Head Coach Joe Sharrock said at the beginning of the season that he wanted to make CSU hockey games exciting for the fans and players on Friday and Saturday nights.
“The point this season is to make hockey games the place to be, I feel like we have a good fan base right now and want to expand on that,” Sharrock said last August.
Starting tonight and through the weekend, Edora Pool and Ice Center will be the place to be.
CSU hockey is hosting the Western Classic Tournament over the weekend. Competition and quality hockey is expected as the top three teams in the West region will be on display.
No. 2 CSU (10-3-1) will see No. 3 Eastern Washington (9-0-0) as well as Nebraska (2-6-0) in Pool A. Colorado-Boulder (11-1-1), which sits atop the West rankings at this point in the season, will be the headlining team of Pool B, and will be joined by New Mexico (0-2-0) and Idaho (5-3-0).
“We have had a hard week of practice coming off the Montana State game,” said senior defenseman Jordan Stover. “We made a couple changes to our lines and have worked a lot on schemes and power plays.”
CSU beat Montana State 3-1 and comes into the weekend having won six straight matches. They have not played any of the five teams that will be visiting Fort Collins yet this season, but will open December with a home-and-home series with Colorado-Boulder.
“We played against New Mexico last year, so we kind of know what they’re about,” said Stover. “The other teams, we need to go out and just play hockey. We will see CU again; we play them next after the tournament.”
CSU will play tonight at 7:45 p.m. on the main rink against the Eastern Washington Eagles – one of two games being played at EPIC. The Eagles are unbeaten on the year, having given up less than two goals per game and scoring over nine.
“Eastern Washington is undefeated, so they obviously can’t be taken lightly,” Stover said. “Even when they beat the weaker teams, they beat them solidly, so that tells us that they’re a disciplined team.”
The other rink will feature Colorado-Boulder taking on Idaho at 7:30 p.m. All other pool play games will be on Saturday, and the placement games will be played on Sunday.
The tournament will continue through Sunday with the first place game scheduled for 3:30 pm.
Tickets for the tournament will be day passes and can be purchased at EPIC.
Fri. $5 ($3 student)
Sat. $8 ($6 student)
Sun $8 ($6 student)
Weekend $18 ($14 student)
For a complete schedule and more details on the tournament and the team, go to lamar.colostate.edu/~ramhoky.
Staff writer Aaron Schoonmaker can be reached at email@example.com.