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Mallia Reaches 100-Win Milestone, Blue Devils Continue to Roll

CCSU trailed less than three and a half minutes into the game as Piero Iberti put Holy Cross on the board. The lead would be short-lived, as Rob Diclemente scored the first of five unanswered goals to finish out the first period, and the Blue Devils never looked back.

Dabkowski, Mike Diclemente, Billy Edwards and Dane Anderson also added goals for the Blue Devils in the period.

Coach Mallia was happy about his milestone victory, but refused to take all the credit.

“I am not into personal accomplishments. I started coaching here five years ago and the team was pretty rock bottom,” he said. “We have had great coaches and players, and it was great to get the win. I get the satisfaction that we have gotten [so much] out of the program.”

Matt Tyksinski scored the second goal for Holy Cross to open the second period, but it would be the final offensive effort for the visitors as the Blue Devils would score another four goals to close out the game.

Dabkowski added a goal in the second period. Forward Kevin Butler, who scored a power play goal with 3:47 left in the second period, was pleased with his team’s smooth play throughout the game and stated that it was the main reason for their strong victory on the night.

“The most important thing about the way that we played tonightwas that we were fluid,” Butler said. “We had good energy. The first five minutes, we had a bit of a lapse. But the best way to deal is to be fluid.”

CCSU would add two more goals in the third from Dabkowski and Mike Diclemente, both on the powerplay.

“Tonight we didn’t play the deepest team, but they are improved from the last time we played them when we won 16-4,” Mallia said. “I give them a lot of credit.”

Netminder Craig Height saved 27 of 29 shots for the Blue Devils. Height praised his teammates’ defensive effort throughout the game.

“We got some guys in that haven’t been playing and overall we played pretty well,” Height said. “We talked in between [the first and second] periods about how we needed to tighten the defense. [The effort] was definitely big.”

Height already is looking forward to the postseason, which CCSU will be playing in regionals, as well as the national tournament in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

“We now need to win two games in Albany and then we can go to Michigan for nationals,” Height said.

CCSU also defeated New York University on Saturday, by a score of 10-4. Dabkowski, as well as the Diclemente brothers, scored twice and had three assists each.

Anderson, Jeff Pease, Ryan Beaulieu and Erich Stoneman also added a goal each. Hugo Goodwin added two goals for NYU and Matthew Anderson and Patrick O’Keefe added a goal each in a losing effort.

Carmine Vetrano stopped 34 of 38 shots for the Blue Devils, helping the team sweep the weekend’s games.

Blue Devil hockey returns next weekend with an alumni game at the Newington Arena on Friday, Feb. 20 at 7:30 p.m., followed by a match against Sacred Heart University at 8:30 p.m.

-Christopher Boulay, Asst. Sports Editor