Hockey teams back in action


Jonathan Burkart, Crier Staff

The crisp sound of newly sharpened skates gliding over the glimmering sheen of freshly Zamboni’d ice; the glorious resonating sound of a puck being slapped right by the opposing goalie; oh yeah, it’s hockey season Saint Anselm. And there is no sport quite so dear to the Granite State as hockey.

The Hawks men’s team started skating their season this past weekend against conference rivals Babson on Friday and Massachusetts-Boston on Saturday. The four-year defending champions of the ECAC Open, the Hawks look to extend that streak despite falling 7 -0 to the Babson Beavers and losing to Massachusetts-Boston Beacons 3-1 on Saturday.

The Hawks have their work cut out for them as they field a team that is half-composed of newcomers. Fifteen newcomers and three goalies vying for the starting spot lead to many questions about the Hawks team this year. However, senior captain Matt Buckley is confident in his squad’s ability to perform with the same tenacity despite so many new faces.

“It’s a good thing,” the team-elected captain explained about having so many freshmen. “They bring a real hardworking skill set because they need to prove themselves.” Buckley added that the freshmen’s tenacity had to come from the upperclassmen on the team. “The upperclassmen need to show the freshmen that they have something to prove.”

Buckley also has optimistic hopes for the program after he graduates. “That’s another benefit of having so many freshmen,” number fourteen explained. “It’s a good way to [establish] a solid corps once they become juniors and seniors.” Buckley also believes that having so many young goalies will benefit the defense.

“We’ll have to work harder to back them up, and that will help the team improve.” Hopefully the Hawks can unite behind their captain’s hopeful attitude and churn out another winning season.

The women’s team is off to another fantastic start. The perennial powerhouses have won the ECAC Open Championship the last three years and captains Alex Kazmer, Franny Nicholson, and Tiffany Herron are eager to bring home the fourth consecutive title. Herron, the senior forward who wears sweater number twenty-seven, stated that trying to keep the programs winning ways was “not pressure, [it’s] motivation.” Senior defender Nicholson agreed, saying, “As seniors we want to cap off four straight years [of winning].”

Women’s hockey differs quite a bit from the men’s. “There is no checking,” explained junior captain Kazmer, “so we make up for it by having better skills.” The women certainly have to play with much more finesse as they cannot clobber their opponents like the men, no matter how tempting it may be. “You have to be able to skate,” number seventeen said with a smile. And skate the women have, cruising their way to a tremendous start to the season.

Like the men, the women have a team built around many younger players. “We lost three big seniors last year,” Nicholson explained. “We have big players that are going to step up.” If the start of their 4 – 0 season is any indication, these younger players will have no problem continuing the women’s winning tradition.

Co-captain Herron agreed with Nicholson, stating that “you don’t have to have a C to be a leader.” It will be exciting to watch new leaders emerge from the future of the program. But on the ice and off the ice, it’s clear to see why these three poised individuals were chosen to command.

The three ladies are very excited for their season and want as many people as possible to come and cheer them on to hopefully yet another title.

Remember to come down to Sullivan Arena to support men’s and women’s hockey as much as you can to cheer our teams to another championship. Go Hawks!