Gateway hockey to move to Open class
By Michael Love
Published: Wednesday, June 19, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
With the loss of several key players to graduation and its starting goaltender to a Junior team in Florida before his senior season, Gateway varsity ice hockey team officials have decided to move the young team from Class AA to the Open class in the PIHL for the 2013-14 season.
“It will give us a chance to develop our younger players,” Gateway head coach Gene Perhac said.
“We didn't think we were going to be able to do that to the fullest extent at AA. We have a good group this year, but they're young and small yet. To put them out against the likes of Latrobe and Chartiers Valley this season, we didn't see too many benefits in that. Latrobe only lost three players from their state-championship team.”
Perhac said a majority of the team members will be freshmen and sophomores.
He said only two seniors are expected to take the ice for the upcoming season — Brenden Hamilton and Zach Dusch — and there will be only a couple of juniors on the roster.
“A lot of young kids will be moving up to varsity to fill in key roles,” Perhac said.
“It's a big jump for some of the players. There is a strong class of freshmen (from 2012-13) moving up.”
Perhac said the PIHL has been organizing the four classifications the past couple of weeks, and the final alignment should be set in stone early next month.
A couple of other teams moved to the Open class, and the close to two dozen squads are expected to make it the biggest division.
Perhac said everyone understands there will be a little bit more traveling involved with playing in the Open class. Teams in the Open class range from Altoona to West Virginia and up to Erie.
“We want them to grow,” Perhac said.
“We know that no matter what division they are in, it might be a trying year. But in the Open class, they will be able to be in more competitive games.”
Perhac said this only is a one-year deal. After that, the team should be a more seasoned group and ready to climb back to AA.
“There are a lot of positives that can come from this,” Perhac said. “It's not the ideal situation and where we want to be, but given the circumstances, it seems to be the best thing right now.”
Gateway qualified for the AA playoffs in 2012-13. As the No. 10 seed, the Gators lost a 4-3 heartbreaker to Hampton in the first round at Ice Connection of Pittsburgh.
Michael Love is a staff writer with Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5825 or at email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mars hockey endures emotional week of highs, lows
- Third-period surge carries Thomas Jefferson past Freeport
- Pine-Richland hockey uses strong third period to vanquish Butler
- Hampton ice hockey gears up for game against Greater Latrobe
- Shaler hockey team learns from loss
- Unger leading talented crop of Bishop Canevin forwards
- Shady Side Academy skaters make tourney semifinals
- Plum set to face Bishop Canevin