The Lumberjacks came up one game short of the ACHA National Championship last season.
Returners like Ryan Patterson said coming that close makes them more hungry this go around.
“All the returning guys we got there last year and obviously we just came up short but I think it determined all of us and we all know we want to get back. We all got some good experience from it for sure,” Ryan Patterson, Third Year Sophomore Forward/Left Wing, said.
But this year’s team features plenty of youth, with 13 Freshmen joining the Lumberjacks.
“We going to be a little younger and probably a little smaller than last year so we will just have to wait and see once we’re on the ice every day how that plays out but we still want to finish checks and skate that’s going to be our bread and butter, skate and back pressure and make sure we are moving our feet all the time,” Travis Rynchinski, Head Coach, said.
The players coming back to Bottineau from last season will play a big part in helping the newcomers along.
“Honestly just work ethic that’s all it takes especially playing in our rink here it’s nice and small. Just come out and put the work boots on, Patterson said.
The position that might have the most question marks is the goalie, with two newcomers in net for the Jacks this season.
“Mason and Billy are both solid in our preseason work so far so and we will let them dual it out. Losing an All-Region and All-tournament goalie last year obviously hurts us but I think we’ve got two guys who will fill those shoes well,” Rubchinski said.
DCB hopes to bring home the school’s first national title since joining the ACHA in 2017.