A local hockey rivalry will get underway this November when the men’s teams from Wilkes and King’s meet for the first time.
Wilkes University unveiled its inaugural schedule for the 2018-19 season on Monday, and the Colonels will debut on the road at SUNY Canton in a non-conference matchup in Canton, N.Y. on Oct. 26. The game will be part a 25-game regular-season schedule, which includes 18 games in the United Collegiate Hockey Conference (UCHC).
The Colonels will make their home debut November 9 when they host Stevenson University at 7:15 p.m. on its home ice facility – the Toyota Sportsplex. They will face King’s twice — Nov. 16 and Jan. 31, 2019.
“The schedule is very tough from top to bottom,” said Wilkes head coach Brett Riley. “We have a great test against SUNY Canton in October to open the season before we waste little time jumping into UCHC play where we will see high-level teams on a nightly basis”
The UCHC consists of King’s College, Chatham University (PA), Elmira College (NY), Lebanon Valley College (PA), Manhattanville College (NY), Nazareth College (NY), Neumann University (PA), Stevenson University (MD), and Utica College (NY).
Wilkes will also play eight games in the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC). The MAC has served as Wilkes’ primary conference since 1947 and the Colonels will be joined in the UCHC by fellow MAC members King’s, Lebanon Valley, Manhattanville and Stevenson. The MAC will not host a league tournament but the winner will be decided by best won-loss record with a tie-breaking criteria in the events multiple teams finish with the same record. Stevenson captured the league title last season finishing 5-0-1.
Wilkes will also play seven non-conference games. Along with SUNY Canton (twice), Wilkes will play Hamilton College (NY), Bryn Athyn (twice), Post University (CT) and Anna Marie College.
Riley, who took the reins of the program in May 2017, has spent the past year recruiting a full class of first-year and transfer student-athletes to compete in the Colonels inaugural 2018-19 season.
Reach Tom Venesky at 570-991-6395 or on Twitter @TomVenesky