There were just five minutes left in the contest. Save for its gasps, the Lynah Faithful was stricken by an uncharacteristic silence. Then junior forward Denis Ladouceur, one of the Red’s most potent forwards lay on the ice immobilized. As trainer Ed Kelly rushed out to tend to the fallen player, it became apparent that the injury was serious. The image of Ladouceur limping off the ice with assistance was one that would haunt the team and its supporters for the better part of the season. Ladouceur’s broken ankle was the start of an injury bug that became an injury epidemic for the Red. An anemic offense became completely debilitated losing Ladouceur along with now senior David Kozier as well as current juniors forward Matt McRae and defenseman Doug Murray, the heart of the Red’s prolific power play unit.
Cornell’s ability to establish a legitimate offense this year will invariably depend on the team’s resistance to injuries. Beginning its season with its full complement of offensive weapons offers the Red an opportunity it was not able to enjoy last season.
Kozier and McRae have had a convincing preseason, with McRae perhaps turning in one of his top performances on East Hill with a two goal, two assist performance in last Saturday’s exhibition against Wilfrid Laurier. Fortunately for the Red, its top six scorers return including junior captain Stephen B