DE PERE, Wis. (WBAY) - The 2017 season marks trip number 17 to the NCAA tournament for the St. Norbert men’s hockey team.
It's been anything but a picture perfect season for the 21-5-1 Green Knights.
“This is a group has been a little bit like three four steps forward and one step back so we weren't sure how it was going to shake out,” said St. Norbert Head Coach Tim Coughlin.
After a sub-par regular season, they had to earn this year's NCAA bid on the road in the conference championship game at Adrian, erasing a late deficit no less.
“In the biggest challenges we've faced this year in all of the biggest test games for us we've stand up and answered the bell,” said Coghlin.
Despite dropping five games to unranked teams this year, the Green Knights battled their way to the NCAA tournament.
“The biggest takeaway I’d say is not taking anyone lightly. We did have some tough losses this year but it made our team stronger,” said St. Norbert goaltender TJ Black.
“We’ve played him in back to back circumstances and he's gotten all the big games down the stretch and it's been outstanding,” said Coghlin.
Black credits his success to the guys in front of him.
“I just need them to do the same thing they've been doing all year. I mean, they always play hard the defense gives me limited shots every game, limited scoring chances, and of course, they are always backchecking hard,” Coghlin.
No. 1 seeded Green Knights will play No. 2 Augsburg College at 7:00 P.M. on Saturday, March 18th.