Varsity hockey falls to Baldwin, but Colin Rice Shines
By: Reese Hamm
Monday night, the Quakers hosted the Baldwin Highlanders in their last home game of the season. The team came in not expecting much as they were playing a team that has gone undefeated the entire season.
Before facing the Quakers, the Highlanders were 14-0 on the season. After the game, the Highlanders are now 15-0. Although that may seem disappointing, it was the complete opposite.
Going into the game, the opposing team would put up a big fight. Many players and fans expected the Quakers to get blown out. They only let up three goals, losing 3-0. This was however not a loss for the team as the Highlanders have scored, on average, 4.57 goals a game.
The Quakers have not had the strongest season. With only two games left, they are now 7-9-0, which is a step up from last season. The last few years have been a transitional period since the team has lost many great players due to graduation.
Senior night featured many key players over the years: Ethan Caldwell, Chris Barefoot, Josh Bemis, Colin Rice, and Haley Steffey. One of the most outstanding players on the team is the starting goaltender, Colin Rice.
Rice has played on the team for all four years and he sure has made an impact. He has not always started but did fight for the position his freshman and sophomore year. Rice stated that the transition from being a backup to a starter was “definitely a challenge.”
Rice had a tremendous performance in the game against Baldwin. He faced 37 shots and saved 34 of them, making his save percentage for the game .919 (1.000 being all shots are saved). His saves last night also increased his overall save percentage to .891. During the first period, there were no goals scored. Through the second and third period, three goals were scored and two of them were power plays.
One of the captains and four-year letter winner, Chris Barefoot, stated that although
Rice is not a captain, “He tries to motivate on and off the ice. He always tries to talk to the players to motivate them [during a game].”
Rice is the only goalie on the team. If he were to get hurt at any point in the season, Barefoot would take over. He however hasn’t played in that position since 7th grade. When asked if he could fill Rice’s shoes on the ice, he said “Heck no….Colin [Rice] is a great goalie and has given us a chance to win many of our games this season.”
Heading into the game, Rice was expecting to put up a good fight, considering that's all they could really do since their team is much larger. What challenged him the most was the mental aspect. He said that he couldn’t let a goal or a teammates injury get to him, he had to keep his head in the game.
Both Rice and Barefoot said they are very confident going into playoffs, being the no. 1 seed in their division. Rice added that the team is really starting to buy into their coaches system and have been really building on their teamwork.
With only a couple more games left in the season and maybe only one in the postseason, Rice will not be ending his hockey career here. He hopes to play on the club team at West Virginia University next winter.