Thursday, October 20, 2011

York to back up for Blue Jackets

Allen York has been in Joe Louis Arena before.
When he walks into the storied building in lower downtown Detroit tonight, it’ll be quite a bit different for the former Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute goaltender.
He’ll be wearing a National Hockey League uniform.
The Columbus Blue Jackets recalled York on an emergency callup from their American Hockey League farm team in Springfield on Thursday. He’ll back up No. 1 goalie Steve Mason in the Blue Jackets game against the Detroit Red Wings on Friday night.
Though he almost certainly won’t play, unless Mason gets hurt, York is looking forward to donning the Blue Jackets road shirt.
“It’ll be neat, even though I’ll be backing-up,” York said Thursday night from his Detroit hotel room. “I’m looking forward to it.”
York posted a big 4-3 victory over Michigan in the first round of the 2009 Great Lakes Invitational Tournament before he and the Engineers were beaten by Michigan State in the championship game the next night.
“That was a fun night,” York said of the victory over the Wolverines.
York, 21, has gone 1-0-0 with a 2.97 goals-against average and .907 save percentage in two games with Springfield this season.
He sat out two games.
“I hurt my shoulder last Friday,” he said. “But it’s fine now. I just want to get into some games somewhere.”
Mason, a 5-year NHL veteran, hasn’t been spectacular this season with a 3.34 goals against average and .883 saves percentage, but the Blue Jackets, the NHL’s only winless team (0-5-1), are scoring just 2.0 goals per game. Mason would likely get a stretch on the bench but the other goaltenders, Curtis Sanford and former Colgate star Mark Dekanich, are injured.
Blue Jackets Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations and General Manager Scott Howson said the team is “hoping to get (York) some work. Ideally, it would be at Springfield but we’ll see what happens.”
York signed his entry level contract on March 29, 2011 after he and the Engineers had completed the season, his junior year. He was season 18-11-4 with a 2.17 GAA, .924 saves percentage and two shutouts in 34 games with the Engineers.
He was named Third Team All-ECAC after he finished the season ranked third in the league in wins and GAA and fifth in saves percentage. He also appeared in four games with the Falcons at the end of the 2010-11 season, going 3-1-0 with a 2.04 GAA, .926 SV% and one shutout.
A native of Wetaskiwin, Alb., York was the Blue Jackets’ sixth pick, 158th overall, in the 2007 Entry Draft.
He finished his RPI career with a record of 37-33-8, 2.47 GAA, .915 saves percentage and four shutouts in 83 career games. He ranks first all-time at Rensselaer in GAA and is fourth in saves percentage.


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