Salisbury University Ice Hockey clutched its first Delaware Valley College Hockey Conference (DVCHC) win against Neuman University Oct. 1 amid a busy season of traveling and fundraising.
Student manager Madalynn McQuarrie and player Andrew Landry arranged the team's first annual "Pink the Rink" fundraiser, selling snacks and wristbands for breast cancer awareness during a home game against Penn State Harrisburg.
“We planned this because we have personal ties to breast cancer, and so do fans,” McQuarrie said.
The manager, who helps the team with fundraising, filling out scoresheets and publicity, said the game was a good way to “raise money and get [SUIH's] name out there,” drawing in over $500 from fans sporting pink in the stands.
“It is really fun to watch the guys play, McQuarrie said. "The atmosphere is great.”
Players attended Nationals in West Chester last year but fell in day three to the University of Central Florida.
Right wing Spencer Tonko said the team has made changes this season to reclaim national victory, including 8 p.m. workouts at the Ice Gulls' home rink – Centre Ice Arena in Harrington, Delaware.
The team previously practiced at 10 or 11 p.m. “in the middle of nowhere, Delaware,” right wing George Sherikjian said.
“It’s pretty brutal”, he said. “Every player pays for our own gas to drive an hour and 10 minutes, and home games aren’t even home. Away games are worse, but we play for the love of the game.”
Sherikjian said distance and scheduling conflicts caused the team to fall behind competitors who began training in August.
“In this conference, anyone can beat anyone," Tonko said. "You never know if you will win or loose the next game."
Tonko said the team is taking on the season “with incoming freshman talent and some momentum," looking to bring home more conference wins from the DVCHC East Coast Showdown Nov. 18-20 in Philadelphia.
By HAILEY DEARES
Featured image courtesy of Ashley Remz