SVSU making progress despite loss
November 23, 2009 —
The SVSU club hockey team lost to the Oakland University Grizzlies 6-3 following a hard-fought game Saturday night.
The Grizzlies scored the first goal of the night at 18:42 in the first period. SVSU junior defenseman Kaleb Grapp answered shortly after with two backto- back goals, one at 13:46 and the next at 13:41 with an assist from senior forward Nate Engstrom. Oakland finished out the period with two power play goals at 10:25 and at 4:28.
Although SVSU had numerous attempted shots on goal, the Cardinals remained scoreless in the second period. Despite SVSU’s hard working defense fending off shots on goal from Oakland in addition to crucial saves made by freshman goaltender Joe Kirkland, the Grizzlies had a short-handed goal during an SVSU power play with fifteen seconds left.
Oakland continued to challenge the Cardinals in the third period with a goal at 18:16. Senior forward Jonathan Tibaudo scored the last SVSU goal during a power play at 14:49 with assists from freshman defenseman Adam Leibinger and senior defenseman Patrick Miller. The final goal of the game occurred with seconds left on an empty- net goal from Oakland.
The Cardinals, who are now over halfway through their season, have overcome numerous challenges, but continue to fight for a chance to defend their national championship.
Sophomore forward Corey Barella took an extended period of time while considering what he thought to be the best part of the season thus far.
“I think the highlight of the team so far was our home game against CMU. We lost both games to Grand Valley [during Battle of the Valleys], and I don’t think we’ll have a real highlight until we come together as a team for every game,” he said.
Grapp echoes Barella’s views on the team’s highlights until this point in this season.
“The real highlight of the team comes when everyone’s giving their all,” Grapp said.
The Cardinals are hoping to take advantage of every game until Christmas break.
Says Grapp, “We have a couple more games before break comes around. I think our goal as a team is to take every point we possibly can, and that’s going to start in our practices.”
Barella, whose beliefs echo what’s been said by the rest of the team throughout the season, thinks that the Cardinals will continue to make great progress when they find their comfort level as a whole.
“One of the things we need to keep working on is meshing better as a team,” Barella said. “Once everyone starts working together and clicking really well, I think that we’ll be able to finish out our season the best that we can.”
The next Cardinals home game will take place following Thanksgiving break Dec. 5 against Lansing Community College.