Last week was interesting for the Griffs, as Mother Nature decided to interfere with our schedule. Last Tuesday and Wednesday, a snow storm for the ages was predicted for Buffalo and many other cities and states across America. Tuesday night most of the schools and colleges in Buffalo were canceled for the next day.
Despite all of the wishing and praying of Canisius students, school would remain in session for Wednesday in Griffville - no snow day for the Griffs. Canisius seemed to have made the right decision in calling the weather forecasters' bluff, as the snowfall didn't seem to be as impressive as promised in Buffalo.
Considering Buffalo State Sports Arena was closed for the day, practice was canceled for the Ice Griffs and instead, the team met for a video session and mental practice. Coach decided that in place of a physical workout, our brains would do the work for the day. We met and went over video in preparation for the game the following night. Thursday night came and the boys felt fresher and more rested than ever. Considering Monday had been a day off and Wednesday's practice was canceled, we had only practiced once during the week.
The restful week proved to pay off as the Griffs took a commanding lead early in the game against Robert Morris. After a strong first period, the Griffs allowed the Colonials to get back into the game. Both teams battled back and forth, up and down the ice until near the end of the third period when we found ourselves up a goal but in some penalty trouble with a minute and a half to go. After some stellar goaltending from Dan Morrison and some gutsy penalty killing, the Griffs sealed the deal and got the win.
On Friday afternoon, the Griffs loaded the bus after a quick practice and headed to Pittsburgh, Pa. for the next game in the series. After a few hours on the road, we noticed we were getting close as we began to see more and more Pittsburgh Steelers decorations and flags on the sides of houses and cars. The Steelers were about to compete in the Super Bowl later on in the weekend and everyone was showing their support.
On Saturday night we knew we were in for a tough game against the Colonials, considering the intensity of the game a couple nights before. There were no surprises in the contest as both teams battled again right down to the last whistle, but this time Robert Morris came out on top. We felt we played a strong game, but a couple of lapses here and there will cost us the game in this league.
The Griffs now go into the final few weeks of the season with three of our biggest rivals coming up on the schedule. The next three weekends we will face RIT, Mercyhurst and Niagara. We have had great battles with all three of these schools in the past and know that these games will not be any different. We know it will be tough, but these types of games are the reasons we all play hockey. Our focus is now on Friday night, as we travel to Rochester to face the Tigers in what is sure to be an electric atmosphere as we inch closer to the beginning of the playoffs.
See you at the rink,
Scott Jenks, #3