ICE HOCKEY: Tigers head east for nationals

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CLEVELAND — The Edwardsville ice hockey crew started its 8-hour road journey to suburban Cleveland Wednesday morning, and it hopes to go back the early following week with hardware. The Tigers are making their fourth consecutive appearance within the U.S. National Ice Hockey Tournament, which starts with pool play Thursday and runs via Monday with the championship sport scheduled for 9 a.M. “The men are amazing excited,” Edwardsville train Jason Walker stated. The Tigers left Edwardsville High School at 8:30 a.M. Wednesday via three trucks and anticipated to practice Wednesday night time before commencing play Thursday. “I’m in reality excited. I woke up a touch bit in advance, that’s bizarre for me. The boys were talking approximately this for a long time. We’ve installed quite a few practices and difficult paintings. Today’s the day of. We’re on the brink of going away, and that is thrilling,” Edwardsville senior Connor Hinterser stated.

Unlike its experience to suburban Cleveland in 2017, when EHS superior to the semifinals, the 2019 tournament could be performed in Strongsville, that’s placed 20 miles southwest of downtown Cleveland. The match video games years ago had been completed in Mentor and Gates Mills, each located east of downtown. The Tigers are within the Olympic Pool Play with Bishop O’Connell (Virginia), Illiana champion Lake Central Blue (Indiana) and state champion Viewmont (Utah). Edwardsville opens towards Viewmont, Utah, at nine:30 a.M. Thursday (vital time), observed through Bishop O’Connell at 8:15 a.M. Friday and Lake Central Blue at 6:30 p.M. Saturday. All three video games can be played at OBM Arena in Strongsville. “We are going to be going up in opposition to the country champs from Utah right off the bat. It will be a good check,” Walker said. “Being in this match earlier than, we’ve played Lake Central earlier than and we’ve played groups from the identical league as (Bishop O’Connell).” Edwardsville advanced to the tournament’s quarterfinals in 2016 when the match became played in suburban Washington D.C. and the semifinals in 2017. Last yr, the Tigers completed zero-2-1 in Plymouth, Minn., a suburb of Minneapolis. The Tigers ended their Mid-State season with a 6-3 loss to De Smet inside the 0.33 game of the Challenge Cup round-robin playoffs. “It feels love it’s been forever for the reason that we finally played a recreation. With the practices the last month and going to this event, absolutely everyone is honestly excited,” Walker stated. Edwardsville ended with a 6-14-3 record, its fewest amount of wins considering that joining the league at the begin of the 2016-17 season.
EHS played in the Municipal Conference, which includes Midwest powers CBC, De Smet, Chaminade, and Saint Louis University High. “I don’t assume all and sundry could be greater battle-examined than us when it comes to the schedule we play. What which means for us, we’ll see,” Walker said. “I don’t think there is a better league around.” Six of Edwardsville’s pinnacle seven scorers will return next season, which includes juniors Sam Gibbons (11 goals, five assists) and Justin Harper (seven dreams, eight assists). With some professional scorers returning following season, Walker believes the journey to Cleveland may be useful. “To play the level of opposition on this match, it’s far simplest going to intend appropriate matters for this software,” Walker said. Senior Kyle Meehan became the team’s main scorer with 12 desires, while Mitchell Oberlag (3 goals, six assists) and Hinterser (5 dreams, three assists), setting together strong very last seasons. Senior goalie Mason Young, the Intelligencer MVP, published a 4.02 dreams-in opposition to average with a .874 shot percentage. He performed all but one sport for EHS and confronted the second-most photographs within the league and made the most saves. The upcoming appearance in the match permits for the senior elegance to play collectively one last time. Seniors encompass Jack Sumner, Eric Leggitt, Logan Corzine, Matthew Kocarnik, Tyler Berry, Hinterser, Andrew LaRose, Young, Oberlag and Meehan. “There is not any higher exclamation factor than going and having a truly right group attempt. You don’t need it to stop, but we are glad we got into nationals,” Hinterser said. “For me in my opinion, I couldn’t think about a better manner to quit this than with a trip together with your buddies.”

Walker echoed his senior’s remark. “For this group to play in one final event,” Walker stated, “it’s going to be unique.”

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