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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Cusanelli and Griffith establish offense in 6-2 win over CSU

Sofia Moraga
Arizona’s Charlie James fights to make a goal against Colorado State University on Nov. 3 at the Tucson Convention Center.

The Arizona Wildcats hockey team defeated Colorado State on Nov. 4 to sweep the series with a 6-2 win. 

Austin Wilson started in net for the second time in the span of 24-hours, and let up just one more goal than he had in the previous contest. This was the second time Wilson had played, and won, both nights of a back-to-back this season. 

With Wilson backstopping the team, many of the players were free to unload on offense, which they did. 

Former Jr. Flyer and Fitchburg Falcon, Justin Plumhoff were dealing the puck all game long. His vision on the ice allowed his teammates to score three goals and earn him three assists. He was also strong in the faceoff circle in a game where many of the draws were not going in the Wildcats’ favor. He certainly proved he’s a well-rounded offensive player and has climbed up to second in scoring on the team with 18-points (4,14). 

The power play was potent for the Wildcats, with three of their goals coming off the man advantage. Two of those were scored from the one spot on the ice, by one player: Tyler Griffith. In both professional and college hockey, playing four forwards and one defender on the power play has become increasingly popular. Arizona decided to get in on this and has recently played Griffith on the point where a defenseman would usually play. Twice he was fed the puck, rifled a shot off and scored from between the top of the circle and the blue line.

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While Griffith was one goal away from the illusive hat trick – three goals in one game – leading scorer Anthony Cusanelli snagged one with one first period goal and two third period goals. His first goal, which was the first of the game, was a snipe on a breakaway. The next two were tap-ins in close thanks to swift feeds from his teammates. 

Cusanelli’s scoring had slowed down since coming back to Tucson after a two week road trip, but changed that with his efforts on the Tucson Arena ice. 

“I try to be as consistent as I can,” Cusanelli said. 

And for the most part, he has been. He’s been the most consistent scorer on the team and it’s not because of a lack of good habits. 

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Despite being a sniper and pure goal-scorer, Cusanelli focuses on all ends of the ice and tries his best to play defense, he said post game. And if things aren’t working in his favor, he’s willing to change things up.  

Cusanelli mentioned that he’d been trying to shoot more since he knew he hadn’t scored in a few games. He makes the changes he needs to improve his game but he doesn’t get in his own head about it. 

“As long as I keep working hard, the goals will come and that’s all that matters,” Cusanelli said. 

Arizona will be on the road for the rest of November, but ‘Cats will have two big games against ASU on Dec. 1 and 2 back home at the Tucson Convention Center. 

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