Chargers Aim to Set the Tone For Years To Come
By Chase Smith You can count the number of returning varsity seniors on one hand this year. The Bloomfield Chargers took a dev astating blow when they graduated over a dozen seniors last year. Considering the team consists of less than 20 players this year (including goalies) there was a lot of space to be filled in the roster. Coach Bruce Mcalister set his eyes on Junior Var sity players, incoming freshmen and travel players which created one of the youngest line ups the Chargers have seen in a few years. A young hockey team has disadvantages and advantages when it comes to game time. Size and strength become an important factor in battles for the puck in the corner. 1he Chargers had multiple players that had a intimidating and large presence on the ice last year so coaches have been putting a larger emphasis on weight lifting and strength development this year to make up for the difference. Another disadvantage is that many players lack experience playing at the speed that varsity plays at. Already there has been an injury and a few close calls because younger players aren’t used to being on their toes.
When these players get used to the pace of play they will be more able to perform at their highest potential. Young players will have 2 to 3 more years of growth on the Chargers hockey team so they will be able to dramatically improve by the time they are seniors. When most of the team consisted of seniors last year, it was harder to give younger players the opportunity to play at a higher level where they can learn and imitate the seniors. The seniors this year have a big responsibility in leading the team this year and setting a foundation for the future. Captain Kevin Barnett capture the signifi cance of the older players when he says, “The returning players that we have will need to be more involved in the development and guidance of the younger players. We won’t be able to win the games on skill alone, but rather the effort and hard work which we will put into our program:’ The Chargers will be playing about 25 games this season and their annual free t-shirt game will be coming up soon. The new talent and new faces of team will offer an interesting and exciting season for they youthful hockey squad.