POTSDAM, N.Y. (WWNY) - Signs of college sports are starting to take shape at Clarkson University where both the men’s and women’s hockey teams are back at work in hopes of playing some games before the end of the 2020 year.
For the first time since March, the Clarkson Men’s and Women’s Hockey Teams got back on the ice last week.
Both teams were taking part in small group workouts to begin before working their way up to Phase 3, something that’s a welcome sight for men’s coach Casey Jones and women’s coach Matt Desrosiers.
“Well you know, it’s always exciting. It’s been a while, right? So you kinda get that itch and you get on and you forget how much you missed it. You know, it’s as simple as that. We did small groups for a while, we got to Phase 3, so now we got a large portion of our team on the ice there now in group of 25 so it’s exciting," said Jones.
“Ah, it’s pretty nice to be honest with you. Even though, you know, we’ve had our challenges and stuff with it just being in small groups and kinda running through these phases and stuff like that, but it’s just nice to be back on the ice,” said Desrosiers.
The men’s season doesn’t officially start until October 3rd when their hours on the ice can jump from 8 to 20. But Jones says he’s easing his team back into their normal routine due to the fact that some players are ahead of others as far as conditioning is concerned.
“We’re not even getting anywhere near that just because we don’t want to have any burnout phase come. We’re lifting, we’re making sure. And the other thing is that a lot of our guys haven’t had access that they normally have in summers to get prepared. So we don’t want to risk injury in going too hard, so we’re progressively going into it way more than in years past," said Jones.
Desrosiers has taken a similar approach, saying when the team first got on the ice they were limited to 10 people and had to split the team up into groups, which presented a challenge working around class schedules.
“It was just nice to kinda get on, work on some small skill stuff with the players, kinda ease them back into it. That’s been the difficult thing, too. A lot of them haven’t had the opportunity to get on the ice very much over the last 5 or 6 months. So it was something that we talked about that we just wanted to kind of ease them into things," said Desrosiers.
The Lady Golden Knights were set to open their season this week on the road at Sacred Heart before COVID-19 hit. Now both Desrosiers and Jones are hoping to get in some non-conference games close by in November and December before the ECAC season is set to open in January.
“Our administration has given us the green light to kinda go ahead and look to see if we can tentatively schedule some non-conference games, you know, toward the end of November into December," said Desrosiers.
“That’s seems to be the direction, nothing definitive yet but that’s where most of the talks have gone," said Jones.
Clarkson Men’s and Women’s Hockey: one step closer to playing a 2020-21 hockey season.