Men's Hockey: Huskies open in Hartford

The Huskies will open the season taking on Alabama Huntsville. On Sat., Oct. 1, the UConn men’s hockey team hosted an exhibition game against St. Francis Xavier. The X-Men traveled from Canada to defeat the Huskies 4-3. (Jason Jiang/The Daily Campus)

For the second-straight season the UConn men's hockey team will open their season against Alabama Huntsville.

Last timeout the Huskies split a two game set, with both games ending 5-2.

UAH is undefeated so far in this young season as they swept No.20 Ferris State last weekend. Not only was it the Chargers’ first sweep of a ranked team, but also the team's first conference sweep. UAH joined the Western Collegiate Hockey Association in 2013.

One player the Huskies will have to look out for is Max McHugh. McHugh has led the Chargers in points the past two seasons. The talented forward has gotten his season off to a good start notching two goals in his team’s first two games, earning him the WCHA offensive player of the week last week.

Another player who the Chargers will be relying on is goaltender Matt Larose. The British Columbia native made 67 saves last weekend and allowed only four goals in two games.

UAH leads the all-time series against UConn 9-3-0. The Huskies have consistently struggled with opponents from the WHCA holding a record of 6-36-0 versus opponents from the conference.

The Huskies are coming off a loss in an exhibition match against St. Francis Xavier. UConn dropped a close one to the Canadian team losing 4-3. After going down 4-1 entering the third period the Huskies attempted to mount a comeback, but were unsuccessful.

“We’ll get four practices in this week and hopefully we can eradicate some of that lack of execution and be better for Friday night,” said head coach Mike Cavanaugh after the loss.

Alternate captain David Drake suffered an injury last Thursday in practice and the team will be hoping he can recover in time.

“We’ll see how he rebounds and rehabs this week. Both he and Spencer [Pratt] were elected assistant captains by the team this week so clearly their leadership is going to be important to have in the lineup this Friday,” Cavanaugh said.

The Huskies were picked to finish seventh in the Hockey East preseason coaches’ poll. UConn will surely use this as motivation. In the Huskies first two years in the Hockey East, they have exceeded their preseason rank.

Antonio Salazar is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at