The New England College men’s ice hockey team finished off their 2020-2021 season with a 3-7 record during their 10-game season.
The team started the season with three consecutive losses, two against Babson, one against Anna Maria. The Pilgrims battled back during a weekend series versus Anna Maria and won 3-2. Following their win against the Amcats, men’s ice hockey went on to sweep Castleton (including an overtime win) and then lose their final four games of the year.
Sophomore forward Jhuwon Davis said, “Expectations were really high this year, coming off a good year last season, we wanted to build on that.”
Senior defenseman Nick Rein added, “Our final record was a disappointing outcome.” With a substantially lower win percentage this year (.300) compared to previous seasons (averaging .641 over the past four years), the Grims are hoping to come back stronger in their 2021-22 season. Davis said, “we’re looking to find our identity as a team.”
A COVID season reduced the men’s ice hockey schedule to 10 games. After their weekend series versus Norwich University was cancelled in mid-February, the team was able to add a different opponent, Anna Maria, to fill their place. With cancellations again a month later, the Pilgrims completed their 10 games by adding on a double-header weekend against Norwich to conclude the season. Rein explained that some of the major lows of the season were to have practiced all week and prepped for a game, only for it to be cancelled due to COVID protocols hours before game day.
The team was mostly grateful for the opportunity to step on the ice for games this season. Rein said, “We were just grateful to be actually playing games and we were happy to win the few that we did.”
“Getting key wins early in the season was a high point for us,” Davis added.
The NEC MIH team is saying goodbye to three seniors, Nick Rein, Channing Gorscak, and Drew Lambert. “We are going to miss their presence on and off the ice because those guys are a big part of our team,” said Davis.
Rein explained his hopes for the future of NEC ice hockey, “I hope that the team gets closer and closer every year to a winning season and an NEHC title.”
Even with the loss of these four seniors, the Pilgrims have many core players from the junior class returning, including leading goal-scorer of the season, Connor Inger. Freshman forward Anthony Cinato also made an impact on the ice this season, playing in all ten games, scoring two goals, and racking up three assists.
The New England College men’s ice hockey team hopes for a sense of normalcy next season as they work towards an NEHC title next winter.