YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) -The Canfield hockey team is coming off the best season in program history. Last year, the 17-5-3 Cardinals broke over a dozen school records and made it to the second round of the state tournament.
“It’s big shoes to fill is the way I see it,” senior Mario Battaglia said.
“Seeing us get that far as a team, it just makes us think that we can get there again,” junior Cory Knarr added.
But a new season presents new challenges.
“Last year we had an exceptional team. Five of my kids graduated, so obviously you start over rebuilding,” head coach Steven Covelli said.
Canfield’s roster is a mix of players of all skill-levels, including one who has never played hockey before. What the team feels they lack in skill, they make up for in conditioning.
“The thing is when you are less talented, you have to work harder than the other team,” Covelli said. “So come third period, my kids aren’t going to be tired. Everything we do in practice is skating. If you can’t skate, you can’t play.”
The Cardinals still have the same high expectations and are hoping for another postseason run.
“I refuse to take a step back,” Covelli added. “We’re still going to push for the top of the mountain.”
“We had a great season last year,”” senior Matthew Scolieri said. “We can have the same exact season this year so, we just got to bring the intensity.”
“We’re coming our powerful and we’re really making a force,” senior Zane Perrico said. “Honestly, we’re just hungry for it.