Charlotte Rush: Nationals is just the next step-Read More

Photo Credit: Charlotte Rush

For the Charlotte Rush, they had to work to get back to the expectation of this organization, going to the National Championship at both levels this past weekend. The Elite Group did so in two games while the Premier team was challenged by their rival and adjusted in game three to earn their spot. The schedule will come today and both teams will get a sense of what their road to trophies will look like. Here are some thoughts from Head Coach Troy Schwab on the success of both groups in the playoffs and what is to come.

“It was a great weekend all around. Pineville Ice House and the staff at the Pineville Ice House did an exceptional job helping us host the playoffs this year. There was great attendance throughout the three days and everything ran very smooth with great reviews.

Extremely proud of how the Elite team played this past weekend. Going into the series as the under dog, playing a very good, very well coached Potomac Patriots team and being able to get a sweep was not an easy task. 

As a team we played really well and did things winning teams needed to do. Block shots, pucks in deep, defend hard.  All the hockey cliches you can think of but things this group of players did over a 2 game span. 

Devin DeCarlo played very well for us in net. We knew he had experience in the playoffs and were hoping that would help him and us and it proved to be the case. SantaMaria scored a huge goal in game 2 for us. I need to compliment Our group of 7 Defenceman. Potomac has a very good forward group and I thought that they defended them very hard and limited them all series long. Multiple players stepped up and made this a very good weekend for the Elite team. 

The way the schedule set up to finish the season playing the Canes 3 times and then matching up in the first round we knew it was going to be a hard fought series. Need to give the Canes a lot of credit. They kept adjusting their game plan throughout the 6 games. Throwing different looks at us and made this is a very tough series. We are a better team today because of the way we had to adapt and play against the Canes over the last month. 

 The series was very tight and very back and forth over the weekend. We knew going into game 3 we needed to get back to playing fast in all 3 zones and we defiantly did that. Being able to get a lead early helped us and allowed us to relax.  I thought game 3 was the best team game we have played all season. We had guys step up in big time ways throughout our lineup. Matt Kreczman is a player who maybe didn’t get enough opportunity throughout the season and is now stepping up, playing well, and got us started early. Rhett Evjen and Bryce Battaglia did what we expect them to do and that’s score goals. We defended hard, got goaltending, and stayed fairly disciplined. 

Since my first day as a coach with the Rush, Ryan has always talked with our teams about leaving the place better then you found it and putting the players that come after you in position to be successful. One of those ways is winning home ice to host the playoffs on our home rink. You could see the benefit of that this weekend. Being able to sleep in your own bed, use your own locker room, play in front of your families, your billet families, your friends, your fans, and your elite/premier players  was an extra factor that we needed and helped this past weekend. We are very thankful for the people that showed up this weekend to support us and it defiantly played a factor in us winning. 

Excited to be heading to Utica for Nationals. It was and will always be the expectation for the Charlotte to go to Nationals but it is not our end goal.”

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