It may be the best kept secret in Athens.
Though judging from the packed Bird Arena, the undefeated Ohio Bobcats’ hockey squad actually may be no secret to the community at all.
Under Head Coach, Lionel Mauron, in his second season with the Bobcats’ coaching staff and in his first year serving at the helm of the squad, the ‘Ice Cats are off to a fast and impressive start, outscoring their first four opponents by a 28-6 margin.
If the first four games are any indication of the depth and potential of this Bobcats squad, it appears that the team is well-equipped to dealing with challenges, as it has certainly been a strong suit for them so far this season.
As a huge hockey fan, who has worked for and covered the NHL throughout the years, it is a joy to see this squad becoming the toast of the town and their future looks extremely bright, especially when you add freshman netminder Garrett Alderman to the mix.
The rookie goaltender already has a shutout under his belt in his first start with the team.
In looking at the squad’s early success, Mauron noted that while his team is a work in progress, he is pleased with what they are building thus far.
“After two weekends, we have managed to remain undefeated. We are now starting our conference play, and we are looking forward to improving every week. The addition of new players this year has made an important impact on our team and we have been able to play at a faster pace, with more energy. We have a lot of work to do, but I am confident this program is on an exciting track,” Mauron told the Athens News.
While other sports may gain more publicity and attention, OU Bobcats Hockey is definitely a team to watch and root for. I know I will be doing both.
As the Bobcats’ 2022-23 season continues to be a work progress, the history of the squad serves as a catalyst of inspiration to its current incarnation.
With that in mind, Ohio Bobcats Hockey paid homage to five individuals who have contributed so much to the past success of the sport here in Athens.
Five new members were recently inducted into the Bobcats’ Hockey Hall of Fame during Alumni Weekend at the beginning of the month.
Each has added to the history and success of the sport at the university and I wanted to take the time to highlight some of their accomplishments in this column.
Travis was part of the 2004 National Championship Team, he was a two-year captain of the squad and represented team USA in the 2005 Winter World University Games.
He joined the team in 1979 and won three MCHL League Championships, two tournament Championships and was MCHL League MVP. He was an assistant captain for two years.
One of the program’s all-time leading scorers, Mike played in the early 80s, when the program was independent. His son, Tommy, played for the program and graduated in 2020.
Captain of the team in 1983, he started a new era of OU hockey that brought in Canadian graduate students to Athens and the team placed third in the National Championships in Huntsville ALA. Jay was a huge part of the Athens community and hosted hockey schools for the youth of Athens.
Anne Oberlin – “Meritorious service”
The first woman to ever be inducted into the university’s Hockey Hall of Fame, she has served on the Blue Line Booster Club since 2007 and was the president for many of those years.
In speaking with the Athens News, Mauron praised each new member of the Hall of Fame and thanked them for their many years of service to both the sport of hockey and the community.
“I want to thank the inductees for their incredible contributions to the program. Over the years, they have created the Ohio hockey tradition and have built our program’s legacy.,” Mauron said.
“Their standards are permanently engraved on the walls of Bird Arena, and generations to come will know about their achievements. I am proud to coach such a storied program, that has seen so many successful and committed people over the years. As we start a new season of Ohio hockey, we have one objective in mind: to make our alumni proud and keep adding to the Ohio legacy,” the coach added.
With a quick start to this year’s campaign, it’s likely those new inductees are already proud of what this squad is building toward accomplishing.
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