NEWS & EVENTS

Dordt College News

Blades Begin Season With A Pair of Games Against Augustana (IL)

October 8, 2013

On Friday and Saturday (October 11 and 12), the Dordt College Blades will take to the ice for the first time this season   when they travel to Davenport, Iowa to take on Augustana (IL). The Blades, now a full member of the MACHA conference, will face the Vikings in a non-conference game, as Augustana is in their probationary year of play.

John Langeraap will be behind the bench again this year, but in a new role, as he takes on the head coaching duties for the Blades after serving as an assistant the last four seasons.  Joining him, as an assistant coach, will be Jon Gesink, a recent graduate of Dordt College. “Gesink brings with him five seasons of playing experience for the Blades, with two trips to the ACHA National Tournament.  He knows what it takes to play at the level to get to Nationals and brings that passion with him in his transition from player to coach,” remarked Langeraap.

Langeraap looks to get major contributions from senior netminder Riley Braun and forwards Eric Huitsing and Nic Enerson:  “Braun returns as starting goalie again this season. He started every game last season and is a force in the net, stopping more shots than most goalies in the league. Riley is a leader both on and off the ice and is one of the team captains this season.

We will be looking for senior Eric Huitsing and junior Nic Enerson to lead the team offensively. They are both captains and leaders of their lines for setting up plays and making scoring opportunities.”  Braun, a native of Altona, Manitoba, played 1248 minutes in goal for the Blades last season, finishing the year with a .882 save percentage and one shut-out.  Huitsing (Edmonton, Alberta) led the Blades in scoring last season with nine goals and nine assists.  Enerson (Byron, Minnesota) ended last season with seven goals and two assists.

Key newcomers for the Blades include Ross Van Gaalen, a netminder from Sioux Center that will get the nod in the season opener against Augustana.  Noted Langeraap, “I coached Ross when he played youth hockey and from what we’ve seen at preseason practices, I have confidence that Ross will challenge Riley for time between the pipes.  Levi Minderhoud (Mission, British Columbia) and Preston Crich (Lucknow, Ontario) are two freshman forwards to watch this season. They both have good hockey sense, are aggressive and don't mind mixing it up on the boards.  Freshman blueliners, Alex Ten Napel (Sioux Center, Iowa), Andrew Koetsier (Listowel, Ontario) and Lucas Koomans (Emo, Ontario) add a lot of depth to our defense. All three guys are good puck movers that stay calm and think when under pressure. Ten Napel is a force in the corners and in front of the net and Koetsier and Koomans can go end to end adding another dimension to our offense.”

“We have more overall depth on the bench this season then the past few. We have solid defense and goalkeeping. Our trouble, in past seasons, was putting the puck in the back of the net, but with the depth of our forward lines and help from our defense, we will create more scoring opportunities, we just have to make sure to capitalize on those opportunities.  We play in a very competitive conference, with all ranked teams from last season and it includes last season’s Silver Division Champion (Wisconsin-Platteville). Our non-conference games are equally tough with mostly ranked and top competitive teams to round out or schedule. I look forward to seeing our guys complete and another great season of hockey,” remarked Langeraap.

The Vikings, who are already six games into their 2013-2014 season, are 3-3 with a pair of losses to Bradley, a split with Illinois State and two wins over Wisconsin-Platteville’s second team . No additional game or individual player stats are currently available for the ACHA Division 2 team.

This is the first ever meeting between the two teams.

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