SFA Inline Hockey Club skating its way to Nationals - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

SFA Inline Hockey Club skating its way to Nationals

By Whitney Grunder - bio | email

NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE)- The SFA Inline Hockey Club has been a competitor in the Southwest Collegiate Hockey League since 1995.This season, the club has gone 17, one and one, which is the best SFA has ever done. Saturday, the team heads to Austin for the playoffs, to battle Abilene Christian University, Louisiana Tech, and University of Texas Arlington. The winner of the three game match-up will be heading to Nationals in San Jose, California. SFA hopes their talent, drive and determination will take them all the way.

Ten young men, carry one dream, to win playoffs this Saturday and head to Nationals.

"It would just be really crazy to be able to get that far out on the other side of the country, to be able to see other schools that you just never had the chance to see or play against," said Junior Jonathan Garris.

They're fast, light on their feet, coordinated and passionate.

"The great thing about hockey is it's constantly going, it never stops. The speed is just blistering," said Garris.

"We're just, we're playing big this year," said team captain Michael Jones, Junior.

Without a constant place to play, the team can only practice once or twice a week. Since they are not NCAA sponsored, Campus Recreation has stepped in to cover more than 4,000 dollars worth of league fees. If the team wins the playoffs, they'll have to fundraise another 4,000 to cover travel and hotel expenses.

"It's very expensive to go to California, and you know we're, we're really pushing it, but we're trying to get anybody, any help we can," said Jones.

 "If they do fundraising we're going to kind of match their fundraising. If they get sponsorships, then they'll be able to use that as well," said Sport Club Graduate Assistant Vicki Schmidt.

For now, the focus is on winning the playoffs.

"You have to practice hand eye coordination, get around other players. You also need physical strength too, to be able to put into it," said Garris.

Players say anyone can join the team, and no tryouts are necessary.

These athletes are bringing everything they've got to the table, and they're not letting anyone skate in their way, as they aim straight for nationals.

If you want to help make this team's dream of heading to Nationals a reality, and would like to make a donation, small or large, contact Sport Clubs Office Manager Janice Casper at 936-468-1569.

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