The Guelph Gryphon training camp finally came to an end after a long and exciting month. We finished the training camp with a trip to New York. Here we faced off against Syracuse and Quinnipiac, which were both very fast and aggressive teams. After the games we had some team bonding in New York City. Having the entire day to ourselves gave us enough time to see most of the major tourist sites, shop and share lots of laughs.
Playing teams from the NCAA division was great practice for the regular season that kicked off with a road trip to Sudbury and North Bay the following weekend. Both Laurentian and Nipissing are new to the league, but we had no plans of showing any mercy. Our goal was to win every battle and stay mentally tough for the entire 60 minutes. Both teams could simply not out skate us. We were victorious in both games and now we were anxiously awaiting the home opener! Less than a week later, that day had come. Going into the game we knew University of Toronto was a big and hardworking team, therefore we had to be both physically and mentally ready to perform at our best. The first two periods of the game did not exhibit the grit and strength we have been working on the past month. During the intermission, we all sat in the room and discussed how to make ourselves better as a unit. It is important to have contribution from all team members in times of struggle, especially when communicating on how to make the situation better. This talk ignited a fire in our bellies that was not seen in the previous periods. We were skating faster, winning more battles and playing a simpler, yet effective game. Unfortunately it was not enough to pull off a win but we took some very key lessons from that game. Our best efforts should start from the first puck drop because the teams of this league will punish us if we are not giving 100%. This was a wake up call for the Guelph Gryphons. Wins will not come with ease; each game will require an aggressive and talented group of players that have a will to succeed. This mind set was seen in our second game of the week against Ryerson where we prevailed with a 2-0 victory.
It is understood that mistakes will happen every game regardless of how well we are playing, but it is how we respond to these mistakes will define who our team choses to be.
I hope everyone had a great thanksgiving!
Bye for now,