The Stevenson University men’s ice hockey team battled all season, but the season came to an end after a long, hard-fought game against Lebanon Valley College on Feb. 16.he team finished with a 10-15 record overall, and a 7-11 record in the United Collegiate Hockey Conference (UCHC). The Mustangs also finished with a 3-5 record in the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC).
The team “struggled early in the season but were able to get on a roll going into the second half of the season,” said senior forward Austin Swingle. The rest of the season was a roller coaster, marking key wins as well as losses. “The team plays hard, but the key is consistency and being able to flip the page every day,” said head coach Dominick Dawes.
This season tested the players’ toughness with injuries coming at crucial parts in the year. Swingle said that the team was faced with a number of big-minute players being out because of injuries.
Going into the last four games of the season, the Mustangs were in control of their own destiny. On Feb. 8, Stevenson shut out Nazareth to gain three points in the conference standings. The team lost the next contest to Utica College in the regular season home finale on Feb. 9.
Although the Mustangs lost that game, they were still in the driver’s seat coming into the final weekend of the season. The team fell short to Elmira College on Feb. 15, despite four different Mustangs scoring.
With one more game to go in the season, playoff hopes were still alive since Manhattanville College won their contest over Neumann who held the six seed in the conference
The Mustangs’ season came down to the last game against Lebanon Valley. The teams were tied for seventh place in the UCHC, and the winner would move up to the sixth seed and on to the playoffs. The team received the short end of the stick, losing 4-2.
The win against Wilkes University may have been the most memorable game of the season, according to freshman forward Ryan Patrick. Being the No. 1 team in the conference, Wilkes was favored in the match-up. The Mustangs played a confident and focused game to beat Colonels. “This grew not only my confidence, but the teams’, and allowed us to believe that were going to make the playoffs,” said Patrick.
Looking to the 2019-2020 season, the team will keep their same goal in mind, a MAC championship.