Cyclone Hockey gets ready for home-and-home against Waldorf

Members of the Cardinal and Gold Cyclone Hockey teams square off for the puck during their scrimmage on Sept. 14 at the ISU Ice Arena. The Gold team won 7-1.

Carlyn Ward

Cyclone Hockey will take on Waldorf on Friday, Sept. 21 at 7:30 p.m. at Ames/ISU Ice Arena, marking the beginning of their home-and-home.

On Saturday, the team will then make the journey to the Albert Lea City Arena in Albert Lea, Minnesota, to conclude the home-and-home against Waldorf at 7 p.m.

While this weekend doesn’t officially mark the beginning of the season, it does play a big role for players and coaches.

“It’s not about wins or losses this weekend. It’s about selecting the team and getting ready,” said head coach and general manager Jason Fairman. “It’s more about trying to see guys in game situations and getting prepared for next weekend when ACHA play starts.”

Cyclone Hockey competes in the ACHA, or American Collegiate Hockey Association, while Waldorf competes in the NAIHA, or the North American Intercollegiate Hockey Association. As such, this weekend’s games function merely as a way to get prepared, rather than as divisional matchups with real value to the regular season.

Last year, Cyclone Hockey beat Waldorf in both meetings, with a 6-1 win as well as a 3-0 shutout win. While the games don’t mean anything in regards to points, they will serve as game experience to work some things out.

“It was great to get two wins last year … hopefully we’ll be able to get the same outcome this weekend as well,” said senior forward Aaron Azevedo. “But we’re really just focusing on getting all the kinks out, getting some chemistry down, getting our step back. That way we can take it into our regular season games coming up in October.”

Monday marked the first day of practice for the team, and getting those kinks out and setting the pace has been something they’ve been working on.

They are continuing to make decisions regarding the final roster, which may not even be set after this weekend’s games against Waldorf, as Fairman pointed out last week after the annual Cardinal and Gold scrimmage.  

“After the first couple days [of practice], everyone’s just trying to get comfortable again. Feeling their hands, getting their feet moving,” said Azevedo. “But once we started getting our passing down, the pace has been able to pick up these last two days and hopefully we’ll carry that into tomorrow, and then this weekend.”

The pace has been fast, and Fairman said the team has had a good jump this week in practice.

It’s clear everyone is ready to start working on things and ready to get the season started.

“There seems to be a lot of excitement at practice. It’s to be expected but it’s good to see,” Fairman said.