Freedom’s 3 hockey players skating towards goals

Skating+towards+the+blue+line%2C+sophomore+Chase+Grable+races+for+the+puck+as+he+plays+against+Wilmington+on+Dec.+7.

Skylar Scobbo/FHS Press

Skating towards the blue line, sophomore Chase Grable races for the puck as he plays against Wilmington on Dec. 7.

Brigette Richard, Business Manager

After Freedom losing three seniors, Matthew Keller, Jesse Nelson and Marc Evans, the underclassmen needed to become ready to step up for a new season. Playing on the Central Valley Warriors Hockey team, freshman Noah Fessides and sophomores Chase Grable and Aiden Pournaras step up as the high school’s only hockey players. Within the Warriors team, players from Central Valley, Freedom, Beaver Falls, New Brighton, Hopewell and Riverside come together and play as a team, rather than against each other. Being the only students playing hockey at Freedom, these three players and their team have been doing some things differently.

“We are preparing for our next game by taking a completely different approach in practice by changing drills we normally do to implement a new playing style,” Grable said.

After falling to Wilmington on Dec. 7, the Warriors prepare to step up for their next game against Burrell on Dec. 20. Looking back at their last game, they can see what they did wrong, and prepare to improve for the next one as they take a different approach on the ice.

“I think as long as we can get some things together, we can start winning a couple of games and hopefully turn the season around,” Pournaras said.

Working together is the most important part of playing on a team. Being able to look back at things they may have done wrong in past games can greatly improve the way they play the next time they get on the ice. After a rough season last year, the team plans to work their hardest to make this season a successful one. 

“Last year’s season was something to remember because I feel like it can have a lot of information,” Grable said.

With hockey, and many other sports, being able to look back at previous games and seasons can be very beneficial when it comes to determining what worked best and what did not. Many sports players look back at clips and recordings of their games and study what needs improved. It is a beneficial tool that coaches for many sports choose to use with their players.

“We’re making sure we work on our stamina and focus. In the game against Wilmington, we played a good first two periods, but didn’t play as well in the third,” Pournaras said.

Stamina is an important thing to have when it comes to sports like hockey. It helps with the aggressive movement and the short periods of extreme energy used when playing the game.

“I normally play defense, but the past few games, I moved up to offense,” Pournaras said.

With Grable playing defense and Pournaras recently playing offense, there is a variety in Freedom’s hockey players. During practices, Grable, Pournaras and Fessides prepare with the team as they do drills and implement playing styles. The team will try their hardest to step up and take on their opponents throughout the course of the season.