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BN Rinkside: Catching up with WNYers in Division I

It’s holiday break in the college hockey world with just a smattering of games. That gives us an opportunity to catch up with some Western New York players at the Division I men’s level. And you can check out the photo gallery at The Buffalo News website.

Joe Zarbo (Grand Island). The senior forward leads Clarkson in scoring with 10 points. His six goals at the break match his season total from last year. The Golden Knights are 6-8-4 overall, 4-1-2 in the ECAC.

Andrew Poturalski (Williamsville). The freshman forward had four goals and 10 points in his first 16 collegiate games for New Hampshire. The Wildcats are 5-10-1 overall and 1-5-1 in the Hockey East.

Sean Malone (West Seneca). The sophomore forward and sixth-round draft pick of the Sabres in 2013 missed the first 10 games of the season with an undisclosed injury. He made quite a splash in his two games back, netting two goals with two assists. Harvard is 9-1-2 overall and ranked fourth in the latest national poll.

Andrew Black (Buffalo). In 15 games the sophomore forward (and son of Sabres’ president Ted Black) has two goals and five points for Colgate. The Raiders (9-6-1) are ranked 16th in the country.

Alex Iafallo (Eden). Playing on the top line for Minnesota-Duluth, the sophomore forward has 13 points (three goals, 10 assists) and a plus-10 rating in 18 games. The Bulldogs (12-6-0) are ranked seventh and are receiving first-place votes in the poll.

Christian Lampasso (Amherst). Still looking for his first collegiate goal for Ohio State, the freshman forward has four assists in 12 games. The Buckeyes (5-9-1) play Mercyhurst at the Erie Insurance Arena Jan. 2-3 in the inaugural Snowtown Throwdown.

Nick DeSimone (East Amherst). A former member of the Buffalo Jr. Sabres, the freshman defender went to defending national champ Union this year. In 13 games he has two assists for the Dutchmen (9-6-1).

Chris Bradley (Williamsville). The junior defenseman has three points in 14 games for Rensselaer (6-12-1 overall, 4-4-0 ECAC).

Both Canisius and Niagara have several Western New Yorkers on their rosters.

For the Griffs, their four local players are all former members of the Buffalo Jr. Sabres.

Freshmen Nolan Sheeran (East Amherst) had nine points (2-7) while freshman Ryan Schmelzer (Buffalo) has eight points (2-6). Senior Matthew Grazen (Clarence) has three goals while sophomore Josh Kielich has three points.

The Purple Eagles have five local players on their roster. Senior Sam Alfieri (Buffalo) has one assist as does sophomore Patrick Conte (Niagara Falls). Sophomore defenseman Vince Muto (Niagara Falls) was injured in the second game of the season while freshman defender Lawrence Smith (Grand Island) has two assists in 13 games. Junior goalie Chris Paulin (Lockport) played in one game, getting the start against St. Lawrence. He was pulled after letting in the first four goals of a 10-2 loss.

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