Posted on: November 20, 2013
Don Schulz is the head coach of the WolfPack men’s hockey team. TRU competes in the BC Intercollegiate Hockey League. Don is into his third year at the helm.
It’s been some time since my last blog of Oct. 24. At that time we were on the tail end of a 4 game losing streak. Since that time we have won 5 straight games including scores of 5-2 vs. Selkirk Oct. 25, 4-3 vs. UVic Nov. 1, 6-1 and 9-2 vs. Eastern Washington (EWU) Nov. 8-9 and 9-6 @ Trinity Western (TWU) in Langley Nov. 15.
We held some team meetings where were saying the right things, but now we have started to Walk the Walk where I’ve repeatedly said to them, “Actions speak louder than words.” Each player has taken some personal accountability. We are still learning to adapt our play to the referee and not vice-versa. We still deviate away from what makes us successful but the consistency is improving. We have implemented some system changes; a couple of different ones in the neutral zone which we think better suits our team. To reiterate though, we can have all the systems in the world, but one has to have the will to compete, be willing to pay the price and be willing to put in the work to be successful. For the most part we have executed and have put in the work. Guys are starting to have a little swagger in their play. We have tweaked the lineup with some forward line changes, defensive pairings and goalie rotations.
It’s been hard for some guys to get into the starting lineup. They may not think that they’ve contributed to the streak because they haven’t played. It’s quite to the contrary; by virtue of their work ethic in practice it’s made the guys who are dressing that much better and to not take for granted the opportunity to dress and play. Depth is an awesome tool to have. Its pushed all to get better.
We have three huge games left this term, two at Cheney, WA to play EWU this Friday and Saturday Nov. 22-23. We close out first term at home vs. UVic Friday Nov. 29. Puck drop is at 8:30 pm. As a team before the Selkirk game Oct. 25 we committed to finish out the term with 8 straight wins. We have three to go. It’s imperative we do so; next term we have 10 games 6 of which are against Selkirk (two) and SFU (four). It will be a battle, a tremendous challenge.
On the negative side of our last game we allowed far too many goals against (six); on the positive we scored 9 with all but four players getting on the scoresheet with no player registering more than two points. Offensively it was a solid team effort; not so defensively. The guys have had some major doses of how I feel about not measuring up to our game deliverables especially at our Monday practices. The record was three Zamboni dumps to do one flood. We’ve also worked on continued modifications to our offensive and neutral zone forechecks. We’ve also worked hard on our Defensive zone play as well. No excuses do the work. Three more steps to eight; step six is this Friday.
Don Schulz, Head Coach
TRU WolfPack Men’s Hockey