Hornet hockey pucks up

The Hornets, with Ray Gsell, make a great effort, but lose 4-9 to CSU Northridge after the half on Friday at Skate Town in Roseville.:


The Hornets, with Ray Gsell, make a great effort, but lose 4-9 to CSU Northridge after the half on Friday at Skate Town in Roseville.:

Taylor Collis

The Sacramento State men’s hockey team lost its first game of the season to California State University Northridge on October 3, 4 to 9. The Hornets are now 0-6 against the Matadors.

The Hornets started the game well by scoring first. Senior forward Chase Turner tried to make a goal and the shot was deflected. He then immediately got the puck back and scored, but the Matadors came back and scored a goal at the end of the first period.

At the beginning of the second period Northridge scored twice. Brian Hubbert got the puck, cleared it down the rink, and scored a goal. The Hornets had a chance to score on the next power play when Northridge was down one player due to a penalty, but they missed two open shots and couldn’t keep the opponents away from their goal, allowing the Matadors to score at the end of the second period.

The Hornets still had fight left in them and scored two goals in the first few minutes of the third period.

“We showed signs of life,” said sophomore defenseman Raymond Gsell, also known as the “Tropical Storm G-Sell”.

However, they couldn’t keep up with the Matadors, who scored more goals in the last period. Second year head coach Tom Bowen accepted defeat and decided to let the players that haven’t had a chance to play to go out there and end the game.

“He wanted us to stir stuff up and let them know who they were playing,” said team captain senior defenseman Matt VanAtta.

Junior forward and second year president of the club Justin Ellison got out on the rink and started a fight with one of the defenders – pushing, shoving and punching the player in the mask – which got the fans off their seats cheering them on. By the end of the game there were four Hornet players in the penalty box at once due to the fights.

Ellison said he started the fight because the Matador’s coach made illegal equipment calls on them in the beginning of the game due to a Hornet player wearing a helmet that violated regulation. This can occur when modifications to the cage or helmet are made.

“It was a classless call on a coach coming into our arena and penalizing us for our equipment,” said Ellison.

During the game, the Hornets were mainly playing defensively and had to fight to get the opponents away from their goal.

“We had our chances, but it’s hard when we lose our battles in the corner and those penalties were a big part of it. It was a learning experience.” said sophomore left wing Kyle Buckingham.

“We got beat on the little plays,” said Gsell.

The coach expected better from the team, but thinks the Hornets played hard. He said the Matadors were just the better team that night.

“It’s a young team and we have a good returning core group. We need to play harder and stronger next time,” said Bowen.

Since the team has many new players, according to Gsell, it will need to go back to the basics of ice hockey and work on the fundamentals again.

“We have at least seven or eight new players and only lost one player from last season,” said Ellison. The Hornets ended last season 9-9 and hope to win more games this season, according to Ellison.

The Hornets next game will be at the Roseville Skate Town Ice Arena against the College of the Canyons Cougars on Oct. 17 at 9:15p.m.

Taylor Collis can be reached at [email protected]