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RPI Hurting

Excerpted from "Road Hasn't Been Kind"

By Ken Schott

Schenectady Daily Gazette, January 20, 2006

At least Union has some players it can use for the extra forward slot. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has no such luxury.

The Engineers (4-3-3, 10-10-3) need more than just coach Dan Fridgen behind the bench. They need Hawkeye Pierce, Trapper John and B.J. Hunnicutt back there because the team is starting to resemble a M*A*S*H unit.

When RPI faces Brown (2-6-2, 3-10-4) tonight at 7 and Yale at 7 p.m. Saturday, it will be without at least four players.

Forward Kevin Croxton will miss his second straight weekend with a bruised ankle. Defenseman Brad Farynuk is out at least two weeks after injuring his ankle against St. Lawrence last Friday. Forward Kevin Broad is out indefinitely with what Fridgen termed "a lower body injury." And defenseman Alexander Valentin's season is over after having his torn ACL repaired.

Forward Tyler Eaves, who has a high ankle sprain, is possible for this weekend. Returning to the lineup is forward Mark Yurkewecz, who has been out the last seven games with a leg injury.

The Engineers will have 17 skaters available, one under the limit.

"It's one of those things," Fridgen said. "Last year, we had 16 forwards and nine [defensemen], and some guys hardly got any playing time because there weren't that many injuries. Some years, there's just a lot, and this happens to be one of them."

So no one should be complaining about playing time.

"For the first time in a long time, deciding the lineup is an easy thing," Fridgen said.