The Pitt-Greensburg ice hockey team has faced a few challenges this season, but they are determined to make playoffs. Currently, the team is 5-9 and needs to win one more divisional game in order to ensure their spot in the playoffs.
The team has had some big wins this season, including against Niagara County Community College on Nov. 3, Case Western Reserve University on Nov. 19, and Saint Vincent College on Dec. 7. However, the team has been short on players all season as well, which has been challenging for the whole team.
“We have a short bench, so we really don’t get a lot of time to rest,” said Ben Hartman, senior center and one of the team’s captains.
In addition to practicing two days a week, every week, the team plays four to five games a month.
“Battling adversity is what we have done, and so far we have done a really good job doing so,” said Zach Bernstein, senior goalie. Bernstein also agrees that the number of players has been difficult for the team this year.
“Most teams have about 15 to 20 players, and we have played our season with anywhere from 8 to 12 players,” said Bernstein.
Their upcoming opponents include Case Western Reserve University on Feb. 2, Indiana University of Pennsylvania on Feb. 15, and Saint Vincent College on Feb. 24. Each of their teams have at least 20 players on their roster.
Despite their size, the team is determined to make playoffs this season. JM Lesnak, a senior on defense, is confident the team can make it if they try.
“The season has had its ups and downs. We finished last semester strong, and we’re looking to carry that momentum into this semester,” said Lesnak. “We play a lot of tough games this semester, so we’re really just trying to play our best every game.”
“I think [getting to playoffs] is very possible for us with the kids we have on this team and the talent we have,” said Hartman.
The team’s next home game is Feb. 16 at 8 p.m. at Center Ice Arena in Delmont against Indiana University of Pennsylvania.