With all of college hockey playing conference-only schedules in order to have a season amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Arizona State was worried it would have to cancel its season. The team was hoping to find a conference to latch onto so they could have a shot at the tournament.
Putting together effective lines may be the most difficult decision a hockey coach has to make. Lines that don’t mesh well together can result in a team’s most skilled players underperforming, while the best teams get the most out of even their third and fourth lines — typically made up of its less-talented players.
Freshman forwards Matty Beniers, Thomas Bordeleau and Brendan Brisson were newcomers, while sophomore forward Johnny Beecher and sophomore defenseman Cam York were part of the 2020 team. If selected, players would represent the U.S. at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship, which will take place in a bubble in Edmonton, Alberta from Dec. 25 to Jan. 5.
But for the freshmen on this year’s Michigan hockey team, that experience was short lived. When a COVID-19 cluster was identified on Sept. 17 on the floor that many players were living on in South Quad, they made the decision to move out as quickly as possible.