PHILIP TOR | STAFF REPORTER
After a short break, hockey has returned to Butler’s campus.
The first season back on the ice for the Butler University ice hockey team is well underway. After a long process of club membership, Bulldog hockey was able to secure a position in the American Collegiate Hockey Association, and have been competing at the Division III level.
The Bulldogs were able to put together a full roster of 20 men, led by sophomore and team president Noah Brayton.
“The interest was there to begin with,” Brayton said. “We knew coming in that there were a bunch of hockey players here, and that made it easy to get this going.”
Brayton went through an extensive process to get the hockey team back on campus.
“The most challenging part was handling the budget and creating a plan for the future,” Brayton said. “We don’t want to see the team fold like it did previously.”
Although the process was long, Brayton was grateful for the support the university offered throughout the setup.
“They offered a lot of help through the whole process,” he said. “They obviously want to make sure we have a plan and that’s why it takes such a long time.”
Hunter Byram, a sophomore defenseman, was excited at the opportunity to be able to play hockey at Butler.
“I’m excited to continue my hockey career, and to be part of the first team on the campus is a bonus” said Byram.
Being the first official year, the focus has mostly been on building up the program and recruiting for future seasons.
“We have a pretty solid team all around right now, and we’ve already started looking into the future,” Byram said. “All the guys and coaches have started reaching out to players in high school and started recruiting to build the team.”
Byram currently leads the team in assists.
The Bulldogs have had a rocky start to their first season back. After a loss to University of Kentucky on the road, the Bulldogs fired back strong with a 13-3 win over IUPUI on October 24. The trio of Casey, Brayton, and senior Connor Mahon netted a total of 8 goals in the rout.
This past weekend, the Bulldogs played a two game series against Washtenaw Community College of Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Bulldogs won both games by a combined 16 goals, while only allowing 1 goal to the opposition. After 6 games the Bulldogs find themselves sitting at 3-3-0, and ranked in the top 20 teams in their division.
After the holiday break the Bulldogs return to the ice to play Indiana University at home on January 21. All Butler club hockey home games will be played at Pop Weaver Youth Pavilion on 38th Street.