The Lawrence men’s hockey team began the season this Oct. 26, opening with an exhibition match against the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Pointers.
An unfortunate first match to have, as the Pointers did not lose a single game in the 2018-19 season (29-0-2), winning a sixth national championship in the process. Lawrence University was unable to keep their win streak, losing the contest 4-1.
Lawrence’s defense held up through the first period, but struggled to score as well, and both teams left the first period scoreless. However, the Vikings let the Pointers run the score up in the second period, with penalties leading to three power plays that helped UWSP sink four shots against an outnumbered Lawrence defense; two of those four goals came less than 40 seconds apart from one another. The Pointer’s defense still held up, however, and the Vikings did not score until the third period, when senior forward Jake Drinkard buried a shot 22 seconds in. This was the last score by either team, and aggressive defense by the Pointers allowed them to take home the exhibition win.
As tough as beginning with a 0-1 record may feel for some, a first game against a national champion is certainly not a basis for what problems a team needs fixing.
The Vikings will move on to a doubleheader next week, playing the Gustavus Adolphus Golden Gusties before heading into a three-week span of conference matchups against Trine, Aurora and Finlandia. If there’s any kinks for the team to work out, it is ideal they do it quickly.