Judging by the first snowfall of the year coming in October, it is easy to tell that winter is nearly here. With the onslaught of winter weather, the University of Wisconsin–Stout hockey team has been heating up as their season has just begun.
The season began with a 2-1 victory against Trine University and then a 3-3 tie with Aurora University. The UW–Stout hockey team made a 12-hour-long road trip for these matches, playing the first in Indiana on Oct. 27 and then the next night in Illinois.
UW–Stout hockey coach Terry Watkins felt very good about the team’s performances in both games.
“[Our opponents] were both pretty good hockey teams,” said Watkins.
Every season it’s important to have goals for the year, but it is also important to keep your focus on each individual game.
“We want to focus on one game at a time and not look too far ahead. We know we have a lot of talents this year, but we need to focus on getting better every day as a team,” said UW-Stout senior, Ettienne Roy (Sr, Saint-Henri, Que), “It is a short season and a long process to get everyone pulling in the same direction.”
This year’s hockey team is light on seniors, with only two currently on the roster, but Watkins feels that isn’t a problem for the team.
“You’d like to have five or six seniors,” said Watkins, but he would go on to say that the only thing his younger players lack is the college experience, as some of his freshman are already 21 years old.
“These are mature young men,” Watkins said.
Jordan Stejskal (Sr, Grand Rapids, Minn), who has been with the team for four years, feels like he has become a leader for the team this season.
“I definitely feel like being one of the only seniors brings with it an obligation to be a leader. I’m one of two seniors and the only one who has been here for the full four years, so I’ve been around the longest and have the most experience in this program,” Stejskal said. “I’ve always felt that I’m someone who likes to lead by example, so I’m going to try to stay true to that, and hopefully I can do my part to help this team.”