Club hockey team opens season Friday against SMU

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    The TCU club hockey team opens its season tonight against SMU at the Ice Training Center in Richardson. First puck drops at 7:45 p.m.

    The club team was revitalized this semester after a group of students last spring decided to bring the sport back to TCU.

    “A lot of us did a lot of hard work over the summer to make it happen,” club president Ryan Acuff said. “We had conference calls every weekend. We had an agenda. A lot of people were willing to make it happen.”

    The team is currently operating on club dues, most of which goes toward paying for equipment and ice time at Nytex Sports Centre in a North Richland Hills.

    The team has 18 members and is looking for more.

    Blake Widmoyer who, along with Acuff, co-founded the club, said the camaraderie the team has shown early on has been impressive.

    “It would be great to have an NCAA team at TCU,” said Widmoyer, who is also the team’s general manager. “But it’s also great to have a team that guys that don’t have as much experience just getting out here and doing what they love.”

    Still, the team has some skilled players. Hockey might not seem like a big sport in Texas, but it’s more popular than you would think, club member Michael Authier said.

    “We’ve got a pretty good team so far,” Authier said. “We’re pretty talented. With the [Dallas] Stars being here [hockey] is a lot bigger than I had thought.”

    Now, with the team’s season almost here, Acuff and others on the squad are anxious to get things going.

    “Dreams come true,” Acuff said. “I’m really pumped for SMU. They’re excited to have us, too. I’m just really excited for it to take off.”

    What: TCU vs SMU
    When: Friday, 7:45 p.m.
    Where: Ice Training Center in Richardson