Coming off a strong campaign last season. Head Coach Scott Atkinson still believes there are more steps his team must take to raise their game to the top of the Canadian Interuniversity Sport. With the competition tightening up this season, he is really expecting his crew to step up to the challenge and excel.
"When you come into Calgary you're going to have to work hard, it'll be a tough game every night," says Atkinson, who looks for more consistent performances out of his squad this season. "We're looking for the team to step forward."
In order for the Dinos to do so this season, they will heed major contributions from returning veterans. To contend with perennial powerhouses such as the University of Alberta and University of Saskatchewan the team's high-skilled top end players such as Ken McKay, Trevor Sagstro, and Jordan Walker among others, will be expected to lead the team. Having a total of seven rookies on the roster this season, the strong all-around play and leadership of captain Sean Robertson will also be needed.
The team has added depth on defence for this season after playing most of the first half of last season using forwards to fill in on the point. The coaches are hoping for the new guys to step in and contribute right away and were pleased with the competition for roster spots during camp.
Another key toward the team's goal of winning it all this year will be consistency. Atkinson believes that discipline for the Dinos, not just on the ice but in all the preparations leading up to games, will be something they must focus on this year to be successful. He is expecting his team to be more diligent and come to the rink prepared to play hard each game.
"We want to win every game," states Atkinson. "They are on the schedule and you have to play them, so you may as well win." The coach expects to see high intensity hockey out of his troops this season. Strong defence will be important as always, but with the talent accumulated on the team, the potential for offensive explosions is also there.
With a few new faces and many returning veterans on the team, the Dinos are expecting big things this year.
The Dinos will open the season against Manitoba Oct. 11-12