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 ‘rensselaer polytechnic institute’
Posted: November 25th, 2013

Mercyhurst and their Atlantic Hockey Association counterparts had a solid showing in non-conference games this past weekend, headlined by the Lakers’ two-game split with No. 14 Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute at Mercyhurst Ice Center. Read more by clicking the link

Posted: July 11th, 2013

Rick Gotkin heads into the 2013-14 season – his 26th as Mercyhurst men’s hockey coach – with another schedule filled with quality opponents.
The Lakers, which a season ago fell one win shy of capturing their first Atlantic Hockey Association title and NCAA Division I tournament berth since 2005, opens the regular season Oct. 11 at Mariucci Arena in Minneapolis against host Minnesota – one of the nation’s most prestigious programs – in one of the nation’s premier events, the Ice Breaker Tournament. They conclude the two-day tournament Oct. 12 against either Clarkson or New Hampshire.
The Lakers play their home opener Oct. 15 at Mercyhurst Ice Center against Ferris State, which reached the national title game two seasons ago. Then they travel for a pair of two-game, non-conference series at Merrimack (Oct. 18-19) and Alaska (Oct. 25-26). They also have Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Nov. 22-23 at MIC) and Ohio State (Dec. 28-29 in Columbus, Ohio) on the non-conference schedule. Gotkin said a potential outdoor game against the Buckeyes at Progressive Field in Cleveland won’t be held for what he called unknown reasons. The game was tentatively announced last summer but was never finalized.
Mercyhurst opens the AHA schedule Nov. 2 against Air Force at MIC. They face a challenging stretch in conference in the second half, with trips to Air Force (Feb. 7-8) and Rochester Institute of Technology (Feb. 14-15) followed by a home-and-home series with defending regular-season champion Niagara (Feb. 21-22). They finish the regular season with a home-and-home series against Robert Morris Feb. 28 and March 1.
The AHA playoffs begin March 7 and conclude with the semifinals and title game March 21 and 22, respectively, at Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, N.Y.

Posted: June 24th, 2010

Rick Gotkin (Contributed/

The Mercyhurst College men’s hockey program has no NHL draft picks in its 23-year history.

Coach Rick Gotkin doesn’t expect that to change during this weekend’s draft at Staples Center in Los Angeles.

“It would be great,” said Gotkin, who has coached potential candidates, most notably Ben Cottreau (2004-08), Cullen Eddy (2006-10) and Scott Pitt (2007-10) in recent years.

Clint Thomas (1990-92) was chosen 136th overall by the New York Rangers in 1987 before transferring from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Jim Pollio (1991-92) was selected 243rd overall by the Philadelphia Flyers in 1989 before transferring to the Lakers from Plattsburgh (N.Y.) State.

Yet the Lakers, like the Atlantic Hockey Association, remain under the radar with NHL clubs, Gotkin said.

“The thing that we fight is our league is evolving,” he said. “When they’re taking college players, they’re taking them from the WCHA, Hockey East, CCHA and ECAC. I don’t think they’re drafting kids yet from our league.”

The Lakers and AHA have enjoyed success in other ways. Most recently, former Lakers Jamie Coghlan, Eddy, Brett Robinson, Matt Pierce and Scott Reynolds won a ECHL championship with the Cincinnati Cyclones last month. Chris Tanev, Rochester Institute of Technology‘s freshman defenseman, signed a three-year contract with the Vancouver Canucks on May 31.

“There’s no question our league gets better and better every single year,” Gotkin said. “But the NHL is still a little (focused on) the more high-profile leagues.”

- Victor Fernandes

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