The hockey team had a new coach for the season and looked to bounce back after a disappointing end to the season last year. They had a big senior class who was ready to make their last year a memorable one. They finished the season with a 14-13-0 record, with a 9-7 record in the Capital Hockey Conference. The boys had some big wins over a high seeded New Albany and beat rival Olentangy in a shootout in the first matchup. In the league, senior forward Zach Miller led the team in all offensive categories, with 12 goals, 11 assists and a total of 23 points. The team lost its first playoff game to Olentangy 4-0 in a tough battle, ending the seniors time with the Pioneers. Senior goalie Nathan Thompson earned second-team ALL-CHC and had a 86% save percentage. Key returners for next year will be forward Cameron Miller, defenseman Jake Morrone, and goalie Kyle Diehr. New coach J.D. Damrath was pleased with his first season as the Pioneers head coach, “Coming from out of town, I didn’t really know what to expect but I thought we battled through our tough times and each player grew as a person.” As a senior leader Josh Gutkoski played a big roll on the team and wanted to lead by example, “For my senior season I wanted to have the most fun possible with all of my buddies that I’ve played with growing up. As a leader, I wanted to show the younger kids how to play the right way and show them what it means to be apart of the Orange Hockey Program.” Next year the team will look to bounce back in a big way next year.
Written By: Tyler Ross