Cyclone Hockey focuses on chemistry in second series of season


Miranda Cantrell/Iowa State Daily

Sophomore left defenseman Cory Sellers fights to get the puck from two Beavers players on Friday, Nov. 15, during the first of two matchups against Minot State. The Cyclones defeated the Beavers 2-1.

Ben Visser

When Southern Illinois Edwardsville comes to Ames for a double-header Friday and Saturday at the Ames/ISU Ice Arena, Cyclone Hockey will have one thing on its mind: boosting the team’s chemistry.

The Cyclones will use the series to help the team gel. Graduating nine seniors last season, Cyclone Hockey is a young team with freshmen poised to fill prominent roles.

Co-captain Cory Sellers doesn’t expect the Division II Cougars to be at the same level as some of the teams the Cyclones will play in the Central States Collegiate Hockey League, so it will be a good opportunity for the team to build chemistry.

“I think it’s going to be an opportunity for everyone to kind of gel together,” Sellers said. “To get to know each other and kind of get [the young guys] to understand what it’s like playing as a team and kinda learn our system.”

The Cyclones still have to come out and play well if they expect to walk away with a pair of wins.

Last season, Central Oklahoma won the American Collegiate Hockey Association’s national tournament, and Cyclone Hockey head coach Jason Fairman is building up to his team’s games against the defending champions and other league opponents.

“I’m just more worried about ourselves,” Fairman said. “We want to work our way into teams to prepare for Central Oklahoma and all that. No disrespect to any opponents we are going to play before then, but we’ve got a progression of how we are going to work toward the meat of the season.”

Part of the Cyclones preparation for the CSCHL is assigning roles by giving players the opportunity to display their skills.

“We want to get everybody included, still,” said co-captain Alex Stephens. “Everybody’s trying to find a spot. Whether it’s in the lineup, out of the lineup or a spot on the first, second [or] third line … I think everyone’s going to have to come and show us their A-game.”

It’s the second week of a new season, and the young guys are learning a new system and fitting in well, but the Cyclones still have a lot to work on. Stephens said this will be a good weekend to help the team.

The Cyclones have their roster set after last weekend when they played with an expanded roster against the Huntsville Havoc of the Southern Professional Hockey League.

The freshmen showed a lot of promise with six different newcomers netting goals in a series where the Cyclones scored 16 times.

“If [the younger guys] can step in, that’d be great,” Fairman said. “We’re going to have a lot of rookies that are going to be stepping [up] for prominent roles because we had a lot of guys graduate.”