Wildcats prepare for the upcoming hockey season

Wildcats prepare for the upcoming hockey season

MARQUETTE — The Northern Michigan Wildcats defeated the U.S. National Team Development Program U-18 4–0 in exhibition play at the Berry Events Center on Saturday.

Media Day was held a few hours before and the team spoke about their goals for the team.

“We’re really excited about starting the season. I think we waited a long time. We weren’t happy with the last two–thirds of last season. And we got a lot of guys that are anxious to kind of prove who were are and kind of redeem ourselves a little,” NMU head coach Walt Kyle said.

“We’ve got a great group of guys and the main thing we’re looking for this year is the team culture, lots of positivity and no negativity and I think that will lean towards good in the end. Last year was a lot of injuries, not to have excuses but, this year that’s the main focus…a good team and everyone has each other’s backs. The only person that can be negative is the coach,” said NMU forward Shane Sooth.

“The team has always been there. I’ve gotten opportunities and got lucky. But then also, it was a good year last year for myself but this year, I just got to step up it up and having the team looking the way it is this year, it’s going to be a great season for me and for the team as well,” NMU defenseman Brock Maschmeyer said.

Exhibition games are a great time to solidify the final roster and Coach Kyle talked about how that construction is coming along.

“I’m probably really certain on our top ten or eleven forwards and probably really certain on our top six Ds so we’re looking for who’s going to be our depth guy at D right now and we’re looking for who’s going to be fighting for that 12th spot in the lineup, along with who’s going to be first in order for depth. Then from that point on, it depends on what guys show us and how they grow,” said Kyle.

The Wildcats open regular season play this Saturday as they travel to Wisconsin to take on the Badgers.