Kasdorf Anchors Engineers' Expectations
Goaltender Jason Kasdorf carries a lot of weight on his shoulders. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has a chance to finish first in ECAC Hockey for the first time since 1984-85, when the Engineers won a second straight title (they were a combined 37-4-0 in league play those two seasons) en route to the 1985 NCAA championship. Rensselaer’s outstanding depth at forward and veteran corps of defensemen are big assets to be sure, but another strong season from Kasdorf seems essential in the ECAC, with its four or five other strong contenders. Kasdorf doesn’t mind the pressure; he barely feels it. “It’s a bit of pressure,” he said, “but I try not to think about it. A lot of the stuff (Kasdorf’s ECACH Rookie of the Year Award and other honors, the acclaim the team has garnered) was from last year. “That’s last year. This is a new year,” he said. “Our team’s going in with the some mentality as we always do — working every day to get better and we know that the results will take care of themselves.” Kasdorf took over as the team’s No. 1 goaltender just before midseason last year. He posted a 14-5-2 record, 1.62 goals against average and 93.5 percent saves percentage. In ECAC play he was even better; 12-2-2, 1.39, 94.5 percent. He said that coming into preseason camp as the No. 1 didn’t change his preparation. “Nothing’s changed from last year, going into this year,” the Winnipeg, Man. native said. “I go in with the same mentality of working every day trying to get better. That’s were the (good) results come from, working every day with a purpose and trying to get better, so when game time comes, you’re fully prepared.” “I think one of the big things,” is mentally,” he said. “I’m a much mentally stronger. I think my movements have gotten a lot better from when I first got here, until now. And then there are just some minor things that I’ve worked on with (head) coach (Seth) Appert but my movement and my mental toughness are the two biggest ones.” Kasdorf thought for five or six seconds when asked if there was one area of goaltending in which he most needs to improve. He wasn’t being arrogant — he couldn’t single one out. “We work on everything all the time. Things I’m good at, so I keep those habits,” he said. “We work on every aspect (of goaltending).” Appert said Kasdorf has “come a long way. His work ethic is very high, so he comes to the rink every day with a very good mentality of how to get better. There’s a lot of purpose to what he does; not just coming here (to practice) and putting time in, but putting quality of time in; real high level of commitment to his daily habits that, combined with his work ethic and his humility, has really allowed him to have a lot of success.” Kasdorf was asked if could possibly repeat his 94.5 saves percentage this season and it was suggested that if he could, and didn’t miss much time with injury, RPI would win the regular-season title. “It’s possible,” he said, “but it’s not thinking about or focusing on. I know that stats say a little bit but I can have a (lower) saves percentage and still have a better year.” For more on this article written by the The Record Click Here.