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The Rocky Mountain Collegian

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Men’s hockey plays Western Michigan in pair of weekend games

Colorado State University hockey (0-1) will host the Western Michigan Broncos (0-1) on back-to-back nights Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and 7 p.m. respectively. This will be CSU’s first action since their season opener back on Sept. 19, when they lost a heartbreaker to Midland University 2-1 in a shootout. As for Western Michigan, they’ll be coming off a miserable performance against Adrian College where they lost 8-1.

Though it was a slow offensive development against Midland, the Rams were able to limit the Warriors to only one goal in regulation. Exceptional defense enabled CSU to stay competitive and ultimately led them to even up the score at one with 51 seconds remaining in the third period, courtesy of a Noah Miller goal. Unfortunately for CSU, however, Midland would secure the victory in a shootout.


Nearly three weeks later, CSU will welcome Western Michigan, a team that also fell in their opening matchup, for a doubleheader.

“We’ve had a few weeks off and are excited to get back out there,” junior forward Liam Millar said. “We’ve been working hard with practices and workouts the last few weeks, and now it’s time to show it in the game.”

Player races to the puck
Liam Millar (15) races to beat the Utah defender down the rink. The Rams beat the Utes 6-3. (Devin Cornelius | Collegian)

As a result, here are three points of emphasis for the Rams ahead of their matchup against the Broncos.

1) Applying continuous pressure

CSU will need to apply pressure on the forecheck to generate turnovers, which should result in more shots on goal. They succeeded at this their first game (registered 48 shots against Midland) and will make it a case of stress once again. Western Michigan struggled in the turnover department against Adrian College.

For this reason, expect CSU to establish plenty of pressure on Western Michigan on their end of the ice, leading to defensive turnovers that should yield more shots on goal for CSU.

2) Attack the net on rushes

The Rams did record 48 shots against Midland, but only one of those shots ended up in the back of the net. A major reason for this was an inadequate number of quality scoring chances. CSU was unable to attack the slot consistently, especially on rushes from the neutral zone. As a result, CSU will need to crash the net and find openings on the attack against Western Michigan to produce quality scoring chances.

3) Win special teams

Finally, CSU will need to win on special teams, both offensively and defensively. They were zero for six on the power play against Midland, and Western Michigan is an aggressive club, committing eight penalties against Adrian College. CSU will get their chances on the man advantage, and they need to execute.

The Rams will also need to stay out of the penalty box. They committed 10 penalties against Midland (two of them were roughing minors that didn’t result in Warrior power plays because Midland also received two roughing minors). Nonetheless, cracking down on penalties should allow CSU to win the power play ratio and increase their chances of exiting the Edora Pool Ice Center with a victory (or two).

It has been nearly three weeks since the Rams stepped onto the ice for a matchup. With a heartbreaking loss on opening night, the Rams are still yearning for that first win of the season. A win this Friday and Saturday would certainly bolster their season outlook.


Brandon Kruse can be reached at or on Twitter @BrandonKruse9.

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About the Contributor
DEVIN CORNELIUS, Digital Managing Editor
Devin Cornelius is the digital managing editor for The Collegian. He is a fifth-year computer science major from Austin, Texas. He moved to Colorado State University and started working for The Collegian in 2017 as a photographer. His passion for photography began in high school, so finding a photography job in college was one of his top priorities. He primarily takes sports photos, volleyball being his favorite to shoot. Having been on The Collegian staff for 4 1/2 years, he's watched the paper evolve from a daily to a weekly paper, and being involved in this transition is interesting and exciting. Although Cornelius is a computer science major, his time at The Collegian has been the most fulfilling experience in his college career — he has loved every second. From working 12-hour days to taking photos in Las Vegas for the Mountain West Conference, he cannot think of a better place to work. Working as a photographer for The Collegian pushed him outside of his comfort zone, taking him places that he never expected and making him the photographer he is today. As the digital managing editor, Cornelius oversees the photos, graphics and social media of The Collegian along with other small tech things. Working on the editorial staff with Katrina Leibee and Serena Bettis has been super fun and extremely rewarding, and together they have been pushing The Collegian toward being an alt-weekly. Outside of The Collegian, he enjoys playing volleyball, rugby, tumbling and a variety of video games. When in Austin, you can find him out on the lake, wake surfing, wake boarding and tubing. You can expect that Cornelius and the rest of The Collegian staff will do their best to provide you with interesting and exciting content.

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