Div. II hockey to face Hawkeye, Div. III takes on Wheaton

By James Cantagallo

The hockey teams will look to rebound after a rough weekend at the RMU Showcases.

The Div. II hockey team will have its final home series of the fall semester this weekend against the University of Iowa (4-7-1).

The Huskies (9-8-1) will face off against Iowa at 8:30 p.m. Friday and 5:30 p.m. Saturday at the Fox Valley Ice Arena in Geneva.

“Iowa is a very good team,” said head coach Chuck Rinaldo. “These are two league games that we play this coming weekend. That makes them even more important because we are striving to find a way to win the league.”

NIU will look to pick up where it left off in its win against Robert Morris University-Maroon.

“We just have to build on the win we got [Sunday],” Rinaldo said. “We got back to our roots, and [we are] working hard and finding ways to score goals.”

A key for the Huskies this weekend will be their ability to get off to a fast start, something they struggled with last weekend.

“We have to play a good first period,” said team captain Nick Remley. “If we play a good first period in any game we usually are able to hang on and keep putting the pedal down. We feel like we are the better team, and we just [have] to go prove it in the first period and give them no hope that they can hang around.”

The Div. III hockey team will look to snap its six-game losing streak this weekend against Wheaton College.

The Huskies (1-13-1) will play a winless Wheaton College team (0-8) at 8:50 p.m. Friday and 9 p.m. Saturday at the Center Ice of DuPage in Glen Ellyn.

“It is going to be interesting to see how we do in the first and second periods, and see if we can play a complete game the best we can with 12 guys,” said team captain JC Weems.

NIU knows it’s in for a tough test against a rough Wheaton team.

“Wheaton is a hard-nosed team. They are chippy and get in your face,” Weems said. “They generally have one line that is pretty solid, but everyone else is extremely beatable.”

Weems believes the key for the Huskies this weekend will be their ability to take advantage of power play opportunities.

“Our power play was actually well done last weekend,” Weems said. “We got tons of chances off of it. It was just capitalizing. We are not taking enough shots, and that’s what we have to work on.”