From Marquette Wire
By Jack Albright
Look at the Marquette Club Hockey roster and you will see it is one of its youngest lineups in recent history, with 10 new players on the team this year.
The team carpools together to practices and games, so this year upper-level students have had more responsibility ensuring first-year students get to and from the ice rink each week.
Chris Deneweth, one of the team assistant captains and club president, said the team is going through an adjustment period right now but hopes it will play more dynamic hockey soon.
“We have a lot of new kids. Our chemistry lacks and that’s been reflected by not being able to score as many goals as expected,” Deneweth, a senior in the College of Business Administration, said. “Still developing the chemistry, but we have the right pieces.”
Henry Mansky, a junior in the College of Business Administration, said he is excited to see how the team develops through the year.
“I’m excited to see what we’re capable of,” Mansky said. “We have a young team so I’m interested to see who will step up and be leaders, goal scorers and game changers. And I’m (also) excited to see how our veterans are gonna set the pace for the rest of the season with these younger kids.”
Through its first seven games of the season, the Golden Eagles sit at a 5-2 record but are coming off a loss most recently to the Demon Deacons Oct. 7. Mansky said once the team finds its groove, it will be “lights out.”
“After the first couple of games I think we need to get used to playing together with newer guys,” Mansky said. “Last year there were so few new guys and the guys that were playing with each other had been doing so for a while.”
Patrick Sweeney, a senior in the College of Health Sciences, joined the team as a first-year student back in 2019 after playing for various club and AAA teams in Illinois.
“I played my whole life growing up,” Sweeney said. “I played at Rockford Hockey Club and Team Illinois.”
Prior to joining Marquette’s team, Deneweth played in his home state of Michigan for the Traverse City Bay Reps.
He said his favorite part of the team is the culture the team creates.
“Nothing better than the family culture of it. The boys you meet are better than any game you play,” Deneweth said.
Similar to Deneweth, Mansky said playing with his teammates has been his favorite part of being part of the team these last two years.
“These kids are my lifelong friends and they bring me so much joy,” Mansky said. “It’s crazy to think without hockey I would have never met them.”
While on the road, the team eats lunches together. Last season, the team went out to lunch while away for a game in Indiana.
As both a captain and president, Deneweth has responsibilities on and off the ice such as making the schedules, recruiting players and scheduling ice times for games and practices. Sweeney did not hesitate to acknowledge the important role Deneweth has in the team.
“Chris Deneweth really pioneers the way of leadership,” Sweeney said. “He wears a captain letter on the jersey and serves as president and the entire e-board.”
Mansky also praised Deneweth and captain Michael Helm, a junior in the College of Engineering, for their work as captains.
“We have a good set of leaders with A’s on their chest in Michael Helm and Chris Deneweth,” Mansky said. “Both set great examples for the guys and allow for the team to succeed as a unit.”
Despite not being an official team captain, Mansky said he hopes to be a leader and set a good example for his teammates.
The team competes in the Black Division of the Northern Collegiate Hockey League and faces schools from both Wisconsin and Illinois. Such teams include Aurora University, Lewis University, DePaul University, Marian University and the Concordia University of Wisconsin.
With no ice rink on campus, the team plays its home games 20 minutes from Marquette at the Ponds of Brookfield in Brookfield, Wisconsin. For a few games throughout the season, the team offers bus tickets for students to get out to games.
“We bus fans to a few games a year. They leave the annex before our game and take them back after the game,” Sweeney said. “It’s $5 tickets and we advertise heavily the entire week of the game.”
Mansky said the next game with buses is on Halloween night.
The season lasts until February, with the top four teams in each division securing a trip to the playoffs.
Despite its young roster, Mansky said the team has high expectations for the remainder of the season.
“The boys are really looking to take home the Hap Cup,” Mansky said. “That’s the conference championship.”
(Originally published at https://marquettewire.org/4083242/sports/marquette-mens-club-hockey-excited-for-season-with-youthful-team/)