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Lord Blesses RPI with Some Goals

Sophomore Winger's Production Increases as Confidence Grows

By Ed Weaver

Troy Record, February 23, 2006

TROY - Dan Fridgen thought he had a big, strong lower-slot goal-scorer when he recruited Andrew Lord out of the Vancouver area.

The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute sophomore right winger has begun to deliver on Fridgen's vision.

Not a true big goal-scorer, Lord was admittedly disappointed with his four-goal, two-assist output in 33 games as a freshman. And during his first 10 games this season, Lord charted just one assist.

How things have changed! He's jumped to seventh on the team in scoring with 13 points (7-6-13).

"Just confidence and more ice time," the 6-foot-2, 210-pounder said of his increased production.

Lord celebrated his 21st birthday on Wednesday and senior defenseman Keith MCWilliams turned 23.

Fridgen terms Lord a "big power forward who can create offense for himself by using his size and strength. And he has the ability to finish on those plays."

Lord has certainly shown that ability lately.

Even though he didn't score his first goal until Game 15, Lord's total of seven goals is fifth on the team and he's been the hottest scorer over the past three weeks with three goals, two assists during the past five games.

"I don't think so," Lord said when asked if a lower level of confidence was a problem for him last season. "I don't think it was a downfall. It's probably higher now but just because I'm more used to situations, the style we play, everything in general."

"A little more ice time this season," he reiterated. "I'm on the power play, that helps. I'm getting a lot more touches out there and you just grow as a player."

Not only did Lord have 33 games under his belt, he says his off-season training was much more detailed.

"I had a full workout program in the summer," he said, "to work on your skating and shooting definitely helps. It's just a process, for sure."

While Lord is a fairly versatile player and has manned all three forward positions for the Engineers, playing over a dozen games at center probably hindered him last season.

"I definitely think that the wings free me up a little bit offensively," he said. "At center, you have a lot more responsibility down low in the 'D' zone. On the wall, of course, you do have some energy in your own zone which allows you to put it toward the offensive end a little more, down low cycling and what not."

How about on the power play; in the left slot, moving around instead of parked in front of the net?

"Right now they've got me in front of the net quite a bit," he said. "I like mucking it up down low there, working for rebounds and deflections and stuff."

Lord considers his hard wrist shot his best asset as a goal-scorer.

"I like my wrist shot the best," he said. "I'm trying to work on my release every day."

Lord was asked to rate himself as a collegiate goal-scorer on a 5-point scale, with Croxton (averages 15 goals per year) and Kirk MacDonald (16 last season) being a 4.5.

"That's a tough question," he said. "I don't know. Give me two more years, we'll see."

Can Rensselaer fans expect 15-18 goals from Lord?

"I hope so," he said. "I definitely like to score goals. I think I'm capable. I'm definitely going to continue to work on my scoring ability this summer."

Lord has a large cheering section at Houston Field House and chants, 'An-drew Lord-o, An-drew Lord-o' fill the ole barn each time he hits the ice.

"Yeah, I hear it," he said. "Who wouldn't? It gets you pumped up. We have great fans here. They've been behind us all season."