Hockey prepares for weekend roadtrip

Kent+State+forward%2C+Jon+Buttitta%2C+%2314%2C+defends+the+puck+during+their+3-2+victory+over+the+University+of+Pittsburgh+Friday%2C+Nov.+6%2C+2015.

Kent State forward, Jon Buttitta, #14, defends the puck during their 3-2 victory over the University of Pittsburgh Friday, Nov. 6, 2015.

Chris Yamnitsky

The Kent State Hockey Club used this week to focus on various aspects of their game. Coach Jim Underwood says special teams and traffic were key items of focus.

“We’ve had a lot of different concentrations in practice this week. We worked on our four on three power play and our power play in general. We really concentrated on special teams and killing penalties,” Underwood said. “We had a big emphasis on getting traffic in front of the net and getting shots through, which helps our goaltender fight the traffic in front and make the save as well.”

Junior forward T.J. West said he and his teammates need to focus more on what they are doing and take one period at a time.

“We worked a lot on getting in the goalies’ face and having strong sticks in front of the net,” West said. “We plan on not worrying too much about what the other team is doing, but really buckling our chin straps and bearing down.”

The Flashes are looking to rebound after dropping both games to Indiana Tech University this past weekend. Ahead of them are two away games against Mercyhurst University (17-1-1) and Rochester Institute of Technology (1-15-0).

“Mercyhurst we are very familiar with and have played them over the past years,” Underwood said. “We know they are going to have six skilled forwards that are pretty good and some defenseman that can make some plays. I think we will match up very well.”

The team’s main focus for this weekend is to get back on track and keep doing the small things that have helped them in the season, according to Underwood.

The Flashes take on Rochester Institute of Technology on Friday night at 8:30 p.m. and Mercyhurst University on Saturday at 5 p.m.

Chris Yamnitsky is a sports reporter for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]