By Jared Bravard, @JaredBravard
After an extra week off, the Cyclones (9-1) are ready to take the ice. They play the Missouri State Ice Bears (0-3-1) for the second time in three weeks as the two teams met on Jan. 8-9 in Springfield, MO.
Head Coach Jason Fairman said there is a slight concern as two weeks between games isn’t good when starting the season back up after winter break, but that is the nature of this season. Regardless of the outside circumstances, Fairman is optimistic.
“I’m always confident in our guys,” Fairman said. “Ever since I arrived here, I expect us to win every game, every weekend. That’s the thought now as well.”
The Cyclones picked up the sweep when these two teams met earlier this month by way of a 6-4 win and 5-4 shootout win.
Missouri State enters the series after a pair of losses — 13-3 and 4-0 — to the Lindenwood Lions last weekend.
Junior C.J. Banser knows the team is ready to be back out on the ice for another series.
“The boys are excited to get back out there and play,” Banser said. “It was a tough first semester not being able to play the entire time.”
Whether the Cyclones are playing a game every weekend or not, Fairman has his focus on one thing, as he normally does.
“I just want to make sure we’re getting better every week,” Fairman said. “That’s something we’ve done for the most part in the past so hopefully this year isn’t too different.”
The Cyclones have played ten games so far this season, much less than a normal season. Even with the schedule changes and increased time between games, the team has gotten closer and has meshed well together, according to Banser.
“We’ve had a lot of time to get to know each other so I think it correlates on the ice,” Banser said.
Iowa State enters the weekend averaging 5.0 goals per game and 2.3 goals against. Missouri State has scored 11 goals and given up 28 goals in its first four games.
The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and 5:00 p.m. on Saturday at the Ames/ISU Ice Arena with limited tickets available at the gate. A stream will be available through Stretch (link: https://portal.stretchinternet.com/isuhockey/).
“We’re putting the puck in the net. Everyone’s got a role on our team,” Banser said. “If we keep doing what we’re doing and play our role as a player, I think we can go far this year.”