Club Sports News

Challenging 2013-14 schedule awaits Liberty's DII men

July 9, 2013  |  Lynchburg, Va. 

Rising junior forward John Cotton skates up ice in front of returning sophomore goalie Nick Devine in a game last season at the LaHaye Ice Center.  test test test test
Rising junior forward John Cotton skates up ice in front of returning sophomore goalie Nick Devine in a game last season at the LaHaye Ice Center.

Playing on its home ice should provide Liberty University's Division II men's hockey team a significant advantage at the start of the 2013-14 season and in the final stretch before the playoffs.

The Flames will host their first eight games this fall, starting with weekend series against two junior programs — the Atlanta Knights (Sept. 6-7) and Hampton Whalers (Sept. 13-14) — before wrapping up their regular season with 12 consecutive dates at the LaHaye Ice Center.

Altogether, Liberty will host 24 of the 33 games on its schedule, which includes 20 contests against teams that ended last season ranked in the top 15 in the American Collegiate Hockey Association's DII Southeast Region.

"We'll have seven games to prepare for Bowling Green, our first real tough team," Flames head coach Chris Lowes said. "From there, our schedule just takes off and we really get into the meat of it where we don't have any light weekends."

Highlights include Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Hockey Association South Division games against top rival and defending MACHA tournament champion Virginia Tech, in an away-home series Oct. 18 and 19, and home and away contests Nov. 2 and Nov. 8, respectively, against Maryland. The 10th-seeded Terrapins ended fourth-seeded Liberty's season in the semifinal round of the ACHA DII Southeast Regional tournament, a day after eliminating third-seeded University of Maryland Baltimore County.

The Flames also play away and home games against UMBC (Nov. 9, Jan. 25) and MACHA South newcomer Delaware (Nov. 10, Jan. 24).

"In the Mid-Atlantic, all the South teams and the majority of the North are ranked in the top 15 so playing our league schedule prepares us well for what we'll be facing at regionals," Lowes said.

New to the schedule this year are four games against 2012 ACHA DII national champion Florida Gulf Coast University (Oct. 25-26 away; Jan. 17-18 home).

"They're a perennial powerhouse, though they had an off year last year," Lowes said.

Other top-15 teams on the slate include Rider, Rowan, Penn State, and Temple.

"I'm really excited," said Lowes, who anticipates the Flames will be one of the top contenders in both the MACHA South and ACHA Southeast. "We did graduate five players that will be tough to replace, but we're very excited about the incoming freshmen recruits that we have. It looks like we're adding depth and skill at every position — forward, defense, and goaltending."

He anticipates having a young and extremely talented nucleus to build around.

"We're still very young, but we have a lot of experience back," said Lowes, who only projects one senior to be on this year's roster, which will be finalized after the Aug. 18-23 tryouts. "I expect the sophomore class to really step up and play a larger role. We're excited to watch the guys compete for their positions at tryouts and for ice time during the season."


2013-14 DII men's hockey schedule

(Home games in bold)

Sept. 6 Atlanta Knights

Sept. 7 Atlanta Knights

Sept. 13 Hampton Whalers

Sept. 14 Hampton Whalers

Sept. 20 Elon

Sept. 21 Millersville

Sept. 27 Christopher Newport

Sept. 28 Bowling Green

Oct. 4 at Pittsburgh

Oct. 5 at West Virginia

Oct. 11 Temple

Oct. 12 Temple

Oct. 18 at Virginia Tech

Oct. 19 Virginia Tech 

Oct. 25 at Florida Gulf Coast

Oct. 26 at Florida Gulf Coast

Nov. 2 Maryland

Nov. 3 St. Joseph's

Nov. 8 at Maryland

Nov. 9 at UMBC

Nov. 10 at Delaware

Nov. 16 Rider

Nov. 22 Division II Showcase (Ohio, Monmouth, N.C. State)

Dec. 6 Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Dec. 7 Indiana University of Pennsylvania

Jan. 10 Penn State

Jan. 11 West Virginia

Jan. 17 Florida Gulf Coast

Jan. 18 Florida Gulf Coast

Jan. 24 Delaware

Jan. 25 UMBC

Jan. 31 Pittsburgh

Feb. 1 Pittsburgh

Feb. 14 Mid-Atlantic Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs

Feb. 22 ACHA Southeast Regional tournament


By Ted Allen/Staff Writer

Men's D2 Hockey Links

No events scheduled for this team.

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vs. Southeast Regional vs North Carolina State
L (1-4)

Mar 2
Men's D2 Hockey
vs. Southeast Regionals vs The College of New Jersey
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Feb 17
Men's D2 Hockey
at MACH Playoff vs Penn State University
L (2-4)

Feb 16
Men's D2 Hockey
at MACH Playoff vs University of Delaware
W (7-4)

Feb 15
Men's D2 Hockey
at MACH Playoff vs Stevenson
W (6-0)

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