The CSU club hockey team will play a must-win game tonight against top-ranked Utah State at 7 p.m. at the Providence Ice Arena in Windsor. The Rams are currently ranked fourth in the Western Conference and need to maintain that ranking to earn a berth into the American Collegiate Hockey Association national tournament in New York.
“We have to win this game,” said assistant coach Jeremy Jennings. “It’s a must-win, this one and the next game against Weber State.”
The team is coming off a road trip in which it lost two games to the University of Arizona – a Division I team – that dropped the Rams’ record to 12-10-1.
Utah State (16-4-1) is ranked first in the conference and features a strong defense and goaltending. The Aggie team is on a road trip of its own and will travel to Fort Collins after playing in Boulder and then move on to play the University of Wyoming.
The Rams battled the Aggies in their first game of the season, but lost 3-1 in Utah. However, the Rams feel they are a much-improved team since the start of the season when they stumbled out of the gates to a 0-3 record.
The Rams will be aided by the addition of several new players including Josh Bowels, a forward who will be on the power play, and Aaron Gaddis in goal.
“We’re going to have to concentrate on defense,” said team captain Chris Lockrem. “And with the new players we should be fine. The offense should take care of itself.” n