Icers End Season With Disappointment
The Penn State Icers’ trip to Delaware last weekend for the ACHA National Tournament went much as the rest of their season did. Penn State lost to a higher-ranked team in the first round before beating a lower-ranked team in the consolation round.
On March 5, the No. 10 Icers took on No. 7 Rhode Island in the first round of the national tournament. It was a hard-fought contest that Penn State lost 2-0. The Icers showed heart and tenacity, but just did not have enough firepower to beat a quality team. Historically, Penn State is used to winning against highly-ranked squads but could not find a way to consistently do so this season. Penn State finished with a 4-9-1 record against top-ten teams.
On March 6, Penn State finished its season on a winning note with a 3-1 victory over Robert Morris (Ill.) in the 11th-place game. Goalie Teddy Hume picked up his 60th career victory to finish with the second-most wins in Icers history. This win was normal for this year’s Icers, as Penn State went 19-2 against teams ranked outside the top ten.
Overall, it was a disappointing season for Penn State. The Icers are expected to contend for the national title every year. With Terry Pegula’s donation and the announcement that Penn State hockey would be moving to the NCAA Division One, excitement was at an all-time high for the program. This excitement made the feeling even worse when the Icers crashed out of the national tournament last week.
The next few seasons will be quite interesting for Penn State hockey. The move to D-1 will mean a new stadium, scholarship players, new rivals and possibly a changing of the college hockey landscape. However, the Icers have one more season as a club team to try to win a national championship. Penn State will have to contend with excitement over the move to D-1 and the loss of several key seniors next season. One thing they will not have to contend with, however, is lofty expectations of a national championship victory.
Who knows? Maybe a lack of high expectations will actually turn out to benefit the team next year.