The IceHogs are back from their all-star break. They have 46 games under their belts. Now the fun begins.
The Hogs were back together Thursday afternoon for their first practice since the break feeling refreshed.
“I think it will actually energize not only myself but the boys and I think we’ll feed off of it and use it in a positive manner,” said goaltender Collin Delia.
The IceHogs have earned points in nine of their last 11 games. They sense that things have been coming together and that a playoff run is definitely in the cards.
“We seem to be clicking and everyone is jelling,” says Delia. “It’s just a great opportunity for us to challenge ourselves in the second half.”
“We play with a lot of pace and we like to drive teams back and kind of put them on their heels,” says forward Matthew Highmore one of two IceHogs’ all-stars. “Down the stretch if we can continue to do that and put ourselves in good spots I feel like we definitely have the tools to be a successful team.”
There’s a lot of parity within the Central Division and the Western Conference. The IceHogs’ 53 points are currently the fourth most in the West. The only team that has separated from the pack is the team that will come to the BMO Friday night the Manitoba Moose.
“They’ve got a high skill level,” says IceHogs’ head coach Jeremy Colliton of the Moose. “They spanked us here and I don’t think we were bad, but the mistakes we made they put in the back of the net.”
That was November 28th…the Moose beat the IceHogs 8-1. Colliton says the young IceHogs need some big games like this rematch.
“Hopefully we can play in some important games, some big games because that’s where you see the most development and the most gains as far as what we’re trying to do here.”
“We’re going to challenge whoever we need to and I think we have a lot of good momentum moving forward,” says Delia.