Air Force (7-6-3, 3-5-2 AHC) hosts the Niagara Purple Eagles (7-5-1, 6-2-1 AHC), Friday and Saturday, Dec. 1-2, in a two-game league series. Friday’s faceoff is at 7:05 while Saturday’s game will start at 5:05 pm. Niagara is receiving votes in the USCHO.com national poll.
Saturday’s game on Comcast
The Air Force-Niagara game on Friday, Dec. 1, at 7 pm MT will be televised live on CET. The game will be carried across Colorado and Utah exclusively on XFINITY channel 900. It is available to 1.2 million households in that territory. The game will re-air on Saturday at 3:30 pm and Sunday at 12:30 pm. Brian Roth will call the play-by-play while Kyle Huson will be the color analyst.
CET will also be broadcasting the Colorado College game on Friday, Dec. 29, at Cadet Ice Arena.
Teddy Bear Toss
The Teddy Bear Toss is back at Cadet Ice Arena Saturday, Dec. 2. Fans can bring a stuffed toy and, when the Falcons score their first goal, throw it on the ice. The toys will then be distributed to children in need during the holiday season. Following the game on Saturday, the Falcons will be available for a post-game autograph session.
Skate with the Falcons
The annual Skate with the Falcons will be on Sunday, Dec. 3 from 11:00 am to 12:15 pm at Cadet Ice Arena. Admission is free and skate rental, if needed, is $3.
Every home game and every Atlantic Hockey game will be streamed on AtlanticHockey.tv or a subscription fee.
Both games will be broadcast on Xtra Sports 1300 and will be available online at www.GoAirForceFalcons.com. The game is also available on TuneIn. Jay Ritchie will call the play-by-play while Dave Toller will provide color analysis. Pregame show begins 30 minutes before faceoff each day.
Air Force tied its season high with five goals on Nov. 26 at Sacred Heart ... The eight goals in the SHU series are a season high ... Evan Giesler leads the team with 12 points (4-8-12) ... Jordan Himley (4-7-11) and Matt Koch (3-8-11) each have 11 ... Matt Serratore leads the team with six goals ... Seven different Falcons have scored the team’s 10 power play goals ... Erik Baskin leads the team with three ... Himley has a current five-game point streak (2-3-5) ... Giesler has scored in four of the last five games (3-3-6) ... Phil Boje ranks sixth in the nation with 38 blocked shots ... Air Force has scored 41 goals this season with 13 in the first period and 14 in each the second and third ... Erich Jaeger leads the AHC with a +9 ... Air Force has scored four power play goals the last four games (4-for-20) ... The Falcons killed eight of nine opponent power plays last weekend.
Scouting the Purple Eagles
Niagara is 7-5-1 overall and receiving votes in the USCHO.com national poll. The Purple Eagles, picked to finish last in the preseason coaches and media poll, are in third place in the AHC with 13 points (6-2-1) under first-year head coach Jason Lammers. Niagara split a two-game series at AIC last weekend. Sophomore defenseman Noah Delmas leads the team with 16 points (1-15-16). Junior Tanner Lomsnes leads the team with 10 goals. Freshman Brian Wilson has started nine of the 13 games in goal and has a 2.43 GAA and a .904 saves percentage.
Series vs. Niagara
Air Force and Niagara have played 66 times and the Purple Eagles hold a 33-28-5 lead in the series that began in 1996 when both teams were independents. As AHC rivals, AF has a 17-6-2 lead in the series. As independents, the teams played 10 times and AF was 5-5 vs. the Purple Eagles. From 1999-2000 to 2005-06, both teams were in College Hockey America and played 31 times. Niagara held a 22-6-3 advantage. Since the 2010-11 season, the teams have both been members of Atlantic Hockey.
Fifteen of the last 24 games were decided by two goals or less with six going OT. Last season, Air Force swept the Purple Eagles at Cadet Ice Arena (2-1 and 4-1) and has won six straight in the series.
In games played at the Academy, Air Force leads the all-time series, 18-14-1. In AHC games at the Academy, the Falcons are 12-3 against Niagara. Two of those losses came in the 2014 AHC Quarterfinals as Niagara eliminated Air Force by winning the last two games in the series.