By Victor Fernandes Erie Times-News staff blogger
Staff writer Victor Fernandes has ice in his veins. Hockey – he plays it, coaches it and provides the region's best coverage of it.   Read more about this blog.
 Phone: 814-870-1716
Posts tagged ‘mercyhurst university’
Posted: August 27th, 2013

Former Mercyhurst University women’s hockey player Jess Jones was selected third overall by the Brampton Thunder in the Canadian Women’s Hockey League Draft on Monday. She joins two former Lakers – Vicki Bendus and Bailey Bram – with the Thunder and four former Lakers in the league. Meghan Agosta-Marciano plays for the Montreal Stars, while Kelley Steadman plays for the Boston Blades. Jones totaled 61 goals and 154 points in 138 games for Mercyhurst from 2008-12. She had 28 goals and 53 points on the way to leading Belarus Pantera Minsk to the championship of the Elite Women’s Hockey League in Austria a season ago.

Posted: August 25th, 2013

The Mercyhurst women’s hockey program were represented by four current and former players – rising senior forward Christine Bestland and alums Meghan Agosta-Marciano, Vicki Bendus and Bailey Bram – at Hockey Canada’s National Women’s Program Red-White Series at Markin MacPhail Center in Calgary, Alberta. The series capped a week-long camp that ended Saturday and featured 27 players training with Canada’s National Women’s Team in preparation for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, and the top 13 players on the nation’s National Women’s Development Team.
Agosta-Marciano led the White team to the series title with three goals, including both goals in a 2-1 shootout win against the Red Team in the final game Saturday. Bendus (goal, two assists) and Bestland (no points) also played for the White team. Bram had no points for the Red team. Mercyhurst assistant coach Delaney Collins is part of Hockey Canada’s coaching staff.

Posted: August 21st, 2013

Erie native Ryan Zapolski, a Cathedral Prep alumnus and former standout goaltender for the Mercyhurst University men’s hockey team, will play for Raumann Lukko of Finland’s SM-liiga in the 2013-14 season. He signed with the club this past spring.
Zapolski, 26, turned a run to the ECHL’s most valuable player award with the South Carolina Stingrays a season ago into a chance to play overseas. He posted a 27-11-2 record and a league-best 1.64 goals-against average, .942 save percentage and eight shutouts on the way to being the second goaltender in the league’s 25-year history to earn top rookie, top goaltender and MVP honors in the same season. He set the ECHL record for goals-against average, tied the mark for shutouts and tied for the second-best save percentage in league history.
Spencer Carbery, Stingrays head coach and director of hockey operations, called it “one of the greatest years for a goaltender that I’ve ever seen with my own eyes.” Zapolski spent the past two seasons in the ECHL. He also had short stints in the American Hockey League with the Milwaukee Admirals and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins a season ago. He completed his four-year career as starter at Mercyhurst in 2011.

Posted: August 20th, 2013

Former Mercyhurst University men’s hockey player Paul Chiasson has signed with the San Francisco Bulls, the ECHL affiliate of the National Hockey League’s San Jose Sharks.
“Paul is a very fast and tenacious right winger,” Bulls president and head coach Pat Curcio said in a prepared statement. “He shoots the puck well in stride and has always scored a lot of goals.”
Chiasson, a native of Toronto, Ontario, who graduated this past spring with a degree in business management, finished his four-year career with 109 points (55 goals, 54 assists) in 151 games. The forward ranks 10th on the school’s career NCAA Division I scoring list and tied for fifth in career goals. He’s one of 15 players in school history to reach the 100-point mark. He had 15 goals and 27 points a senior a season ago.

Posted: August 1st, 2013

Mercyhurst University women’s hockey players Christine Bestland and Shelby Bram are set to join 38 other players for Canada’s National Women’s Development Team Camp, which is set for Aug. 10-18 at Canada Olympic Park’s Markin MacPhail Centre in Calgary, Alberta. Meanwhile, Lakers third-year assistant coach Delaney Collins will serve as one of two assistant coaches on the National Development Team’s staff.
The camp features 24 forwards, 12 defensemen and four goaltenders, who were chosen based on evaluations by Hockey Canada scouts this past season as well as past performances with Canada’s National Women’s Program. Hockey Canada officials will select 13 players to join 27 senior team players in Calgary to train for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, this coming February.
Bestland, 21, a rising senior forward, had a career-high 72 points (28 goals, 44 assists) a season ago. She needs 28 points to join former Lakers Meghan Agosta, Valerie Chouinard and Jesse Scanzano as the only players in school history to reach 200 career points. Bram, 19, a rising junior forward and younger sister of former Lakers forward Bailey Bram, had a career-high 31 points (eight goals, 23 assists) a season ago after totaling 21 points as a freshman.

Posted: July 26th, 2013

There are still spots available to enroll in the 24th annual Rick Gotkin Laker Hockey School, which will be held Aug. 5-10 at Mercyhurst Ice Center. Classes begin at 8 a.m. with the youngest campers skating early the day, followed by the older skaters. The camp includes 2 1/2 hours of on-ice instruction each day in skating, passing, puck handling, team play, shooting, checking and positional play at both ends of the ice. It also features a ratio of one coach for every seven players.
For more information, call (814) 824-2542 or (814) 836-5775 after 7 p.m. and send an e-mail to

Posted: July 9th, 2013

Mercyhurst University rising senior forward Daniel O’Donoghue begins prospect development camp with the NHL’s Calgary Flames Wednesday in Calgary, Alberta.
O’Donoghue, 22, joins 26 other forwards and 43 prospects in all at the camp, which runs through next Tuesday at Canadian Olympic Park WinSport as one of 11 players who are attending on tryout agreements. He also experienced camps with the Washington Capitals last summer and the New York Islanders in 2011.
O’Donoghue, a native of Port Jefferson Station, N.Y., set career highs with 12 goals, 24 assists, 36 points, a plus-15 rating, three short-handed goals and 104 shots on goal. He was tied for second in NCAA Division I in short-handed goals.

Posted: April 5th, 2013

Erie native Ryan Zapolski continues to garner honors from the ECHL.
Zapolski, a former Mercyhurst University goaltender who plays for the South Carolina Stingrays, was named the league’s most valuable player Friday, a few days after being named the league’s top rookie. He also was named recently to the ECHL’s all-rookie and first teams. Zapolski, 26, set the league’s single-season record with a 1.64 goals-against average and tied the record of eight shutouts. He also led with a .942 save percentage, which was tied for the second-best mark in league history. Zapolski finished tied for second with 27 wins and fifth with 2,378 minutes played.

Posted: March 11th, 2013

The Mercyhurst University women’s hockey team will face Cornell Saturday at 1 p.m. in their NCAA Division I quarterfinal game at Lynah Rink in Ithaca, N.Y. All four games in the opening round will be played Saturday. Harvard (24-6-3) and fourth-seeded Boston College (26-6-3) will join the Lakers (28-6-1) and second-seeded Big Red (27-5-1) in playing at 1 p.m. Clarkson (28-9-0) travels to No. 3 Boston University for a 3 p.m. game, while top-seeded and defending champion Minnesota (38-0-0) hosts North Dakota (26-11-1) at 5 p.m.
In other news, the Lakers swept College Hockey America’s weekly honors. Junior forward Christine Bestland was named player of the week for totaling two goals and three points in wins against Robert Morris and Syracuse that clinched the program’s 10th conference title in the past 11 years. Senior Stephanie Ciampa earned top goaltender honors for stopping 45-of-47 shots in the two games. Jenna Dingeldein had a goal and three points to earn top rookie honors.

NCAA Women’s Division I Tournament schedule
Quarterfinals – Saturday

Harvard (24-6-3) at No. 4 Boston College (26-6-3), 1 p.m.
Mercyhurst (28-6-1) at No. 2 Cornell (27-5-1), 1 p.m.
Clarkson (28-9-0) at No. 3 Boston University (26-5-3), 3 p.m.
North Dakota (26-11-1) at No. 1 Minnesota (38-0-0), 5 p.m.
March 22 at Ridder Arena – Minneapolis, Minn.

UND-Minnesota winner vs. Harvard-BC winner, 6 or 9 p.m.
Mercyhurst-Cornell winner vs. Clarkson-BU winner, 6 or 9 p.m.
Championship game*
March 24 at Ridder Arena – Minneapolis, Minn.

Semifinal winners, 4 p.m.
* Streamed live on

Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: March 10th, 2013

NCAA Women’s Division I Tournament schedule
Quarterfinals – Friday or Saturday

North Dakota (26-11-1) at No. 1 Minnesota (38-0-0), Saturday at 5 p.m.
Harvard (24-6-3) at No. 4 Boston College (26-6-3), Saturday at 1 p.m.
Mercyhurst (28-6-1) at No. 2 Cornell (27-5-1), TBD
Clarkson (28-9-0) at No. 3 Boston University (26-5-3), Saturday at 3 p.m.
March 22 at Ridder Arena – Minneapolis, Minn.

UND-Minnesota winner vs. Harvard-BC winner, 6 or 9 p.m.
Mercyhurst-Cornell winner vs. Clarkson-BU winner, 6 or 9 p.m.
Championship game*
March 24 at Ridder Arena – Minneapolis, Minn.

Semifinal winners, 4 p.m.
* Streamed live on

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