After a 20-day break between games, the Robert Morris University women’s hockey team will be back in action on December 30 for the annual College Hockey Showcase at Consol Energy Center against Bemidji State.
Following the teams 1-1 draw against Syracuse on December 10, the Colonials had a week of optional practices before getting the opportunity to return home for the holiday break.
Upon returning to campus on December 26, the team began practices right away to prepare for the upcoming game. The first day back, the Colonials had two practices in order to make up for the time they missed.
“Even though we’ve had such a long break our team consists of so many hard-working girls that we are going to practice and train really hard these next few days leading up to the game,” said junior forward, Cobina Delaney. “We know that in having this long break that we’ll have to work twice as hard to be in the best shape for these games.”
Playing their first game after such a long break is exciting for the team, and even more so with the stage being much bigger.
“In general the first game back from a break is really exciting because we haven’t played in a few weeks,” remarked sophomore forward, Thea Imbrogno. “But of course it’s even more exciting getting to play at Consol.”
The match will be a test for the Colonials, as the Beavers are currently ranked eighth in the U.S. College Hockey poll.
“We are playing Bemidji, who is a very strong team so it is going to be a big test for us,” explained Delaney. “Our team is very excited to be able to not only challenge ourselves but to give us an opportunity to prove ourselves playing against a currently ranked team.”
With the women’s team having the first game on Friday’s schedule at 1:00, the team will have an opportunity to stick around for the two games that follow.
“It’s awesome to have three great teams from our school play one after another and have the opportunity to cheer each other on,” Delaney said. “Since we play first we get to stay after our game to cheer on the men’s club team and then cheer on our men’s NCAA Division I team. It’s a great atmosphere for the hockey community to gather and watch and participate in some great hockey games.”
Having the opportunity to play at the same arena as the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins adds a different feel that all players enjoy.
“My favorite part of the showcase is the change in atmosphere,” Imbrogno explained. “I really love our home arena, but it is cool to be playing downtown where the Penguins play.