The University of Miami Men’s Hockey team played in Orlando Friday and Saturday against the University of Florida Gators, dropping both games. The fifth ranked Hurricanes came into the weekend after dropping two games in Alabama last week and looked to rebound but just fell short. Friday’s game found the Canes trailing 3-0 to the Gators off quick goals in the first period. The Canes would rally back to within one but couldn’t hold on to the momentum, losing the game by a final of 5-3.
Saturday would see a different type of game, with leads exchanging several times, including the Canes once again rallying from a 3-1 deficit to tie the game and eventually take the lead. In a faster paced match-up the Canes would go ahead 6-4 but once again the Gators would score to pull within one. In the third period a penalty shot would be awarded to the Gators and it proved to be successful once again tying the game 6-6. Final score of Saturday’s game Gators 7 Canes 6, the Canes will be back in action again next weekend against Embry Riddle January 18-19.
Losing games to lower ranked Alabama and UF could prove costly to the fifth ranked Canes as both teams are lower ranked and look to move up in the rankings. The top two ranked teams will go directly to Nationals while teams 2-10 will go to Regionals in February. If the Canes don’t pull some wins together they could see their season that started out promising (14-0-1) end in disappointment as they drop out of the top 10. Miami has lost 6 of its past 7 games and look to regain momentum on their season as they travel to take on Embry Riddle who they were dominant against early in the season.
The Canes have shown resiliency however after dealing with several injuries, including losing two of their three top players on its first line at one point. As the team gets healthy look for them to make a serious push into regionals and nationals. Let’s not forget, this same team just two years ago before converting to Ice Hockey won a national championship as a roller hockey team.