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The Northerner

Hockey club begins season

Tim Bonfield

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Northern Kentucky University’s Hockey Club begins a new season after going 14-10 in its first season.

After losing the first five games, the Norse went on to win 14 out of the last 19 games. The team captain, Scott Hicks, is returning and looking for action.

The first two games of this season were victories against Vanderbilt University. The scores of the games were 9-2 and 7-6, with the second game going into overtime. The Norse gave up five unanswered goals in the third period, but still managed to come out on top.

The rest of the upcoming season is going to test the Norse in every aspect. “We have some tough teams to go up against,” Hicks said. “University of Tennessee, University of Middle Tennessee and Wright State University are all going to be contenders.”

The returning team is ready to play anyone this year. They practice hard and they are supported by some of the best coaching staff such as Head Coach Andy Pokupec, who played hockey at the University of Alaska-Fairbanks and also had extensive coaching experience at Moeller High School of Cincinnati and University of Miami of Oxford.

The Norse plays its home games at Northern Kentucky Ice Center, which is located on Anderson Road, off Buttermilk Pike, in Covington, Ky. The next two home games will be played at NKIC on Oct. 27 and 28 at 10 p.m. against Xavier University. “NKIC is somewhat like a small barn, and it can get really loud,” Hicks said. “Whenever we play University of Cincinnati, 200 fans for both teams pack NKIC, and the atmosphere is absolutely great.”

Although the Norse Hockey Club is rather new to the NKU community, it has made a social impact by promoting the club on campus in front of the University Center. Also, at the NKIC, the team hosts instructional classes about ice skating and ice hockey for 3 to 10-year-olds.

The team hopes with the sales of merchandise, public relations and dedication to the Norse Hockey Club it can reach varsity status within a few years. It isn’t at that status yet because this is only its second year running and it is going to take more than that to convince the athletic department and University to make it a varsity sport.

It can compete with Division I schools and one day the Norse hopes it will find a top spot in the National Rankings and be a varsity-status sport.

So, to the fellow students in the NKU community, if there seems to be nothing to do on a Friday or Saturday night, and seeing somebody getting checked up against the glass tickles your fancy, stop by NKIC and support the hockey team. It is the Norse’s second season and it will be very physical.

Visit nkuhockey.com for more information on the team.

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The Independent Student Newspaper of Northern Kentucky University.
Hockey club begins season