Central Valley hockey team struggles to get their head in the game, faced with back-to-back losses

On Jan. 17, senior Samuel Romutis prepares to block an oncoming shot from a Ringgold
player while sophomore Matthew Keller lines up his defense around the net.

On Jan. 17, senior Samuel Romutis prepares to block an oncoming shot from a Ringgold player while sophomore Matthew Keller lines up his defense around the net.

Jenna Engel, Design Editor

They lace up their skates and hit the ice every week. Taping their sticks
and putting in their mouth guards, the Central Valley hockey team was busy preparing themselves for one of the biggest games of their season. On Jan. 3, the Warriors faced off against the Burrell Buccaneers, looking for a victory.

In the first period, three scoring plays were made between the two teams, Central Valley coming on top with two of the three goals. One of which was during a Warrior’s powerplay, coming off the stick of junior Derek Scott, a Central Valley defenseman. Not even a minute after Scott’s shot found the back of the net, senior Matthew Vrankovich fired another shot past the Burrell goalie, giving the Warriors an advantage, 2-0.

Burrell was slow to start, scoring their first goal after 10 minutes went by in the first period. The second period for the Buccaneers was a hot one, though, scoring three goals within the first five minutes, marking the score as 4-2, Burrell.

Central Valley was sure to make a come back and even added one for good measure before the period was over, with goals scored by junior Christian Bohon, senior Benjamin Krummert and Vrankovich.

By the end of the second period, Burrell evened up the score to 5-5, and after the zamboni smoothed the ice between the second and third period intermission, the Buccaneers kept their energy alive, opening the final period with two goals.

The Warriors started to come back for the victory with another goal from Krummert, but unfortunately couldn’t finish the deed by the time the clock ran out. While this loss didn’t sit well with the players, it served as a wake up call that focus needs to be rechecked.

“We had that game all the way until the very end. They are a very beatable team, we just have to start strong and finish even stronger,” senior Riley Adams said. “We can beat them and anyone else in this league, we just have to give it our all and play our game.”

Lacing up their skates again the following week, the boys got ready to face Morgantown on Jan. 10. The first period proved to be uneventful in terms of scoring plays, keeping the board at 0-0. The Mohigans dominated the second period with four goals to the Warrior’s one. The third period was more of an evened match between the two teams, both of which scored two goals.

Their second January game was another loss, with Morgantown coming out on top for the night, 6-3. “Our comeback fell short and it left a pretty bad taste in our mouth after the fact,” senior goalie Samuel Romutis said. “We definitely have the ability to beat any team that we face, but I just think that our minds aren’t in the game as much as they should be.”

With another week to get in focus, by Jan. 17, the team was already skating out on the ice warming up to face their next opponent: Ringgold.

Ringgold dominated the rink with two goals per period, shutting the Warriors out. After three consecutive losses, the boys are having a hard time getting back in the mindset that is needed to win games.

“It seems like we don’t care about losing games as much anymore since it happens so often. We have the ability to win against the teams that we face, but when our heads aren’t in it, there’s not much we can do to change the outcome,” Romutis said.

On Jan. 31, the team prepares to take on Bishop Canevin at home in the Brady’s Run Ice Arena. Hopeful that their losing streak will end, the boys are ready to change their mentality for this upcoming game.

“With the playoffs fast approaching, these are the games that we need to be winning to get a high seed,” Romutis said. “So, hopefully something changes by our next game.”