DIII men’s hockey in Pennsylvania for three-game showcase to open 2022-23 season
Liberty University’s College Hockey Federation (CHF) Division III men’s hockey team opens its 2022-23 season tonight at the Neumann (Pa.) University Showcase, with a 9:45 p.m. matchup against Delaware.
“We get started a lot earlier this year, in September, and that’s going to allow us to see where we’re at a lot earlier,” Flames Head Coach Josh Graham said. “We start with a bang with Delaware, a very competitive team, so that’s going to be a really good marker for us right off the start of the season to see, ‘Where are we at? What work do we need to do?’”
Graham expects excellent competition in the rest of the showcase from Kutztown (Pa., on Saturday at 4 p.m.) and Salisbury (Md., Sunday at 8:45 a.m.) as well.
“So we get three games in three days, kind of get that nationals feeling going, and then we get two more weeks to prepare for our first home series against Tennessee,” on Oct. 1 at 6:30 p.m. and Oct. 2 at 1:30 p.m. in the LaHaye Ice Center, Graham said.
Senior forward and head captain Jaime Ross is excited to see the potential from a large incoming class of players.
“This year is going to be good because we have 11 new freshmen coming in and they’re all talented and skilled and they’ll bring a new depth to the team,” he said. “They’re all on the same level as the returners and there’s going to be some good chemistry based on seeing them in the locker room and off the ice. I’m excited to see how it goes.”
Graham believes they will give the Flames the edge they need to not only advance to their third consecutive ACCHL Tournament Final, but to win it for the first time after being upended by Coastal Carolina the past two years.
“I just sense a better focus with our group,” he said. “We’ve got a little more maturity as a group, and that’s going to translate into a more mature team on the ice, too.”
Video by Patrick Strawn/Club Sports Director of Video & Media