Plagued by injury, food poisoning and a case of being too tough for the refs to handle, the Gannon University men’s club hockey team was faced with the daunting task of playing Penn-State Altoona in the College Hockey East (CHE) championship game in undesirable conditions.
Luckily for Altoona, the Lions were facing a team with different lines and players in unfamiliar positions because that helped them come out victorious in a 7-2 win, winning the CHE championship.
On a positive note, prior to the championship game, the Knights defeated Pitt-Greensburg in the semifinals 7-3, which advanced them to the championship.
Gannon junior standout Johnny Hockey (John Roberts) said the championship game was tough and the team got off to a slow start.
“Hopefully we see them again when we head to the national tournament,” Roberts said. “Beating them would be a major accomplishment.”
Following the loss to Altoona, Gannon and its coach, the Rev. Jason Glover, had to wait the entire spring break for that hotline bling. The hotline lit up on March 6, also known as my birthday, but back to the real story.
Hoping that the Knights’ showing at the CHE championships would be enough to land them a spot at the National College Hockey Association tournament, Glover answered the call.
After talking with the national commissioner, he breathed a sigh of relief – or so I imagine – as he accepted the bid.
Despite losing the CHE championship, the Knights were still able to move onto the big stage later this month and I received an amazing birthday gift. So, thanks guys, I appreciate it.According to Glover, the other teams that will be competing at the next level championships will be Union College (Schenectady, N.Y.), Western Washington University (Bellingham, Wash.), Ventura College (Ventura, Calif.), Penn State-Altoona and University of Buffalo (N.Y.).
This means the Knights could have one more stab at Penn State-Altoona.
The tournament will take place over the weekend of March 24-26, but in the meantime, the team will beat up on some of the alumni who have come through the program.
The Knights will be hosting the annual alumni game at 3:15 p.m. Saturday at Erie Insurance Arena. After the game, the players — young and well, not old, but “removed” — will refuel at Molly Brannigans.
After that, they will cap off the evening at the Erie Otters game at 7 p.m., for the final game of their regular season.
Then the fun begins on Friday, March 24, as your Gannon University Knights take on Union College bright and early at 9 a.m. in Amherst, N.Y.
If you see the guys around, wish them luck and keep up with them on their Facebook page.
On behalf of the Knight staff, good luck!