By Shoshana Burrus
Arizona Daily Wildcat October 28, 1996
If the Arizona Icecats had something to prove this weekend against Stanford, it was the dominance of their offense.
The Icecats were in Cardinal goalie Sami Jo Small's face all night Saturday, unleashing 84 shots on goal. If not for a spectacular performance by Small, Stanford may have been blasted by more than the eventual 8-1 final score. Small stopped 76 shots.
Icecat senior forward Brian Consolino said getting the puck in the net against Small was tougher than it had been in Friday's game, when sophomore Nick Flores started in the net and the Icecats cruised to a 15-0 win.
"She's definitely the better of the two," Consolino said. "She made some great saves and you've got to give her all the credit in the world."
Stanford's visit to Tucson seemed doomed from the beginning, when the flight that part of the team was on was cancelled because of weather problems, forcing the Cardinal to play with only seven skaters and two goalies in Friday's game.
The rest of the Stanford team arrived Saturday, suiting up 14 of the 21 players on their roster. Still, having more players didn't help the Cardinal offense, which managed just five shots on Icecat freshman goalie Beau LeMire.
Icecats coach Leo Golembiewski said that although the Icecats were able to use all three lines in a total rotation for most of the game, he was disappointed with the team's shot discrimination.
"I wasn't real happy with some of our shooting selection," he said. "I think that will be the accent of practice this week."
Golembiewski may have been unhappy with the choice of shots, but the quickness of senior forward Brian Consolino paid off.
"Consolino has always been a scorer," Golembiewski said.
A scorer he was, finishing with a hat trick each night and a total of seven goals for the weekend.
"It's just a confidence builder," Consolino said. "I had quality chances and fortunately they were going in. It's just a big boost for the start of the season."
The Icecats' first goal came from freshman Joe McCaffrey at 8:07 in the first period.
Fifty-three seconds later, Consolino connected on a pass from Joel Nusbaum, giving the Icecats a 2-0 lead to open the second period.
Golembiewski said the team, with the help of Consolino, Ben Ruston, Josh Flett and Dave Weiss, is extremely fast.
"This is one of the quickest teams we've had in awhile," he said. "You've got to be impressed with the speed of the line."
The Icecats' quickness continued into the second period, when Flett scored at the 3:34 mark. Consolino and freshman Tommy Thompson also scored.
But even with their eight goals, Golembiewski said the Icecats did not adjust well to the slot of Stanford's defense.
"They clogged up the middle," he said. "We didn't really adapt to that as well as we have to."
The third period scoring continued for the Icecats, with goals by Ruston, Consolino and co-captain Peter Scott.
LeMire's inactive net wasn't a true test for the freshman, who said he is eager to receive more shots.
"It was terrible," he said. "I'm so anxious to get in there and get an even amount of shots. It was hard not to zone out."
LeMire said he is excited to face Colorado this weekend and hopes he will start at goalie and face more competition.
"I can only practice so much," he said. "I want to get into a game situation where I'm really into it and in a good mindset."
It may take more than a good mindset to face an experienced Colorado team, which has only four underclassmen.
The Icecats will face the Buffaloes at the Tucson Convention Center on Friday and Saturday night at 7:30.
"We're going to have to adjust to a stronger Colorado offense," Golembiewski said. "They're a very physical team and we have to prepare for them."