Calm, humble goaltender finds success

Iowa State junior goalie Derek Moser blocks the puck during the game against Illinois State Oct. 16. 

Austin Anderson

Derek Moser sat behind two senior goaltenders, Matt Cooper and Scott Ismond, during his sophomore year for Cyclone Hockey.

Only one goal got past Moser in his two starts, providing optimism that Moser could take over for Cooper, who would go on to represent the United States at the Winter World University Games, and Ismond, who became an assistant coach for Cyclone Hockey this season.

But Moser watched the 2015-2016 Cyclone Hockey try-outs from behind the glass at the Ames/ISU Ice Arena. He used two chairs, one to sit in and another to support his sprained knee that kept him off the ice for try-outs and the first exhibition series of the season against the Huntsville Havoc.

He checked his phone as his teammates came off the ice. No fans were in the stands and there was no reason for concern. His sprained knee would take a few weeks to recover and he was as calm as always despite the possibility of transfer Matt Goedeke emerging and taking over the starting spot that many in the organization believed was Moser’s.

Goedeke did emerge and became the consistent starter for most of the season for the Cyclones.

The two goaltenders have fairly even skill sets but Goedeke set himself apart early with a shutout over No. 2 Lindenwood.

Despite the competitiveness, there was never a rivalry that ensued between the two. The two actually became good friends and attended yoga sessions together.

“Goalies are kind of weird, but we all stick together,” Moser said. “With goalies, there’s this automatic connection. It’s kind of bizarre.”

Goedeke continued being the starter for the Cyclones but Moser got his chance after Central Oklahoma beat Goedeke four times in a 20-minute stretch.

Moser battled injury again at the beginning of the second semester, but when he got his chance, he capitalized.

He was successful until the American Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs came around. Then Moser took off.

He allowed three goals in three games in the ACHA Tournament, including surrendering just a single goal combined to the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in the tournament.

“We wouldn’t have ended up where we did without Derek’s play at the national tournament,” Fairman said. “He was phenomenal, and if we would have won the title, he would have gotten MVP of the tournament, for sure.”

Whether it is on the ice in the biggest game of his career or checking his phone before the season even starts, Moser doesn’t change. He stays calm and humble.

He avoids at nearly all costs to accept the praise that he deserves.

When he was asked how he shut out the No. 1 team in the country, he responded with: “It wasn’t just me out there. There are 22 guys on this team that helped.”

When asked about sitting behind Goedeke for the majority of the season, he was genuine: “You can’t be mad playing behind a guy like Goedeke who is playing so well.”

And the secret to his success?

“I just tried to stay calm out there,” he said.

Co-captain Cory Sellers used one word to describe the play of Moser during the tournament.


After battling back from injuries and being the back-up, Moser led Cyclone Hockey to a season that culminated in being the No. 2 overall ranked team in the country.

Unbelievable, indeed.