USA Hockey Magazine

October 2014

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Page 35 of 52

I f you were chronicling the best hockey towns in the country, Tempe, Ariz., would probably not sit at the top of anyone's list. But take a trip to Oceanside Ice Arena, located two miles from a university known more for its pool parties than its puck prowess, and you'll find hockey thriving in the heart of the Sonoran Desert. Welcome to Arizona State University. The football team was ranked as high as 11th in the BCS rankings and the baseball team is the school's pride with five national championships. Yet, the most dominant team on campus just may be found on ice. The ASU Sun Devils may be the best college hockey team no one has heard of, as evidenced by its national championship last season. ASU plays in the American Collegiate Hockey Association, the top league for non-varsity college hockey in the country and a step below the NCAA. Its national title run wasn't covered on ESPN, and the team didn't have to survive the Frozen Four to get there. But don't sleep on the Sun Devils. Since current head coach Greg Powers took over at the start of the 2010-11 season, the team is 129-23-8, which includes a 6-3 postseason record and a 38-2 record in its championship run last year. In 2012, ASU took a huge step forward when it toppled Penn State, 3-1, on the Nittany Lions home ice, marking the first time the team beat a Div. I program. They have even caught the eye of the school's athletic director Ray Anderson, who recently said he would love to see ASU hockey become a varsity program. Schools in the ACHA can't offer schol- arships, but that hasn't stopped Powers from recruiting some of the top players in the nation, including many from right there in Arizona. 34 Fresh Off Their First ACHA Title, The ASU Sun Devils Are Poised To Stay On Top "YOU HAVE TO PROVE THAT YOU CAN BE HERE, AND MOST IMPORTANTLY YOU HAVE TO PROVE THAT YOU WANT TO BE HERE. YOU CAN'T JUST SETTLE ON ASU." — DREW NEWMEYER, SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ., NATIVE WHO PLAYS FOR THE ACHA NATIONAL CHAMPION ARIZONA STATE SUN DEVILS By JUSTIN EMERSON PHOTOS COURTESY OF Linda Prince OCTOBER. 2014 USAHOCKEYMAGAZINE.COM D Y NA S T Y I N T H E DESERT

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