University of Maine freshman center Keif Orsini and defenseman Mike Banwell have both had successful shoulder surgeries recently and should be ready for next season, according to Maine hockey coach Tim Whitehead.
Banwell had his surgery three weeks ago and Orsini had his procedure within the last week, according to Whitehead.
“They are both looking at two- to three-month rehabs,” said Whitehead.
Banwell had two assists while playing in 20 of Maine’s 34 games while Orsini had three goals and two assists in 29 games. Both were hampered by their shoulder injuries but continued to play.
Whitehead also said sophomore center-winger David deKastrozza, who had knee surgery during the season, has been cleared to begin skating and should be ready by the start of dry-land training camp in September.
DeKastrozza had three assists in 21 games two years ago but injured his knee during a preseason captain’s practice and was limited to eight games last season before undergoing season-ending surgery. He had one assist.
“All three players should play significant roles next season,” said Whitehead. “If they’re healthy, they should make an impact.”
Left winger Billy Ryan, who concluded his career this past season and served as an assistant captain, had successful surgery to repair his hip, added Whitehead.
Ryan, a third-round draft pick of the New York Rangers in 2004, was limited to 25 games with his injury last season and had six goals and 10 assists. He concluded his 135-game career with 35 goals and 57 assists for 92 points.
UM men’s soccer schedule listed
The UMaine men’s soccer team will play in two tournaments and will have just seven road trips this season instead of 11 it had last season.
Second-year coach Pat Laughlin likes the schedule and said the University of New Hampshire’s Nike Classic on Aug. 29, 31 (vs. the University of Rhode Island and New York’s Adelphi University, respectively) and the Long Island University Adidas Classic in Brooklyn on Sept. 12 and 14 (vs. LIU and Iona), will provide his team with good tests for their America East schedule.
“Tournaments give you something to play for. They mean something. That’s a good thing for us. It’s a nice challenge for our players,” said Laughlin, who guided the Bears to a 3-13-1 record in his first year, including a season-opening win over eventual Final Four team UMass, after the Bears had gone 0-17 the previous year.
He is pleased they have cut the number of road trips and is excited about the upgrade in scholarship money.
Former coach Travers Evans had fewer than three scholarships in a sport that allows 9.9 but America East mandated an increase in scholarships for the league’s schools and Maine now has 6.5 and will go to 7.5 next year.
“That has made a huge difference. It allows us to look at more high-end players,” said Laughlin, who will have eight starters back and has a large recruiting class coming in.
Maine will play nine of its 17 games at its Alumni Field including a four-game home stand in late September.
The Bears open with an Aug. 19 exhibition game against UMass Lowell and their regular-season opener is Sept. 20 against Northeastern.
UMaine to wrap up fundraising
The UMaine athletic department is heading into the final month of the fiscal year and continues to solicit contributions for the Black Bear Scholarship Fund.
As an incentive, UMaine is offering raffle prizes to those who contribute to the fund between now and June 30.
Those who donate money to the Black Bear Fund will be eligible for prizes including: 2 suite tickets for a 2008-09 UMaine men’s hockey game; 4 suite tickets for a 2008 football game; an authentic UMaine hockey jersey; a $50 gift certificate to Bear Necessities; and football season tickets and parking privileges.
The Black Bear Fund provides critical budgetary support for athletic scholarships that allow UMaine to recruit high-caliber student-athletes. Scholarships cost more than $4.2 million during 2007-08.
Those who wish to make a gift may do so by calling the athletic development office (581-1130) and making a credit card gift, by sending a check or money order to Athletic Development, 5747 Memorial Gymnasium, Orono, ME 04469, or by visiting www.blackbearclub.org and clicking the “Make a Gift” link.