Ice Miners take down Murray to start hockey season
The Park City Ice Miners hockey team started its season off on the right skate, with a 7-2 win over rival Murray on Wednesday.
“It was a big win for us,” coach Josh Angevine said.
Both the Miners and Murray lost a considerable number of seniors last season. But Angevine said the Miners return a great deal of depth, including senior Marc Colaizzi, the team’s leading goal scorer from last year, though it was junior Nick Lippman and senior Jack Ehlers who led the team in goals Wednesday with two apiece.
Angevine said Murray did not have the depth that it had last year.
“It’s amazing how much the teams can vary from year to year,” Angevine said regarding his view of the region so far. “Murray was a powerhouse last year and they lost seven starters, so it’s really unpredictable this early in the season.”
He commended his team for its effort to win the season opener, which the Miners lost 8-1 last season, saying Park City hockey “rose to the occasion and got the job done.”
A fitting compliment for a team he says is meant to function at an “almost professional” level.
“Once we step on the ice for game warmups, we consider it a business meeting,” Angevine said. “We are there to do business.”
So far, business has been good for the Miners.
Murray and Park City traded games last season, with Murray eliminating the Miners in the playoffs, so the victory early in the season bodes well for Park City. Plus, the Miners are deep.
Angevine said the team has 20 skaters and three goalkeepers, with junior Andrew Pederson slated to start in the net once the football season ends.
In the meantime, sophomore Cooper Strople and freshman Colten McIntyre are patrolling the crease.
Of the team’s 23-person roster, 11 are returning varsity players.
As a squad, Angevine said the team’s main strength is its intensity, adding that the team’s will to win was already apparent in its two preseason games — against UCI North, which the Miners beat 6-2, and against reigning champions, Viewmont, which defeated PCHS 4-3.
“That game against Viewmont was probably one of the most physical and intense games I’ve ever seen in Utah,” Angevine said.
The team will need that intensity if it hopes to complete the goal Angevine has set for the season: an unapologetic bid for the state championship.
“Our focus is winning this year,” he said.
The Miners will play their first home game against Wasatch at 6:30 p.m. at the PC Ice Arena on Wednesday. Entrance is free.
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Park City plays in the toughest region in 5A, and coach Purcell believes that mental toughness will help turn the season around.