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ARCOBELLO EXPERIENCED FAST START AND SUCCESS IN ROOKIE SEASON
By Chris Wescott,It didn’t take long for fans to notice Mark Arcobello. Although he doesn’t stick out on the ice with his size, standing at just 5-9 and weighing in at 165 pounds, the forward from Milford, CT made a big impact on the Barons in his rookie season.
Arcobello began the year in OKC at the Barons' training camp. After a solid preseason, the young forward was assigned to the Stockton Thunder of the East Coast Hockey League.
He spent most of the season with Stockton, playing in 33 games, scoring seven goals and 13 assists while earning MVP honors in the league's All-Star Game.
Arcobello was recalled from loan to the Thunder on February 3. Oklahoma City was in the midst of a crucial playoff push and needed a boost to overcome a mass of call-ups to Edmonton.
In his 26 games with the Barons, Arcobello scored 11 goals and added 11 assists and proved an integral part of the team’s eventual playoff berth.
“It obviously didn’t finish up as quite exactly as we planned,” Arcobello said. “You always want to go as far as possible and win the championship but I think we made a great, late push late in the year to make the playoffs and we showed some good signs of progress for the future.”
Being thrown right into the fire in his first year of professional hockey was quite an experience for the former Yale star.
“It definitely made for an eventful year, my first year pro. I’m just lucky to get that opportunity to play at this level and to play with some of the best guys on the team at a pretty key moment of the season. Definitely thankful for that and lucky it worked out the way it did.”
Arcobello played for Yale University for four seasons, registering 49 goals and 67 assists in 131 games.
Arcobello’s resume doesn’t indicate a knack for scoring on the man advantage, but with OKC, his role and production expanded. Arcobello netted four power-play goals in Barons uniform.
“I played a little bit at the point in Stockton,” Arcobello said. “I played the point on the power play in college, pretty much all throughout college. So it wasn’t really new to me but at this level it was definitely something I needed to get used to at first. But it worked out.”
The young winger contributed in the playoffs as well. He scored one goal and added an assist in the Barons’ six-game series against the Hamilton Bulldogs.
Arcobello's performance did not go unnoticed and the Edmonton Oilers signed him to a two-year entry level contract on April 1, locking him down within the organization for the foreseeable future. With that in mind, Mark is gearing up for his offseason preparations.
“I’ll probably take a little time off. A couple of weeks to just kind of get home, get settled and once I’m settled and ready for the summer I’m going to get back to working out and training and get ready for next year."
Arcobello looks ahead to what he hopes is his first full season on the American Hockey League level, or maybe even higher than that. All he can hope for right now is a fast start reminiscent of the one he experienced in OKC.
“I’d definitely like to start this season off the way I kind of started off the year in Oklahoma. So hopefully it will be the same kind of transition from summer to the hockey season.”
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