A season after the team came up just short of another Clark Cup championship, the Chicago Steel just keep reeling off wins as they look to finish what they started last year.
The Steel, owners of the Eastern Conference’s best record at 25-4-1, are off to the second-best start in United States Hockey League history, and the team has reeled off 11 straight wins since their last defeat on Nov. 29.
“We start off just looking to play the right way, and when you do that, everything falls into place,” defenseman Luke Reid said.
The Steel roster is loaded with talented players, six of whom were listed on the NHL Central Scouting list of the top North American skaters heading into the 2020 NHL Draft. Forwards Brendan Brisson and Sam Colangelo are the 31st and 33rd ranked skaters, respectively, and forward Sean Farrell was ranked 53rd in the list, which came out this week.
“We are certainly appreciative any time one of our players is recognized, and we are especially proud when the sheer number of players recognized is so significant,” Steel G.M. Ryan Hardy said in a statement.
That talent has been on full display even as the team has had to deal with some serious changes this season. Former head coach Greg Moore left the team earlier this season when he signed on as head coach of the AHL’s Toronto Marlies, but since then new head coach Brock Sheahan’s team has not lost a single game.
“This is a fantastic league from top to bottom, so these guys amaze us on a nightly basis,” Steel President Dan Lehv said.
The big motivating factor for the club: revenge, as the team is looking to go back and win the Clark Cup after losing out on the prized trophy last season.
“We were all crying and our heads were down watching them celebrate, but it lit a fire inside of us,” forward Mathieu De St. Phalle said.
The Steel will be back in action on Friday night, when they play the first of two straight home games against the Omaha Lancers at the Fox Valley Ice Arena.