With the UAB Hockey season underway, we were able to catch up with team president Yves Cordeau.
UAB hockey is just in it’s second year of existence, and they started off the year with an 8-6 win over Auburn. Here is a schedule for the rest of the year, and the current roster.
Q: In just the second year, what are some areas you hope to improve on this year? What are some things you learned from last year?
Yves Cordeau: Our primary goal since last year is to establish ourselves as a true competitor among nearby schools and the ACHA (American Collegiate Hockey Association). We aim to be seen as a member of UAB Athletics first and a club second. With our larger and more intense schedule we hope to establish a greater presence with our competition.
Since last year we have been able to deepen our roster with experienced players. Additionally, our veteran coaching staff has been able to decipher our strengths and weaknesses and plan accordingly.
Since last year we have been able to improve not only the depth of our roster, but also the level of commitment we expect from each of our players.
Q: Who are some of the key players on offense to keep an eye on?
YC: We are lucky to have Jakob Hornsby, Ryan Kalson, and Adil Patel returning from last year; they were our leading scorers last season and are sure to continue to have a huge impact. We’ve brought on some new recruits this year, including Cam Dickinson who was crucial in our win over Auburn this past weekend. Other players to watch out for are Steven Stevens and Cameron Fulgenzi.
Q: Who are some of the key contributors on defense?
YC: We’re proud to announce that Ian Maisonville has returned from his injury last year and will be back on the ice as a defenseman. Ian tore his ACL in a questionable knee-to-knee impact against LSU last year in our opening game. His injury will have been one year ago to the day since our home opener against LSU next week. Other names to watch out for include Patrick Flanagan and Luke Ciocca. Of course, no defense would be complete without our goalies Austin Smith and Aaron Roe, both of whom have carried us to victories against decorated teams.
Q: For those who have never experienced a UAB hockey game, tell us why you think they should? What makes UAB hockey games so exciting for fans (other than cheering for your school)?
YC: There’s no comparison between a hockey game on T.V. versus one in person. The first difference is the sound. When a player hits the boards in front of the crowd the resounding energy is palpable. When the puck rings off a goal pipe everyone’s heart skips a beat. There’s no substitute for real hockey and our club is no different. Once a new fan experiences a live hockey game it’ll be a new fix they just can’t satisfy anywhere else.
Q: The season started out great with a win over Auburn, how do you carry that momentum into the rest of the season?
YC: This was, of course, a great way to start. However, every player here also knows that this is just the beginning of a very challenging season. We didn’t book our competition lightly. As a result, we can’t let ourselves see past the next game. Each week brings on a new level of competition and we will not let previous results get in the way of our training.
Q: Are there any playoffs or conference games that fans need to be aware of?
YC: Unfortunately, due to the youth of our program, we are not eligible for any post-season competition. Our goals include eligibility for 2018/2019 playoffs.