Fox Chapel varsity hockey team returns to ice
TribLIVE Sports Videos
After not having a team last season due to a player shortage, the Fox Chapel High School hockey team is ready to hit the ice for a full season.
The team will be coached by Rick Villani, who was instrumental in getting a three-game season in last year.
“Halfway through last season, we made a strong effort to at least get a partial season in,” he said. “Phone calls were made to the players we had and they were all for it. So we played three games and we won all three. It generated a lot of interest for this season.”
Not having a team, Villani said, created a void for the players, coaches and parents.
“We went to work to ensure that we would have a team this year,” Villani said.
Actually, there will be three teams this year.
Fox Chapel will have a varsity team and two middle school teams.
“At the varsity level, we'll have 20-24 players. We didn't have enough to have a JV team so everyone will play on the varsity,” Villani said. “There's a lot of varsity players that obviously don't have a lot of experience so we've scheduled some 16-and-under scrimmages where we'll only play the younger kids. That way, they'll gain some valuable experience.
“We won't invite the more experienced players to these scrimmages and they understand what we're doing.”
It took a lot of hard work to get a team back on the ice.
“There were a lot of emails sent and a lot of word-of-mouth,” he said. “We got a lot of help from the hockey parents and the school board. There's been a great feedback. We've had a great tradition and we wanted to salvage the program. The response has been excellent.”
The Foxes will be competing in the WPIHL Class AAA again this year.
“We're a little behind right now as far as scheduling but we'll be practicing twice a week,” Villani said. “It's time to get Fox Chapel hockey back on the map. To that extent, we're going to build from the ground up. We want to have strong middle school programs and we want to be competitive at every level.
“We've got some excellent coaches who have made the commitment to build a hockey program that the community can be proud of.”
Bo Schwabb will be the middle school coach.
“He's a great young man who's very knowledgeable and enthusiastic,” Villani said. “Dan Lagiovale, who was with me at Shady Side Academy, will be the assistant coach and Glen Miske, a hockey parent, will also be helping us coach at various levels.
“We're excited, we're optimistic and we're ready to start playing some hockey.”
Marty Stewart is a sports editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-782-2123 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.