Athletics & Recreation

Hockey: Goaltenders jockey for position

The Pioneers will lack some of the firepower they boasted last year, as the team’s top two scorers, Drew Shore and Jason Zucker, opted to forgo their college eligibility to sign pro contracts.

However, the cupboard is hardly bare for coach George Gwozdecky’s crew. Junior Nick Shore emerged as a consistent scoring threat last year, and Gwozdecky has expressed confidence that a group of sophomore forwards that includes Ty Loney, Zac Larraza and Daniel Doremus could develop into steady goal scorers.

DU should pack plenty of scoring punch along the blue line with sophomore Joey LaLeggia, whose 38 points last year were the most in the nation by a freshman defenseman, and junior David Makowski, who scored 30 points as a freshman before enduring an injury-marred campaign last year.

Gwozdecky will face an intriguing situation at goaltender as Sam Brittain, Juho Olkinuora and Adam Murray battle for playing time. Brittain missed the first half of last season while recovering from knee surgery, and Olkinuora took advantage of the opportunity to produce a team-best 2.18 goals-against average.

“We’ll be good up the middle with Nick Shore,” Gwozdecky says. “Right now, we don’t have a No. 1 goalie. They’ll have to earn it. Adam, Sam and Juho have all shown that they can give us a chance to win. They realize the situation, and they all want to be the guy. It should be a healthy competition.”

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