Inability to score coupled with small mistakes in the third period cost TCU hockey the game Friday night, falling 5-3 to Texas Tech.
“We lost sight of our team play and everyone wanted to [score] themselves,” team captain Michael Authier said. “If we buckled down and really did what we’ve been working on, it would have worked out.”
He said the team needed to work harder in the last period and keep up the momentum throughout the game.
Freshman forward Andrew Koch said the team was more tired than expected going into the third period. He said better conditioning would make the team more successful in the future.
Head coach Derrell Upton was upset the Frogs let the win slip away.
“We can’t afford to make mistakes in the other team’s end,” Upton said. “It might seem minute because it’s so far away from our end. But if we make a mistake from 200 feet away, it ends up in the back of our net in 10 seconds.”
Upton took some responsibility for the loss. He said he needed to do a better job at preparing the team.
Although it was only the second game of the season, Upton said there was a big difference on the ice. The team was more comfortable playing together, improving how well the team performed this week.
“You could see it,” Authier said. “They got the puck and they took their extra second and made a smarter decision with it.”
The Frogs' newfound confidence contributed to three goals on the board for TCU. Two were scored by freshmen.
Koch scored the first goal of the season with an assist from senior forward Matt Macfarland, tying the game at one.
Fellow freshman forward Bobby Baumeister scored the second goal of the night with an assist from senior defenseman Chris Finn.
Texas Tech was consistent throughout the game. The Red Raiders took control in the second period when they scored back-to-back goals, pushing the lead 4-2.
With just over a minute left in the period, TCU took advantage of a power play to put the Frogs in reach 4-3. Junior forward Jake Wallstedt scored the third goal with the assist from senior defenseman Jon Helton and Authier.
TCU allowed Texas Tech to score late in the third, putting the win out of reach for the Frogs. The Red Raiders earned their first win of the season.
The vast improvement over a week of practice gives TCU hope to earn its first win Saturday afternoon.
Koch said his expectations are simple.
“Come out and get a win,” Koch said. “We’re going to what we did in the second period tonight but for three periods instead of just one.”
The series continues Saturday at 4:00 p.m. at the NYTEX Sports Centre in North Richland Hills.