D3 Ice Jacks First Game Loss Against GCU

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Posted: Monday, September 30, 2019 9:00 am

The D3 NAU Ice Jacks played their first game against Grand Canyon University (GCU) at home on Friday night, with GCU winning in a shutout 5-0.

NAU’s senior captain, Walker Yancy, thought their first game was a shock to the new players on the team. “Half our roster was scared rookies tonight and I think we are going to come out way better tomorrow,” Yancy said. “Right now it is probably setting in for a lot of boys that we have a couple seniors out on the ice. We have a lot of rookies that now know the sacrifices the seniors are making this year.”

The NAU Ice Jacks took eight penalties throughout the game, while GCU took nine penalties. The difference was, the Ice Jacks could not seem to capitalize on scoring opportunities when they were up a man on the ice. Four out of the five goals GCU scored were completed while they were on a power play.

It was obvious NAU and GCU were old rivals because of how aggressive they were toward each other and the big hits completed throughout the game. However, taking penalties is never an advantage for a team and Yancy believes they need to remember to keep a level head.

“We need to quit our penalties, we can’t win a game when we are down a whole man,” Yancy said. “Some people blame refs, but at the end of the day, you just got to look at yourself in the mirror.”

NAU had 39 shots on goal against GCU goalie, Gabe Lepper, and GCU had 41 shots on goal against Ice Jacks goalie, Jacob Paul. Yancy thinks they should not have let GCU’s defense and offense beat them at home. “I think their defense was slow and we could have out-skated them, but we chose not to,” Yancy said. “I think they had one line of forwards that could out-state us, but it shouldn’t make a difference at the end of the day.”

The Ice Jacks play GCU again on Saturday, September 28 at 8 p.m., Yancy is hoping to come out with more confidence and energy tomorrow night.

“We need to keep penalties down, eat pucks, get pucks deep and honestly just come out way stronger tomorrow night,” Yancy said.