Day And Knights: Blog #2

Bill Day

Bill Day

Dec. 2, 2011

Day And Knights: Blog #2

Senior forward Bill Day will take Army hockey fans inside the Black Knights throughout the 2011-12 season with his blog Day And Knights. Day has played both forward and defense during his tenure with the hockey program and will offer frequent updates throughout the season.

Being part of a hockey team, you get to spend a lot of time with each other. When we aren't in class or doing homework, we are usually at the rink or just hanging out with each other playing video games or watching television.

Road trips are another opportunity for the guys to spend time with each other and bond.  We have teams in our league like Niagara, Robert Morris, Canisius, and RIT, which means a lot of time spent on the bus and a lot of nights spent sleeping in hotels. Bus rides consist of a lot of movies and sleeping for most of the guys, with a touch of homework/studying for a select few.

Lucky for us, the buses that we take are still equipped with VHS players so we have the privilege of watching some classics from the `90s. For some reason my parents have still kept our collection of VHS in the basement back home so they were kind enough to bring up Armageddon and The Rock for us to watch on our road trip to RIT. Without a doubt two of the best movies ever made. That Jerry Bruckheimer is an absolute genius. The only thing we were missing was Con Air and we would have been golden. Most of the time the movie selection is usually decided by Tom Doran, which means that we have to suffer through whatever he feels like watching. I can always counting on watching The Firm at least once a year.  He even bought it on DVD this year just in case we have a bus without a VHS player.  Needless to say I wouldn't be disappointed if something would happen to the movie and it "mysteriously" disappeared.

The seating on the bus is a pretty important thing, especially for the seniors. Seniors get first choice of seats on the bus, but more importantly are able to get a row of seats to themselves while the younger guys are stuck doubling up. It can get extremely tough on guys who are smaller like me that are stuck sitting with someone like Cody Ikkala or Maurice Alvarez who can really encroach on your space. Every guy has their own routine on the bus. Guys like Ryan Leets and Cheyne Rocha who really carry the teams GPA can usually be found cracking their books open the moment we leave the rink. There might even be some truth to the rumor that Leets never goes anywhere without his TI 83 plus calculator.

Other guys like to keep to themselves, like Jack Barnes who rarely says a word. You can find his head buried in some book about the economy or listening to a book on tape on his IPod. I prefer to use the time to catch up on some sleep and watch a show or two on my computer. I have recently noticed that the show Spartacus has become very popular with Marcel Alvarez, Danny Colvin, Maurice Alvarez, and Josh Richards.

Road trips are also the time for pranks. Team meals are a good time for shoe checks, which after three years of hard work, I have been able to perfect the art of the shoe check.  I'm usually good for about one per meal.  One person who should immediately remove himself from the running should be John Clark.  Two straight weeks of failed shoe checks on me. One would think that being the shortest guy on the team he would be able to sneak around undetected but that has not been the case.

On a more serious note though, while most people were home celebrating Thanksgiving with their families, we were on the road headed to Pittsburgh getting ready to play Robert Morris in a two-game series. While it would have been nice to have a meal with my family, there wasn't a better group of guys that I would have rather be with than my Army Hockey Family.  Not only are we teammates but we have created a family atmosphere with all the players and staff that have come through the Army Hockey program. All the boys on the team are like brothers to me and there is nothing better than being able to sit down and have a meal with your 25 brothers.

I also want to thank all the families and friends that came out over the weekend to support the team.  Looking in the stands over the weekend, it was nice to see that we had taken over about half the Robert Morris stands. Having the support of all of them made me think about all the sacrifices that my family has made throughout my hockey career helping me further my goal of being a Division I athlete. I'm sure all of the guys would agree with me when I say that we couldn't have made it this far without the support of all of the family and friends along the way and we just wanted to thank them for all that they have done for us.

One final note. Thursday was branch night for the seniors as we found out which branch of the Army we would be serving in for the next five years (or seven for those going aviation).  The way that branching works, everyone is ranked in our class based on a combination of academics, athletics, and military rankings. Those with the higher class rank get first pick of what they want to do. We rank order all of our choices from 1-16 and let the computers do the rest as we just wait for the envelope that contains our fate. This year might be the widest variety of branches we have had represented.  I was lucky enough to get my first choice which was Signal.  Here are the branches for the guys.

Marcel Alvarez- Infantry
Jack Barnes- Field Artillery
Danny Colvin- Quartermaster
Mark Dube- Aviation
Mike Hull-Quartermaster
Bret Larson-Ordinance
Kyle Maggard- Engineers
Alex McRae- Quartermaster
Pat Ryan-Aviation
Bryant Skarda- Engineers

Congratulations to all the seniors on all their choices.

Get Big Low,

Billy Day #23

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