June 23, 2014

Around Campus: PC's Brown fighting rare bone cancer

By NEHJ Staff

Above, PC Friars forward Drew Brown is facing a major challenge off the ice. (Dave Arnold/New England Hockey Journal)

Providence College junior forward Drew Brown has returned home to receive treatment for Ewing’s sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer, the school announced in May.

“My family and my teammates have been great,” Brown said. “I have had so much support from them, and that’s made a tough situation a lot easier.”

Brown recently began chemotherapy treatment at the University of Michigan’s University Hospital in Ann Arbor, Mich.

“Drew is in for a big fight, but he’s as tough and as hardworking as they come,” Providence coach Nate Leaman said. “I have known Drew and his family for several years, and we will be there to support them however we can in the coming year.”

During the 2013-14 season, Brown played in 16 games, netting two goals and adding four assists for six points. He played in all three of his team’s Hockey East playoff games before being sidelined with a lower-body injury sustained in the semifinal game against New Hampshire at the TD Garden on March 21.

While receiving treatment for that injury, an MRI revealed the tumor.

“The (Providence College) training and medical staff was there every step of the way, trying to figure out what was wrong,” Brown added. “I’m glad our sports medicine department takes such pride in caring for their athletes and found this tumor early because of their persistence.”

Brown has played 75 games over the past three seasons for the Friars, totaling 10 goals and 22 assists for 32 points. A marketing major, he played hockey and baseball at Kent School for two seasons before coming to Providence.

Pearl done at Holy Cross

Holy Cross men’s coach Paul Pearl (Winthrop, Mass.) resigned from his position last month to join Ted Donato’s Harvard staff as assistant coach.

Pearl served as the Crusaders head coach for 19 of the past 20 years, posting an overall record of 297-293-69 and a 236-188-60 mark in conference play. He led the Crusaders to two Atlantic Hockey Association championships, one Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference title and two trips to the NCAA tournament (in 2004 and 2006).

He was behind the bench in 2006 when Holy Cross upset Minnesota, 4-3 — one of the bigger upsets in NCAA history.

“I am saddened to see Coach Pearl go, as he has been a big part of this great institution both as a student-athlete and a coach,” said director of athletics Nathan Pine. “But we support Paul and his family in this decision and wish him continued success.”

The all-time winningest coach in Holy Cross history, Pearl was named the Atlantic Hockey Coach of the Year in 2004 and 2011, the MAAC Coach of the Year in 2002, the New England Writers’ Association Coach of the Year in 1998 and the ECAC East Coach of the Year in 1998.

Holy Cross began a national search for Pearl’s replacement, and on June 23 announced Providence alum and former UConn assistant David Berard (West Warwick, R.I.) as its new head coach. 

Playoff format tweaked

Hockey East directors approved an expansion of its playoff format during their recent league meetings in Naples, Fla.

With Connecticut joining the conference for the 2014-15 season, the directors voted to include all 12 institutions in the postseason tournament. There will be a best-of-three format in both the opening round of play as well as the quarterfinal round, which will be played at campus sites, hosted by the higher seed.

This past season, as Hockey East welcomed Notre Dame as its 11th member institution, the conference directed an 11-school tournament, with the top five teams receiving first-round byes.

O'Connell hired at BU

Former Boston University captain Albie O’Connell (Watertown, Mass.) has returned to Boston University to serve as an assistant under head coach David Quinn (Cranston, R.I.).

O’Connell heads back to Commonwealth Avenue following three-year stints at both Northeastern and, most recently, Harvard. He spent one season each at Holy Cross and Merrimack after a two-year appointment at Niagara.

O’Connell played in two Frozen Fours (1996, 1997) and helped the Terriers reach the national championship game and claim a Hockey East title as a sophomore. He and his fellow members of the Class of 1999 are one of only four BU classes to win four Beanpots. In 149 career games, O’Connell totaled 108 points (42 goals, 66 assists).

Harvard names captains

Defenseman Max Everson and forward Kyle Criscuolo were named captains of the 2014-15 Harvard men’s team, the 122nd and 123rd captains in team history, last month.

Harvard will feature co-captains for the first time since the 2010-11 season, when Michael Del Mauro and Christopher Huxley both donned the ‘C’ on their jerseys. With Everson as a captain, it will be the 12th consecutive season the Crimson will have a defenseman leading the squad.

Criscuolo, who will be a junior next season, is Harvard’s first junior captain in more than half a century, as the last non-senior to serve was William Ayers in 1945-46.

Brown taps Naclerio, Lorito as captains

Brown men’s coach Brendan Whittet (East Providence, R.I.) has announced that rising senior Matt Lorito and rising junior Mark Naclerio (Milford, Conn.) will serve as team captains for the 2014-15 season, while rising junior Nick Lappin will serve as an assistant captain.

Lorito, who was an assistant captain as a junior this past season, finished with 29 points with 10 goals and shared a team high with 19 assists en route to All-Ivy League second-team honors. In 89 career games, he has amassed 83 points (36 goals, 47 assists).

Naclerio is coming off a sophomore season that saw him lead the team with 16 goals and 35 points. He also paced the Bears with four game-winning tallies and tied for first with 19 assists, chipping in with three power-play goals.

Army's Riley gets post

Army head coach Brian Riley has been named the new president of the American Hockey Coaches Association and will start in his new role on July 1.

Riley has served as vice president for membership the past two seasons, a role that will now be assumed by Cornell assistant coach Ben Syer.

“Brian has demonstrated a sincere desire to assist the AHCA since he first became an officer two years ago,” said AHCA executive director Joe Bertagna (Arlington, Mass.) in a statement. “It is easy to see the qualities in him that have made him a success over the years.”

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