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RPI Sharp in Exhibition

By Ed Weaver

Troy Record, October 8, 2006

TROY - It was just an exhibition game against a lower level of competition but Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute looked impressive Saturday night in a 5-1 victory over Toronto's York University.

Sophomore center Seth Klerer charted one goal and one assist while playing right wing for much of the game and four other Engineers netted goals in the penalty-filled game.

Junior goalie Jordan Alford, who's played little since losing the starting job early in the season two years ago, looked sharp in the net for Rensselaer, stopping all 13 shots he faced.

First-year RPI coach Seth Appert was pleased with his team's intensity - and the Engineers' work with "what we've been stressing."

"We've talked about being aggressive with our forwards," Appert said, "and cheating to the offensive side occasionally and taking calculated risks. And they did that. Jake Morissette's goal was a good example of that, a short-handed goal."

Appert then spoke of Alford.

"Jordan was outstanding," Appert said. "Without question. What we liked about Jordan tonight was that he was in control. He wasn't sliding through the crease and getting caught out of position and being helter-skelter and having to scramble. He was in control and was very poised and confident."

"Just trying to help the team," Alford said. "The (defense) let me see the puck tonight. It was a pretty easy time. A good night."

The Engineers outshot York, 19-2 in the first period but didn't have many quality scoring chances.

Things changed after that.

"You started seeing guys look for the trailers and things like that," Appert said. "There were some pretty goals scored tonight."


Reed Kipp started the play on the Engineers' third goal - and he finished it with a blast past Bruce as the sophomore defenseman skated down the slot.

Kipp tipped a rebound out of the crease in front of Alford and banged the puck off the boards to Kirk MacDonald. The Engineers captain went into the zone and fed Jonathan Ornelas. When Ornelas was checked, the puck slid right to Kipp coming down the slot.

He fired a riser that Bruce - who made a number of brilliant saves in the game - could not handle.

"There was a little 3-on-2," said Kipp, a sophomore defenseman, "and Coach Appert's really been stressing that D-men jump up into the play, giving us the green light. I saw a green light, the puck came out there and it was like an early birthday present."

Though not a big scorer, Kipp does have a hard shot.

"Yeah, can't complain," he said.

On his goal, Morissette picked up a loose puck in the neutral zone - Klerer's pass off the boards jumped right over a York stick - skated in on Bruce, switched hands a couple times and slid a short-range backhander under him.

"I was in pretty tight and I knew I had to get it off pretty quick," the junior right winger said. "Good play by Seth to get it out there to an area there and I was able to skate in."

Morissette's goal came with 1:15 remaining in the first period and 12 minutes into the second, Kurt Colling took a pretty feed from Tyler Eaves and one-timed a chipper past Bruce was the left side of the net.

"Great pass, unbelievable," Colling said. "I gave it to (Eaves) behind the net and I showed up in front and it was there for me. A pretty simple tap-in."

Klerer scored on a pretty mid-slot feed from Oren Eizenman and senior right winger Tommy Green, nearly forgotten after scoring six goals as a freshman, completed the scoring with a pretty back-hander with 1:34 remaining.

"My first thought was to pull it to the backhand," said Green, who spent virtually the entire past two seasons on the bench. "But when I looked up, there were two guys there, so my best option was to go around them with the backhand and just put it on net and see what happened. Luckily enough, it got high enough to go in."

Now, the big challenges come, as the Engineers open the regular season next Saturday by hosting fourth-ranked Boston University.

"What I didn't like," Appert said, "was that we took a few unnecessary penalties. Against a powerful offensive team like Boston University, it could hurt us. We need to stay out of the box a little more than we did tonight."