Special to The Sun
Coming back from two weeks of unplanned time off the ice, the No. 15 University of Central Oklahoma hockey team hoped to shake off the rust as they welcomed the top-ranked Arizona State Sun Devils. The best team in the country pounced, however, knocking off UCO 4-0 at the Arctic Edge Ice Arena.
The Bronchos (6-8) were scheduled to play against Rutgers and Texas Christian in the previous weeks, however Hurricane Sandy and a scheduling snafu on the part of TCU prevented UCO from playing, losing four critical games from their schedule. The Sun Devils (16-0) come in following a 6-1 pasting of Division 2 Colorado.
ASU went up late in the first off a kneeling goal by Stephen Collins, beating freshman netminder Cole Buckley over the shoulder. However, a reinvigorated Bronchos attack took it to the Sun Devils in the second, with several good scoring opportunities on ASU goalie Joseph D’Elia coming all for naught.
Things began to unravel in the third, however, when UCO freshman Thierry Martine was sent off the ice with a five minute major for spearing D’Elia on a Bronchos rush. The power play gave Collins a chance to strike again, sending ASU up 2-0 midway through the third. An additional power play goal by Danny Anderson and a shorthanded breakaway goal by Colin Hekle were the nails in the Bronchos’ coffin.
UCO will return to the ice Friday as they welcome the Arizona Wildcats to the Arctic Edge. The No. 16 Wildcats are coming in following a 3-1 upset of No. 6 Oklahoma. Admission is $7, $5 for UCO students and faculty, and free for children under five.