The Seneca Valley Raiders varsity ice hockey team is accustomed to a winning mindset, in conjunction with the entire Seneca Valley Ice Hockey Association.
While it has had its ups and downs this year, the varsity squad and the entire organization has continued to stay on that same track.
The team, through its first ten games, has compiled six wins and one tie to a tune of thirteen points. However, they have also added three losses to the total record, as noted by the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Hockey League.
The Raiders could easily be described as a physical, yet skilled team. They have collected a sum of 104 penalty minutes, but in the meantime they have scored thirty goals, while allowing just seventeen goals.
Most of the offensive skill can be attributed to senior forward Chris Lipnicky and junior forwards Noah Watkiss and Gio Sarachine. They have combined for nine goals, fourteen assists, and twenty-three points.
Those haven’t been the only offensive contributors, however. Sophomore forward Tyler Draper has recorded five goals, while senior defensemen Zach Broskey and Andrew Chiusano have also each recorded five points. Additionally, senior forwards Tyler Murphy, Braden White, and Ryan Sheils have tallied four points each.
All but three players have recorded at least one point.
On the goaltending end, senior Dylan Sloat and junior Logan Johnson have held down the fort. Sloat has one shutout to his credit, in addition to four wins, a tie, a 1.67 goals against average, and a .934 save percentage. Johnson has two wins, as well as a 1.71 goals against average and a .938 save percentage, to go along with only allowing five goals in three games.
While Seneca’s 6-3-1 record may seem impressive to the common eye, they still face many challenges in front of them.
Their six wins have come against Armstrong, Canon-McMillan, Cathedral Prep, Butler (twice), and Upper St. Clair. Four of those five teams sit in the AAA Division’s bottom half, with the exception of Armstrong.
In their three losses, Seneca has only mustered one goal in each game. Such offense won’t be suitable if they expect to keep pace and gain ground on North Allegheny, Pine-Richland, and Central Catholic (all of whom they have lost to).
In the Raiders’ last ten regular season games, they will travel to Upper St. Clair, Peters Township, North Allegheny, Armstrong, Cathedral Prep, and Bethel Park. They will have the opportunity to host Bethel Park, Canon-McMillan, Central Catholic, and Pine-Richland.
It will certainly be a challenge for these Raiders, but with a team that combines twelve seniors, experienced coaching, and unquestionable skill, it will certainly be another intriguing ride for the varsity squad.