35 saves, bolstering the senior's season total to 175 en route to his third win of the year.
MORE READING: Selep Propels Hockey to 3-2 Victory Over Curry
LOW DOWN ON THE LEOPARDS
A perennial ECAC Northeast powerhouse, Wentworth sits just one game above .500 at 3-2-1 overall and 2-1-1 into the showdown with the Rams. The Leopards started the season at Fitchburg's ICFCU Shootout, blanking Worcester State, 6-0, and falling to the Falcons, 7-2. Wentworth did not falter on the loss as it rebounded with two straight wins at Curry (3-1) and versus Western New England (3-0). Last week, the Leopards tied Johnson & Wales, 0-0), before falling at Endicott, 5-3.
Twelve different Leopards have multiple points so far this season for the league's second-best scoring offense, with Ryan Sullivan (6-0-6) and Chris Sattler (2-3-5) leading the charge with six and five points, respectively.
In net, a trio of goalies has seen time for Wentworth, but Joel Miller is the Leopards' stalwart, starting six of six games. The senior has accumulated 127 saves, while allowing just eight pucks past him to go along with a .941 save percentage and 1.77 goals-against average, which ranks third in the league.
Meeting for the 25th time since 1999, Suffolk and Wentworth have had plenty of history. The Rams trail the all-time meetings with the Leopards, 4-18-2, but Suffolk is 1-2-1 over the last four contests. The Rams last victory over Wentworth came in the form of a 4-0 shutout February 22, 2014.
Last season, the two squads saw each other three times for the first time since 1999. Two 2-1 Suffolk setbacks sandwiched a 5-5 tie.
RIGHT ON, ROOKIES
The freshman class has made a significant impact for Suffolk this season. Rookie forward Justin Holliday's five points are second on the team off two goals and three handouts. Freshman forward Tommy Bishop (1-1-2), Mikhail Bryan (0-2-0) and Nick Mosher (0-2-2) all have two points.
As a whole, the Class of 2019 accounts for 26.2 percent of the Rams' offense with three goals and eight assists.
Brandon Smolarek has stood tall for Suffolk between the pipes and is a major reason why the Rams are unbeaten this season. The senior netminder has turned away 175 attempts, the second most amongst ECAC Northeast goalies. Smolarek boasts a 2.32 goals-against average and .936 save percentage.
The Chesterfield, Michigan native steered away 46 shots against Salve Regina November 4, the most by a Suffolk goal keeper since junior Kevin Venturoso stopped 52 attempts against Tufts January 8, 2014.
Smolarek's career total is now 165 shy of 2,000 saves.
QUICK START RAMS
The Rams have been nothing short of tremendous to start any give game this season. Suffolk is outscoring the opposition, 6-1, in the opening period. The Rams have attacked first in all, but one contest this year en route to a 3-0-2 ledger.
WE'RE GOING INTO OVERTIME, AGAIN
Suffolk's first three games this season needed extra time, marking a first in the Ram's hockey record books, which date back to the 1999-2000 season.
Last season the Rams played five four-period contests (2-1-2) including three in the month of November.
The most overtime games Suffolk has played in a single season dating back to 1999-2000 is six, which happened on two occasions; 2012-13 and 2005-06. The Rams went 1-0-5 in four-periods in 2012-13 and 1-1-4 in OT games in 2005-06.
In the midst of a three-game week, Suffolk returns to Emmons Horrigan O'Neil Memorial Rink for a Thursday non-conference match with Stonehill. Puck drop is scheduled for 7:40 p.m.