Expectations high as Quaker Valley eyes another title
TribLIVE Sports Videos
The Quaker Valley Quakers are determined to call themselves Class A state champions for a second consecutive time when this season comes to an end.
“I will stop at nothing to have that feeling again,” senior forward Clayton Bouchard said.
Expectations are understandably high this season, and losing games or not playing to their potential would be counterproductive to achieving their goals.
“If we don't play the hockey that we're expected to play, that's going to be a setback for us, especially because we have high expectations for the season,” Bouchard said.
The players will have to put last year behind them but also build on the success they had.
“Last year was last year. The sooner the kids get their eyes focused on this year, the better,” Quaker Valley coach Kevin Quinn said.
Quinn said Quaker Valley was an underdog last season. Now, it will be the most hunted team in Class A.
“It's like a different year, a different battle,” he said.
Quinn does not want his players to be arrogant or overconfident, but as reigning state champions, that might be harder do accomplish than he would like.
“We're not going out acting like the best, but inside, we really do (feel that way),” Bouchard said.
“We just expect to go out there and win every game.”
Four skaters and a goaltender have left, but with the majority of last year's team returning, including a substantial junior class, depth is the team's greatest strength.
“Add it all up and we have a lot of experience coming back and you can overcome the loss of a few kids,” Quinn said.
Stepping into bigger leadership roles will be Bouchard, senior Ryan Dickson and junior Ryan Lottes.
“I know that I will have to be a little more vocal, and I'm going to be comfortable fitting into that role,” Bouchard said. “I know that I respect (my teammates) and they respect me, so it works mutually.”
Some players have stepped into new roles on the ice in the offseason, bringing flexibility to the team.
“Anybody can work with anybody. I think that's going to help us,” Bouchard said.
One thing that won't change this season is the team's commitment to defensive play on both sides of the ice.
“That's something that we prided ourselves on last year,” Bouchard said.
That means keeping shots-against low and capitalizing on opponents' mistakes.
“We always want to be difficult to play against,” Quinn said.
Quaker Valley also has been effective on special teams, capitalizing on power-play opportunities.
“When teams are undisciplined, we make them pay,” Quinn said.
Last season, the Quakers had an impressive power play, with a success rate over 40 percent.
“We're working on all those things right now because people stepped up into those roles,” Quinn said.
“If you want to win again, everyone has to step up and do more.”
Amanda Iannuzzi is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
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.
- Steelers RB Bell smoking marijuana before traffic stop but denied being high, records show
- Distracted Steelers show nothing in loss to Eagles
- NFL could delay punishment
- Rossi: Time with Penguins taught Bylsma importance of stability
- Pitcairn police department to carry Narcan for heroin overdoses
- Steelers notebook: Keisel dresses, but doesn’t play
- LaBar: Hulk Hogan wants to fight Brock Lesnar?
- Youngwood shelter removes 44 dogs, 9 cats from shuttered Fayette SPCA
- New Kensington slaying victims identified
- Will soft foes mean fast start to the season for Pitt football team?
- 6 arrested after brief SWAT standoff in Fineview