Mark Mitchell, Staff Writer
A new semester is ready for kick off and so are the all the athletic teams at Utica College. It is a new year and that means a new season for all of our fierce athletes to chase down a national championship.
With a new year about to take full swing, Utica College fans have high expectations for the fall athletic teams around campus.
The Utica College football team is looking to have a bounce back season as they ended last year with a 3-7 record. The team went 2-5 in the Empire 8 conference and 3-2 in home games.
Jason Powles, a professor at Utica College and a news anchor for WKTV, is excited to see what the football team has in store this year.
“When you’re talking college football, the UC football team always comes to play at home,” Powles said. “Almost every time I have seen them play at home, they usually win. It’s a great atmosphere to come and watch a football game, the fans really get into it and the players feed off that, when the fans are into the game the players play even better.”
Utica College and city of Utica is extremely proud of and dedicated to Pioneer hockey. The men’s hockey team has a lot of unfinished business this year, after winning their division and not being selected for the United Collegiate Hockey Conference (UCHC) tournament last season. Last season left a very sour taste in the mouth of not only the athletes but the fans as well.
David Cooney, sports director for Utica College’s radio station WPNR 90.7 and senior at Utica, is expecting the members of the men’s hockey team to be very driven this season.
“After getting snubbed by the selection committee, I believe we can expect a team with bad intentions this season,” Cooney said. “Certain schools have a certain swagger and at Utica College our swagger is hockey. On a Friday night during a UC hockey game, you will hear some of the loudest and most passionate fans in college hockey.”
Hermina Garic, a senior at Utica College, spoke about her first experience at a Utica College hockey game, not having any prior knowledge of the sport.
“Going to a Utica College hockey game made me like hockey and I found myself cheering and doing stuff I normally would not do,” Garic said. “It’s cool knowing some of the players from class and being able to cheer for them, it’s like a little release valve.”
Michael Santiago, a senior on campus, is excited to see the turnout at this year’s first UC hockey game due to all the hype surrounding what happened last year.
“The energy you feel at the arena is like no other and we are very blessed to be able to call the Adirondack Bank Center our home for hockey games,” Santiago said.
The Utica College women’s lacrosse team has also been building a team to that is going make some serious noise this year. Last year the team went 10-7 overall, going 5-3 in the Empire 8 Conference. The offense was able to net 222 goals on the season.
Cooney is very much looking forward to see how the women’s lacrosse team does this year.
“I’m excited to see the women’s lacrosse team because of how well they did last year and just by how they have been developing as a team,” Cooney said.