• BEST IN STATE—Senior Courtney Schoen Lewis was named Best PR Student in Utah. Story
  • CROWBAR—Athletes compete in annual Crowbar backcountry race in Logan Canyon. CHRISTIAN HATAHWAY
  • HINDU FESTIVAL—Hundreds of Hindus and friends gather for annual Holi Festival of Colors in Spanish Fork. DANA IVINS
  • RAINBOW CELEBRATION—Holi celebrants joyfully paint themselves at Hindu festival. DANA IVINS
  • HUT! HUT! HUT!—ROTC teams compete in Ranger Challenge at Camp Williams. ALISON OSTLER. Story
  • SNOWBARD JAM—Boarders show their stuff on the Quad during Entrepreneur Week. CASSIDEE J. CLINE. Story
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  • WINTER A and the American flag over a snowy USU campus. WHITNEY PETERSON
  • QUADVIEW—A springtime view of the USU Quad and Old Main from atop the business building.
  • PRESS CONFERENCE—USU President Stan Albrecht briefing journalism students. CHRIS ROMRIELL. Story
  • HIGH-HEELIN’ IT—Men in high heels and their female supporters walk a mile to protest sex abuse. TY ROGERS
  • ELK PICNIC—Elk and humans mingle at the winter refuge at Blacksmith Fork's Hardware Ranch. CARESA ALEXANDER. Story

USU hockey, en route to nationals, awaits opponents to qualify

February 24th, 2013 Posted in Sports

By Ileana Borunda, Clayton Leuba, Tessa Italasano and Cale Patterson
The Blue Streak

LOGAN—The Aggies are headed to the national tournament again — they just don’t know who else will be there.

The American Collegiate Hockey Association’s West Regional Playoffs will take place Saturday and Sunday at the Salt Lake City Sports Complex to determine which teams will join the Aggies in the national competition, which will be held March 15 to 19 in St. Louis.

Utah State, which is 26-4-1 this season in men’s Division 2 play, has already qualified. Weber State University and the University of Utah will be among those competing in regional play this weekend.

“I would like to see Weber go to nationals over the University of Utah, strictly based on the fact they have rebuilt their program so well this last year and have given the top teams in the league really close and competitive games,” forward Chris Videto said.

Utah State has enjoyed several seasons with impressive win-loss records, but Videto said the team dominated play this season despite improvements across the league —Weber being a prime example. “This year the league has really picked up,” Videto said. “That says a lot about our team.”

During the next three weeks the team will take a break from scheduled games to prepare for the national tournament.

Even though they will not play any official ACHA games until nationals, the players are still expected to stay in shape and train for the upcoming tournament.

“We are going to try and schedule a few exhibition games to keep in playing shape,” said Stewart Hepburn, an assistant captain. “Players are expected to spend at least four days a week conditioning and doing cardio.”

Coaches and players on the team expressed confidence in the their chances.

“I just have that feeling we’re going to win it this year,” Hepburn said.

Coach Jon Eccles believes the team is peaking at the right time — and that bodes well for future recruitment.

“The success that we have now will help build for future teams,” he said. “People will want to join for coming seasons because of the current team’s winning attitude.”

MDL/TP

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