Warriors on Ice
An interview with Joey Walsh
Published: Friday, November 5, 2010
Updated: Thursday, November 11, 2010 12:11
East Stroudsburg University junior ice hockey player, Joey Walsh, sat down on Sunday to talk about the warriors fall/winter 2010 season. Walsh is from Chalfont, Pennsylvania. Playing hockey since the age of six, Walsh came to ESU with love for the game but with no intentions to be on the team. He claims joining was a great decision. When joining the team, the Warriors were under construction and the program was being done over. Since then with some guidance from Coach Nowicki, successes have prevailed for Walsh and the rest of the team. Explaining the ins and outs of ESU ice hockey, Walsh reintroduced the game while hoping to gain a larger fan base from students and faculty of the university.
From the gear the players wear to the relationships among the teammates, Walsh helps us understand the ESU Warriors hockey team on and off the ice. He explains the hockey season as well as requirements to play on the team. Walsh also encourages new players to join the ice-hockey team.
Courier: Are you a starter on the ice?
Walsh: Yes, I play defense. There are two teams A and B that you try out for in hockey and I'm on first team which is mostly the more skilled players.
Courier: Since there is not an ice rink on campus, where are the Warriors home games played?
Walsh: It's called "The Rink" and it is 45 minutes away in Lehigh Valley. Unfortunately we don't get much support at our home games, because of the drive.
Courier: How often does the team practice?
Walsh: We practice once a week on Wednesday for three hours. Our games are on Saturday nights.
Courier: Is ice hockey considered a team or a club at ESU?
Walsh: It's a club sport and it is Division 3. We just moved up this year.
Courier: Do you need to keep a certain GPA (Grade Point Average)? Are there mandatory study hours?
Walsh: We have to have over a 2.0 to play. We don't have mandatory study hours, but we have things such as golf outings to raise money for the team, like fundraisers together. This helps us raise money for things throughout the season such as trips to away games and tournaments.
Courier: Can you give any dislikes about the team?
Walsh: The drive for practice is a hassle if there's not a close rink. I like the sport, and I don't like when it's not convenient to just play. The drive gets very annoying.
Courier: What is the team's record thus far?
Walsh: This year is horrible so far. We are four and three. Every year since freshman year we have been five and zero, but this year we moved up a league and it's becoming more difficult.
Courier: How many games are left in the season?
Walsh: At least 13 games are left; the season kind of just began. The season usually runs from September to March and we have had seven games so far.
Courier: Are there any rivalries on the ice?
Walsh: Our biggest rivalry is probably PSU Brandywine, one of the Penn State satellite campuses that we have never beaten. Alvernia College just joined our league and is also a big competition. We played them in the semi-finals last year and lost 4-3.
Courier: How many seniors are graduating from the team this season? Will their graduation affect the team?
Walsh: My freshman year was the biggest graduating year when we lost eleven, and I think we are losing 7 players this season. This is not too good because we only dress 17 skaters, but there are still a lot of good guys left and a lot of high school seniors considering joining the team next year.
Courier: Are there any standout players on the team?
Walsh: I'd say we have an even talented team, probably two or three standout players. Dan Galgano plays the best defense and Nick Lindino plays the best offense.
Courier: When is the next game?
Walsh: We don't have a game this week because of Halloween. There is one next Saturday against St. Vincent at Home. We just had a tournament in Pittsburgh last weekend, too.
Courier: How did the Pittsburgh tournament turn out?
Walsh: We won our first game 9-3 against Pitt. The second game we went to a shoot out (which is like a second overtime) against St. Vincent and lost 6-5.
Courier: Does the team get along well?
Walsh: After the tournament we all became very close especially with the new freshmen. Every year we go very far and into the playoffs, this builds our team relationships. I see this team doing very well this season because it's just beginning. There are a lot of kids now looking into ESU because of the growing hockey program.
Courier: Do you get hurt a lot?
Walsh: Well, I've seen a kid get is wrist basically snapped off once (laughs). I haven't been injured since I've played for ESU. Skates cause some nasty injuries on the ice, though. We lost a player due to a concussion, and he can't play with us anymore. There are a lot of knee and neck injuries. We also have athletic trainers to help us train and rehabilitate. There is no fighting allowed in college ice hockey, including NCAA.
Courier: What kind of gear do you wear? Is it an expensive sport?
Walsh: Players seem to like Baur hockey sticks. They're expensive. In a practice or a game, we wear a helmet, shoulder pads, elbow pads, knee pads, gloves, a girdle, and skates. Everything is padded & we carry our stick. We have new Reebok uniforms and Pro practice jerseys. They're real nice with nice stitching. We wear those because they are cheap, and we have to buy our own uniforms.
Courier: Do you have to pay to play on the team? Do you get anything for playing?
Walsh: It costs $1,100 for rookies to play and $950 for returning players. We get some money from the school that helps with uniforms, warm ups, and home and away gear. The rest of the money pays for our ice time such as practices, games and tournaments.