West Chester hockey is back and the Golden Rams are off to a strong start this season. The men’s hockey team opened up the season with three straight wins, outscoring their opponents a combined 17-5 in those three games. They come off an impressive season a year ago, in which they won the Division I Eastern Collegiate Hockey Association championship.
The hockey team is a part of the club sports program here at West Chester University. Club sports provide athletes with an opportunity to play the sports they love at a competitive and recreational level. West Chester’s club sports are all ran and funded by students, and team members will have to pay a fee each year in order to participate. Other club sports that are available to students include rugby, lacrosse, field hockey, ultimate frisbee, bowling and volleyball. The price to play these sports varies, and for hockey it costs $75 to try out for a spot on the team, and $100 to participate in camp along with the tryouts.
Training camp for the team was held on Aug. 21 to 22, while tryouts for newcomers were held on Aug. 28 and 29. This year, West Chester kept a total of 27 players on the team. They are hopeful that the talent on their roster can replicate the team’s success from a year ago.
The Golden Rams have a very competitive schedule on their hands this season. They play a total of 29 regular season games on the year against local opponents such as Temple, Drexel, Pittsburgh, Lehigh, Navy and Villanova. Games are only played on weekends, and the team is given a break during the holiday break. The regular season is scheduled to come to a close in late February. They will face off against Navy twice this season, and this will feature a rematch of the championship from a year ago — so this will be a highly anticipated matchup for both sides.
The team plays their games at Ice Line, a hockey arena located on Lawrence Drive in West Chester. Ice Line is home to the Philadelphia Junior Flyers, as well as the West Chester Women’s hockey team. Fans will have an opportunity to see the team play on home ice 15 times this season. The first home game was held on September 20 against Indiana University of Pennsylvania and the team’s final home game will be held on February 21 against Villanova University.
If you are in need of something to do on the weekends, check out the West Chester University hockey games. Fans should be excited about the future of West Chester hockey as it is in great hands. Each year, the team continues to build a solid foundation of athletes to compete for a championship. The team has added depth this year through a strong first-year class, and figures to make another deep run in the playoffs. Good luck to all the athletes this season.
Erick Klambara is a first-year student majoring in media and cultures. EK924666@wcupa.edu