Rutgers vs. Butler
February 25, 2006
The Game Story:
PISCATAWAY, NJ (February 25, 2006) - The attack duo of sophomore Nate
Sanderson (Orangeville, Ontario) and junior Chris Doctor (Skaneateles,
NY) combined for six goals as 24th-ranked Rutgers (1-0) raced out to a
6-0 first-half lead and rolled to a 11-3 victory over Butler (0-2) on
Saturday at the Rutgers Stadium Complex.



Saturday's win was Rutgers' fourth consecutive in a season opener, as
the Scarlet Knights scored three times in a five-minute span in the
first quarter and never looked back. Sanderson, who had a team-high
14 goals last season, took a pass from Doctor in front of the goal at
the 10:24 mark of the quarter to open the scoring, and then added
another tally less then a minute later (9:40) to make the score 2-0.
Freshman attack Tad Stanwick (Baltimore, MD), who earned the start in
his collegiate debut, assiststed on Sanderson's second goal and
finished with two on the day.



At the 5:15 mark of the first quarter, senior John Manners
(Springfield, PA) ripped a shot from 10 yards out on an extra-man
situation, making the score 3-0. The game stayed that way until
nearly midway through the second period when Sanderson netted his
third and final goal of the game, taking a pass from Colin Checcio
(Wayne, PA). Checcio, who moved from attack to midfield this season,
finished with two goals and two assists.



Sanderson's goal at 6:40 of the second quarter began a late scoring
spree for Rutgers that saw the Scarlet Knights extend their lead to
7-1 at halftime. Twenty six seconds after going ahead 4-0, Doctor
converted an man-up opportunity off a pass from Stanwick, and Ashcraft
followed less then a minute later when he dodged to the cage and beat
Butler goalie Kyle Harer. Doctor finished out the half with a blast
from 12 yards out with just 24 seconds left.



Rutgers would further distance itself in the third period by scoring
three goals in a four-minute span, as Checcio scored twice and Manners
added his second goal on the game. The lone goal of the fourth
quarter came unassisted from Doctor.



"You never really know what you're going to get the first time out,
but overall I was pleased," said head coach Jim Stagnitta. "We had a
lot of young kids out there, and I think everyone saw today that we're
a team that's going to get better as the season progresses. We had
moments when we were very sharp and efficient, and others when he made
some mistakes. But that's to be expected right now, and it's always
nice to open with a win."



In goal, senior Greg Havalchak (Corning, NY) turned back 15 shots and
scooped up a team-high seven ground balls. Sophomore Ted Melanson
(Baltimore, MD) was solid in the face-off X, winning eight-of-14
draws, including four-of-five in the second period when RU put
together a four-goal rally. The Scarlet Knights outshot Butler 33-30
and held a 35-26 advantage in ground balls.

On defense, the Scarlet Knights featured two freshmen - Chris
O'Dougherty (Kinnelon, NJ) and Chris Gammello (Rockville Centre, NY) -
and a sophomore - Nick Filippone (Northport, NY) - and held the
Bulldogs scoreless over the first 28:40 of the first half.
O'Dougherty had five ground balls.



A balanced offensive attack saw four players score multiple goals and
six players finish with multiple points. Doctor led the way with five
points (three goals, two assists), while Checcio had four points (two
goals, two assists) and Sanderson added three.



Rutgers returns to action next Saturday, March 4, when it hosts
Delaware at the Rutgers Stadium Complex. Face-off will be at 1:00
p.m.