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Win for Waldorf–Win for Love

Travis Park and Haley Rubin share the excitement of their engagement. Photo by Dylan Thomas

By: Shannon Clark

Hockey fans, coaches, teammates and lovers experienced pride at the game on Saturday, Oct. 28 with a 5-4 shut out.

To some Waldorf University students, Saturday’s game was considered the best game thus far. “In terms of energy from the team and the players, that was the best game I’ve attended since I became a Warrior,” Cassidy Warson said.

The Warriors started the game strong when Anthony Chavez scored within the first 30 seconds. Soon after, Kaden Hintz scored another energy-enhancing goal.

“A moment that stood out for me was Chavez’s goal right out of the gate,” Warson said, “It built momentum and set the tone for the rest of the game.”

Warson was pleased to see the stands full. “It was nice to see a big crowd cheering on the team,” Warson said.

Currently, several players are unable to skate due to injuries or disciplinary reasons. With a lack of players, endurance and determination are crucial. However, the team is looking to add skaters in the spring semester.

Assistant Coach Steve Smith was proud of the effort from the players. “We were low on numbers, so I’m very pleased with the boys’ continual effort,” Smith said.

A new system was recently put in place for the 12 skaters. “Not only did the skaters play well, but they executed our new system with enthusiasm and accuracy,” Smith said.

The coaches are also focusing on cutting penalties. Though the Warriors had a few penalties, the team is making progress. “We still need to cut penalties, but they appeared to be dwindling at Saturday’s game,” Smith said.

Smith was especially pleased with goalie, Jeffrey Veitch. “Veitch had an excellent weekend, along with the rest of the boys,” Smith said.

Waldorf University’s opponent, Lindenwood-Belleville, has predominantly been a tenacious team with talented skaters. “This was our first time beating this team, so it was a nice win for Waldorf University hockey,” Smith said.

While fans were delighted with the game, some individuals were more focused on the exciting finish. After the Warrior win, hockey player Travis Park proposed to Waldorf graduate Haley Rubin.

“I had some jitters, but I was pretty focused on the game,” Park said.

Park’s teammates and coaches extended encouragement and support during the big moment. “Jeff [Bartel] was the biggest aid, but everyone on the team was really helpful,” Park said.

The ice is not only significant for Park, but the couple’s relationship sparked on the rink. “The first time Haley and I really hung out, we went to one of my hockey games, and she came and watched,” Park said. “I figured we started it there; why not finish it there?”

After dropping to his knee, everything but Haley came to a halt. “My adrenaline was going so much, I was just focused really on Haley’s smile,” Park said.

Post-proposal, Park slowly realized his surroundings and thanked those around him. “I’d like to thank Reed [Loucks] and everyone for taking pictures, so I can look back on the special moment.”

Regardless of the excitement for his engagement, Park expressed enthusiasm for the Warrior’s win. “I’m really happy that we won the game,” Park said, “we finally beat them for the first time ever!”

The game against Lindenwood-Belleville was a climatic win for the Warriors, but the real winners were Park and Rubin.