DI Flames designate four men's hockey captains for 2019-20
September 13, 2019 | Lynchburg, Va.
Prior to Friday's final intra-squad scrimmage, Head Coach Kirk Handy designated four forwards as captains of Liberty University's ACHA Division I men's hockey team for the 2019-20 season, which opens next Friday against Duquesne University at the LaHaye Ice Center.
|Senior forwards Brock Thompson (from left), Josh Hamilton, and Victor Blomberg will be assistant captains for the 2019-20 season.|
"We are super excited about this group of captains," Handy said. "They're a great group of guys and they will do an excellent job. The great thing about it is there are tons of leaders in that locker room so these four guys will have lots of support in there."
Pierce was a head or assistant captain on three previous teams — the Nashville Junior Predators AAA squad, Northeast Generals of the Northern American Hockey League, and Milton Icehawks of the Ontario Junior Hockey League.
"I'm pumped," he said. "It is really exciting and an absolute honor. God has blessed me to represent an incredible university and coaching staff and guys that believe in me and this team. We're all really good friends and it's going to be a tight-knit group."
Handy said Pierce embodies all of the qualities the Flames' coaching staff desires in a captain.
"Devin lives out his Christian faith, he is excellent in the classroom, and he is a tireless worker who plays the game in both ends of the rink," he said. "He is a leader in the locker room, and a guy who motivates guys on and off the ice."
Pierce, an exercise science major with a therapy science cognate, said his personality won't be affected by wearing a letter on his sweater.
"God has put me in those positions and I really don't change much with a C or an A," he said. "I just try to be myself and lead by actions, not so much by what I say, and be a guy that the team can lean on."
He expects the Flames to ascend the ACHA ranks from their No. 8 preseason debut to challenge for ESCHL regular season and tournament titles and make a return trip to Frisco, Texas, for a deeper run at the ACHA DI National Championships.
"It's going to be a really special year with the group of seniors that we have," he said. "The team is looking really strong. Intensity in practices this year has been way up and our scrimmage today was at really good pace. The guys were really battling and it ended up going into overtime."
He hopes to help foster a winning attitude and Christ-centered focus among his teammates.
"Our culture has been great this preseason and we are playing as just one unit," he said. "Everyone is pushing each other in the right direction and we are excited to get things rolling next Friday."