By Mike Anderson
The Saint Mary’s University men’s hockey team is looking to find success for the first time in a long time. The team returns a group of seniors that are experienced and motivated to turn the tide. Last year the Cardinals found themselves near a playoff spot only to get swept by Concordia the last weekend of the season. The team finished with an overall 8-16-1 record, their best under Bill Moore, but certainly not a good season.
The Cardinals have talent with Bobby Thompson and Austin Balko returning after being
named to the honorable mention All-MIAC team. They will have to make up for the loss of their leading scorer Mike Hill. The team returns 10 seniors that have had a rough first three years here. They are a talented bunch that just hasn’t been able to put together any type of a consistent effort.
With a team that has all but two forwards and one defensemen returning from last year’s team their
biggest question mark is in net. The past four years Jason Hortsman and Andy Schieb have tended net for the Cardinals. This year, the reins appear to be in Christian Gaffy’s hands. Gaffy, who transferred here from UMD last year, is a solid goaltender that should supply the Cardinals with a steady presence in net.
Overall, the Cardinals have the talent and depth to have a successful season; it is just a matter of putting guys in the right place.
The Cardinals will begin their season Nov. 1 and 3 in the MIAC Showcase in Blaine, Minn. Their first home game is against last season’s Co-MIAC regular season champion, St. Thomas on Nov. 8. That night will also be Veterans Appreciation Night at Saint Mary’s Ice Arena.