While fans of the Pittsburgh Penguins continue to wait for an NHL season to start, the ice will return to the CONSOL Energy Center this weekend for the first ever Three Rivers Classic. Four college hockey teams will take part in the two-day tournament. The teams participating are Robert Morris, Penn State, Ohio State, and Miami University (Ohio). Robert Morris will face Penn State at 4:30 on Friday afternoon while Miami (Ohio) will battle Ohio State at 7:30. The winners of the two matchups will face off in the championship game at 7:30 on Saturday following the third place game between the two losing teams from Friday. Tickets can be purchased here to attend the games.
Let’s take a look at the first matchup between Robert Morris and Penn State…
December 15, 2012: RMU 3 PSU 2
With a 3-2 victory over Penn State on December 15th, the Colonials are now 3-0-2 in their last five games. That mark is tied for fifth-longest in the nation.
The Colonials come in with a 7-4-2 overall record while the Nittany Lions have recorded a 7-8 record in their first season as a Division I hockey team.
Colonials goaltender Eric Levine‘s .942 save-percentage ranks among the top five in the nation in that category.
When the Colonials last visited the Nittany Lions on December 15th, Levine recorded 38 saves in their 3-2 victory. Chase Golightly, Jeff Jones, and Tyler Hinds scored the goals for the Colonials. Tommy Olczyk and Curtis Loik were credited with the goals for Penn State while Matthew Skoff recorded 26 saves in the loss.
Penn State’s 17.5 penalty minutes per game is the most in the nation. Penn State freshman David Glen‘s mark of 1.07 points per game is tied for the second best in the nation among rookies.
One NHL draftee will participate in the game. Nittany Lions center Max Gardiner was drafted by the St. Louis Blues in the third round (74th overall) in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft.
The game will start at 4:30 PM EST and will be broadcast on Penguins Radio 24/7.
For Robert Morris, senior forwards Adam Brace and Zach Hervato are tied for the squad’s scoring lead with 12 points each. Hervato has recorded six goals and six assists while Brace has scored five goals and tallied seven assists.
Nittany Lions freshmann David Glen has already exceeded expectations as a rookie. He leads Penn State in scoring with sixteen points (Eight goals and eight assists) in fifteen games played. Team camptain Tommy Olczyk is the son of former Penguins broadcaster, head coach, and player Ed Olczyk. He scored his second goal of the season against Robert Morris in their last meeting.
For more information about Ohio State and Miami (Ohio), check this out!