UMD’s Ben Patt to Make First Career Start as Ryan Fanti Enters COVID Protocols
Patt has mostly served as UMD's third goalie and has only appeared in a few exhibition games, most recently a scoreless first period against Wisconsin back in October.
DULUTH, Minn. – At Wednesday’s weekly press conference, UMD men’s hockey head coach Scott Sandelin revealed that Wyatt Kaiser and Ryan Fanti will be out this week due to COVID protocols. It’s tough news for Fanti, who was named NCHC Goaltender of the Month. So who’s stepping in? A locker room favorite.
Fifth-year senior Ben Patt will make his first career start Friday night when the Bulldogs face off against Northern Michigan. The Brampton, Ontario native says it’s unfortunate to see what happened with his goalie partners, but he’s still very excited for his chance in the crease.
“I even told Ryan “Listen, the reality is you have a little bit of time off. I’ll give you a little bit of a break and you can rest up for next week. I’ll take care of things this weekend. And then we’ll hit the ground running next week.” We had a little bit of a good laugh about it. But yeah, absolutely exciting. There’s no doubt about it,” Patt said.
Patt has mostly served as UMD’s third goalie and has only appeared in a few exhibition games, most recently a scoreless first period against Wisconsin back in October.
“There’s been situations for him that he’s probably been disappointed where he feels like he’s ready. But he’s fought through those and continued to get better as a goaltender. You can’t say enough about him as a teammate. He’s very vocal. He’s very supportive. He brings a lot of energy. That’s just his competitive nature,” said head coach Scott Sandelin.
“I’ve tried every week to prepare like I could play, and in reality, you never know what could happen. So I’m treating this week exactly like I would’ve and I know a little bit earlier that I will be getting the call so I’m excited for it and want to go in there and give these guys a great chance to win both games Friday, Saturday,” Patt said.
Sandelin added that Fanti is expected to be available next week for UMD’s series against Denver.