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Stanley Cup Comes to Naval Academy

Posted on: April 24, 2014 08:00 EDT by MC2 Jonathan L. Correa

The Naval Academy hockey coach Mike Fox surprised the men’s hockey team when he teamed up with the National Hockey League and others to bring the Stanley Cup to the Naval Academy arena April 22.

The Stanley Cup is the oldest and most recognized trophy in professional sports.

Crafted in Sheffield, England, in the late 1800s, it was first presented in 1893. It is the only trophy in professional sports that is passed along from player to player in the summer their team wins it.

This year’s hockey team finished the season at 29-7-2 and ranked 8th nationally, making them the  most successful hockey team in Naval Academy history.

“The efforts at practice were more consistent and up tempo which lead to better production on the ice,” said Fox. “They practice at a pace and tempo similar to how they should be playing a game, and we had players challenging players for positions.”

Bob Disogria, Navy veteran and current avid Navy Hockey fan, was instrumental in getting the cup here.

“He had been working on trying to get Navy Hockey selected during the previous season but the NHL Strike ended the conversations,” stated Fox. “Bob reached out to them again this year in an effort to have them look at what a fine year the team had been having. The NHL had reviewed it among several other presentations and chose the USNA Men's Hockey team.”

The members were excited to have the Stanley Cup for the day.

“It was pretty surreal,” said Midshipman 1st Class Aaron D. Fleming, defense player. “I never thought I would see the real Stanley Cup. It is amazing to have the real one here.”

Fox believes their successful season was the result of everyone's concerted effort to work together as a team.

“The individualism that can infect a team was minimal this year,” stated Fox.  “The team policed, and the coaches stayed focused.

Fox contributes that philosophy to their success and it allowed them to have the most successful year in the history of the Men's Hockey program.

The team finished first in their division and made it to the quarterfinals of the American Collegiate Hockey Association National tournament. Two of their players, forward Tom Krysil and goalie Andrew Mills were selected to play in the ACHA All-Star game.

“These Midshipmen are proud of USNA and very proud of the USNA Men's hockey program. They have been having great success over the last few years by working hard and sticking to the program,” said Fox. “The team does not look for any recognition, but all of us who have played sports know that when it does happen, it gives a team and program that extra pride to step it up for the fans. It was long over do for them.” 

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