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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Big Win on the Big Pond

No one saw this coming.

No matter who I talked to last night, from JoeBa to Coach Guy to some of the parents, including Ed Olczyk, no one expected that the Icers would lay an 11-0 beating on the Fighting Illini at their own barn.

The first period certainly didn't give an indication that the score would be so lopsided. Illinois came out and challenged the Icers through the first half of the frame, testing Matt Madrazo early on. At the other end, Illini goalie Nick Clarke thwarted the Icers until Tommy Olczyk opened the scoring by converting a nifty drop pass from Justin Kirchhevel at 8:32.

Taylor Holstrom made it 2-0 with 2:10 left in the period, with Kirchhevel and Olczyk picking up the assists.

The trio poured it on in the second period as the Icers scored 6 more,including a Dan Loucks power play goal, to lead 8-0 after 40 minutes.

That would be the night for Kirchhevel, Holstrom and Olczyk as Coach Guy sat them for the final 20 minutes. However, the Icers added 3 more - Mike McDonagh on the power play, Paul Daley and Eric Steinour - to make it 11-0.

So, through their first 100 minutes in Penn State blue and white, Justin, Tommy O and Taylor have combined for 9 goals and 16 assists (Kirchhevel: 2-9=11, Olczyk: 4-4=8, Holstrom: 3-3=6).

It's just two games into the season, so is it too early to give the line a moniker? My old partner John Mulhern thinks they need one. He challenged the fans to come up with something that will top the "BUZZ Line" of Brandon Rubeo, Jaime Zimmel and Paul Zodtner. I'll take credit for coming up with that one.

Hmm, If Justin's name was Nate or Norm we could have the TNT line. If you've got an idea, email me at

Here's the first seven goals from Friday night, along with my interview with proud hockey dad Eddie Olczyk. Forgive the poor lighting and video quality, but that is Eddie with your humble reporter.

Edzo had the night off from his many TV duties and brought the whole O-clan down from Chicago. It was very gracious of him to stop by our "booth" for a chat.

Barb mentioned that during the first two periods, Eddie was like any other hockey dad, standing at the top of the balcony intently watching his son perform.

Just another example of what makes hockey families in general, and the Icers family to be specific, so special.

EDIT: Just wanted to take the opportunity to thank Kyle Rossi for his great live blogging during the game.

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