January 27, 2014 PRINT Bookmark and Share

ECAC Adds to Suspensions in Union-RPI Melee

CHN Staff Report

ALBANY, N.Y. — The ECAC upheld a two-game suspension to Union coach Rick Bennett, and added additional player suspensions, as a result of a post-game melee Saturday in Albany.

After the game, a 2-1 win by Rensselaer over rival Union at the Times Union Center, the teams got involved in an on-ice fight. RPI players had come off the bench to celebrate the win, which contributed to an imbalance of players involved.

RPI coach Seth Appert is seen on video coming out to try to get his players off the ice. As he passes a Union player, Bennett became incensed at Appert and physically went after him.

The following day, Bennett was suspended two games by the school. The ECAC upheld that decision, and declined to add games to it.

ECAC commissioner Steve Hagwell said he conferred with Union before the suspension was announced, and agreed with their decision.

Four players were given game disqualification penalties by the game officials — Union's Mat Bodie and Eli Lichtenweld, and RPI's Luke Curadi and Steve Zalewski.

In today's ruling, Bodie and teammate Daniel Ciampini were given an additional game. The ECAC also added one-game suspensions to RPI's Bo Dolan and Ryan Haggerty for inciting the situation.

Appert did not receive any supplemental discipline.

Hagwell declined to elaborate about his decision-making process.

"It's an unfortunate incident for everyone, and we're certainly not proud of it," Hagwell said.

Although there are a number of videos of the incident circulating on YouTube, the ECAC was also able to review multiple angles from the Times Union Center's in-house video.

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