Hudson Valley Ice Hockey Preview
Vikings Open Season on Wednesday
CONTACT: Steve Mullen (518) 629-8063
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Tuesday, October 25, 2005
When Matt Alvey became Hudson Valley Community College's hockey coach in August 2002 the goal always was to get back into the NJCAA Tournament and win a national championship.
Although last year's team fell short of the championship, it did manage to post an 11-8-1 record and get selected to play in the NJCAA Tournament. In fact, the class of 2005 helped Hudson Valley improve eight games from Alvey's first season in which the Vikings were 3-14.
Gone from last season are 11 student-athletes that posted a 19-17-2 record in two years.
Despite the loss of a large number of two-year standouts, the cupboard is not completely empty entering the 2005-06 season.
Sophomore Jeff Beecher (South Glens Falls/South Glens Fall High School) earned Second Team All-American recognition last season after leading the Vikings with 21 goals and 21 assists in his freshman campaign. Several of Beecher's goals were assisted by sophomore Chris Gramlich (Philadelphia, PA/Bishop McDevitt High School), who had five goals and 13 assists a year ago.
Freshmen forwards Dane Anderson (Newburgh/Newburgh Free Academy), Eric Park (Los Angeles/Green Pastures Academy), Kevin O'Connell (Schenectady/Colonie High School) and Jeffrey Reinhart (Troy/Lansingburgh High School) all will be expected to provide scoring punch up front right away.
Drew Luther (Guilderland/Guilderland High School) and Mike Devoid (Berwick, ME/Noble High School) each played 20 games on defense for the Vikings last season. Luther finished the year with three goals and 12 assists and Devoid had a goal and three assists. Sophomore Brian Maher (Bethlehem/Bethlehem High School) and freshman Brett Holmes (Claverack/Hudson High School) also should be among Hudson Valley's top defensemen.
Sophomore Carmen Guyer (Melrose/Hoosic Valley High School) played six games in goals as a freshman and posted two shutouts. He'll be challenged for the starting netminder position by freshmen Devon Lent (Ballston Spa/Saratoga Springs High School).
"We're a young team but we can get back to the national tournament," Alvey said. "We'll need to play hard to win though."
Hudson Valley's 25-game schedule is its most aggressive in the 15 year history of the program. In addition to their 14 games against Region III competition, the Vikings also have two games scheduled against County College of Morris, Nassau Community College, Suffolk Community College and the University at Albany's club team. Hudson Valley will open its season in Lansingburgh against the Hudson Valley Eagles Junior B team at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, October 26.