Lakers tie for first, look for more positives this weekend

The Oswego State Lakers are finally the top Division III team in the nation, but haven’t escaped those pesky Plattsburgh Cardinals just yet, as the two SUNYAC rivals sit atop the latest Coaches Poll in a first-place tie. This only deepens the rivalry and sets up more anticipation for the whiteout on Jan. 30 at the Campus Center Ice Arena. Before then, there are several other important games to be played.

Supreme in the SUNYAC. The Lakers remain the only unbeaten team in SUNYAC play, taking it to SUNY Morrisville, 8-1, last week. After Oswego State and Plattsburgh, there is a pretty significant gap in the conference, with the next best team being Fredonia 4-3. The Lakers have two SUNYAC matchups this weekend with SUNY Brockport and SUNY Geneseo coming to town.

Gunning for the starting job? I’d expect to see Paul Beckwith between the pipes at least once this weekend, but Kyle Gunn-Taylor has at the very least earned himself some consistent playing time for the rest of the season. Another two wins against Utica College and Morrisville kept Gunn-Taylor’s goals against average under two as he moved to 5-0-0 with the two victories. Coach Gosek seems to like to utilize the winning goaltender so we’ll have to see how he handles this situation from here on out.

Home cooking. The Lakers haven’t had much trouble playing anywhere so far this season, losing only one game out of their first nine. Nevertheless, they are unbeaten at home, and with three more home games coming in the next two weekends, Oswego State will try to keep it rolling.

Hats off. Congrats to Chris Laganiere for his hat trick against Morrisville at home on Nov. 21. He finished it off with two third-period goals and also added a power play assist in the game as his line (along with Eric Selleck and Justin Fox) finished the night with 10 points total in the rout of the Mustangs. Laganiere leads the team with nine goals.

Now that the Oswego State Lakers have gotten a sniff of the top seed in D-III, you can bet that they don’t want to surrender it, but rather pull ahead of Plattsburgh for sole possession of first place. A pair of wins this weekend would certainly help. Games are at 7:00 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday in the Campus Center Arena.