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Great Shot, Scott!

Engineers Hoping Basiuk Unleashes His Rocket Blasts More Often This Season

By Ed Weaver

Troy Record, October 9, 2002

TROY - Scott Basiuk has the hardest shot on the RPI hockey team.

That fact may be quite important this season, even though the junior defenseman has only six goals in his 61-game college career.

With most of the top scorers from last year's team graduated, the big blueliner from Prince Albert, Sask., may be asked to aim that rifle shot of his toward the net more often this year.

And that suits him fine.

"Yeah, I've got to get the puck to the net as much as I can," Basiuk said. "That's my job ... it was last year."

As a freshman, Basiuk had three goals and five assists in 28 games.

Last year, he had three goals and eight assists and had some time on the second power-play unit.

In 33 games, though, Basiuk was charted with just 39 shots on goal, a number coach Dan Fridgen would like to see increase dramatically this year.

"Part of the reason we brought Scott in (the program) was that very hard shot," Fridgen said. "He can disrupt the defense or the (penalty) killers and create some chances for our forwards."

"It's a rocket," RPI goalie Nathan Marsters says of Basiuk's shot.

He welcomed his time on the power play last season and is anxious, to see such time increase.

Senior captain Danny Eberly, though, also a left-handed defenseman, figures to get most of the time at the left point on the No. l power-play unit.

"Coach gave me the opportunity to play with Munner (graduated right-handed defenseman Steve Munn)," Basiuk said. "Whenever he needed me, I tried to do my best and I tried to get the puck on net as much as I could and look to pass when there was no chance to shoot."

How much can Basiuk score this season?

"We'll have to see about that," he said. "I don't know. I'm going to shoot as hard as I can and just get it on net and see how many opportunities we get."

Basiuk says he's learning from Eberly, who had 14 assists last season.

"Danny's the man on the power play, for sure," he said. "But we're both going to try to get the puck down to the (forwards) and create opportunities. We're going to blast away."

Also graduated is defenseman Jim Vickers, who had over 20 assists in each of the past two seasons, many on the power play.

Basiuk says he's been impressed in practice with all four of RPI's freshmen defensemen, right-handers Brad Farynuk - an offense-minded 'D' man - and Keith McWilliams, and lefties Alexander Valentin and Scott Romfo.

He's played with each, even the lefties.

"They all look pretty good, actually," he said. "They're in good shape, they're all strong and mobile. They can all play. Everybody's going to be fighting for jobs and that's always good."