Trevor Large: Proud of Griff Hockey and ready for Minnesota- Read more on Griff Hockey

For Canisius Hockey Coach Trevor Large, he gets to continue an informal recent tradition of Atlantic Hockey. It’s conference tournament champion for the past four seasons that its been played has been lead by a former assistant of Army Hockey Head Coach Brian Riley. Large had this to say of his time with the Rileys “ I have a lot of pride and am really proud to spend as much time as I did with Brian Riley. They’re good friends of mine.” Like Riley Large values off ice relationship building and the type of person in his program for who they are and not just what shows on a box score.

If you haven’t seen “Griff Hockey” Large sums it up well saying , “ We are a physical team we have good structure, and have a high compete level. As individuals they’re not the same, we are not robotic.” Large loves to build varied teams with different ways to play depending on the situation. Part of the reason Canisus is representing Atlantic Hockey is because of how they were able to win games this year, every which way. They defeated a resurgent Army group in the first round in three games before knocking off a very strong Niagara side in three games. Then they played shut down defense to beat a Holy Cross group that did not quit and that ended the tournament run of AIC.

On the value of playing in Atlantic Hockey and representing the conference Large said “ Atlanic Hockey has always done that, we’ve always done that for year’s. There’s been multiple times in the past ten years where the team in our position has won an NCAA Tournament game. That’s a feather in the cap for our conference. Its very true that we’ve earned our way here.”

Large also knows that the rankings mean nothing at puck drop and is ready to see his team take on Minnesota. He said, “the results of the game are determined by the teams on the ice.”

On two of his leaders, goalie Jacob Barczewski and Keaton Mastrodonato Large said “Jacob’s stability is in the way he’s played ( which) has always been there. His focus and commitment to his craft has always been there. Every player on our roster wants to play for him.”

On Mastrodonato he said “ I think hes learned how to drive our team north. He absolutely drives our team north on and off the ice. He’s an abnormal competitor. ( in a good way) he always wants to demolish an opponent. Our guys love him for it. Maybe some programs think he’s too hard.”

Large wanted to highlight some depth players on his team. He believes that the penalty kill line lead by Steffano Bottini featuring others like Markus Boguslovsky and Eric Urbank has been “off the charts.”

Large also spoke highly of the Nick Bowman line for providing depth scoring. He said “you can list them wherever you want on the lineup. That line is a really tough matchup, because of the way Bowman and DeGrande can shoot the puck.” He then added more about his defense pairs, saying that David Meleragni is the driving force who has been leading the way back there. He has been playing his best hockey the last two months. He praised all his defenders for how well they block shots. Large said “They commit, they give everything they have, they know if its there time for a block they laugh it off(after the block).”

Largest did note that his staff will use the timeout difference to their best to matchup with the Gophers the best they can. As he said “We are trying to use everything as an advantage, it does enable you to recover, it enables.. depending on the scenario. Us to be the right players out depending on the situation.”

For the scratched players, Large notes that Canisius brought everyone on this trip and that they are a big part of today as well. He said, “We are absolutely going through it together, we need their energy and support. We need everybody to get bring exactly who they are.”

Finally on playing in front of many Fighting Hawks fans disappointed to not see their team playing in Fargo, Large said, “We know that they may not be cheating for us but they will be cheering against our opponent, we may have to teach them lets go Griffs but once we do that I’m sure they’ll be yelling it loud and proud.”

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