Must-see Ooks games

September 12, 2017

Before the Ooks hockey team gets around to regular season business, some of them will suit up with MacEwan select players to take on the Edmonton Oilers rookies at Rogers Place on Wednesday, Sept. 13 at 7 p.m.

“This game will be a truly memorable experience for the NAIT Ooks,” said Dr. Glenn Feltham, president and CEO, NAIT. “I am thrilled we are able to partner with MacEwan University to showcase the calibre of men’s hockey at both institutions,” Feltham said. “I would also like to thank the Oilers for providing this amazing experience for student-athletes in our city.”

NAIT’s Athletics Director John Bower said the game presents “a tremendous opportunity for the NAIT Ooks to partner with our crosstown rivals from MacEwan University to showcase the calibre of ACAC men’s hockey.” “We thank the Oilers for offering our student-athletes this
exceptional experience.”

The NAIT Ooks finished first during the ACAC regular season in 2016-17, accumulating a record of 22-6-2 and also led the ACAC in goals (138). MacEwan finished in second place,
three points behind NAIT and led the ACAC in fewest goals allowed (69) while posting a 21-7-1 record.

“It’s an exciting opportunity for our program and our student-athletes, that will create exposure throughout the hockey community on our brand of hockey,” said NAIT Ooks head coach Tim Fragle. “We hope that this new partnership will become an annual event that the local hockey community can get behind and support.”

Tickets go on sale to the public Thursday, Aug. 24 at 10 a.m. at EdmontonOilers. com. All tickets are general admission and are priced at $20 each plus applicable fees.

The Oilers training camp opens on Sept. 14.

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Whatever sport you wish to watch this year, the Ooks’ squads will provide you with entertainment and must-see games. You might even be stuck in a position between these action-packed games and homework … well, here are the dates you don’t want to miss, so plan accordingly.

Some old and new faces will be donning the wing-spreading owl on their jersey this year, it’s always exciting to see what a new-look team is capable of, especially for the first game of the season. Both the men’s and women’s soccer teams will be facing off against Concordia Thunder on Sept. 23.

This is the first match against each team since Concordia bested NAIT in the ACAC Championship last fall for bronze. The women will look to throw more salt in the wound against Concordia Thunder as they beat the host ACAC championship series team last year in the semifinals, which led to a championship against GPRC Wolves in the finals. Let’s see if the woman can make this a back-to-back championship season!

Hopefully the summer break didn’t throw that out of the memory of our Ooks, as they look to start of the season how they ended it last year.

After losing in the ACAC Championship finals last year, the men’s hockey team look to redeem themselves, starting with the Augustana Vikings at home Oct. 7 and the women kick off against Grant MacEwan on Oct. 14.

The 2015-2016 season ended with a ACAC Championship for men’s hockey, but the 2016-2017 season ended in a championship finals loss in overtime against the Grant MacEwan Griffins. They face off at home in an exhibition game Sept. 16 before facing off during the regular season at home on Oct. 20 and Jan. 20. A win in the exhibition can carry on momentum for the upcoming season.

Men’s and women’s basketball starts Oct. 13 against Concordia. Seventh and eighth were the ranks of both the men’s and women’s volleyball teams in the ACAC last year. This year, that looks to change as they start off the season against the Thunder on Oct. 14.

Our men’s basketball team last season were at the position of defending champs, which was not intimidating enough as a loss in the ACAC quarter finals eventually brought us to the ACAC Consolation Finals with a win over the Lakeland Rustlers. The two teams face-off on Oct. 28, as the NAIT Ooks look to get back on top and defeating the Rustlers will help their cause.

The only chance you’ll get to see the badminton team play will be during the third leg of a tournament on Jan. 28.

The team will have home advantage during only the third leg of the tournament. The team is looking to garner wins that will make them back-to-back ACAC team champions.

Unfortunately, the curling team will not be at home this year. They start Fall Regionals in St. Paul at the St. Paul Curling Club on Nov. 24.

If this was a movie, we’d want to make our new director proud:

The NAIT Ook’s season starts soon and new NAIT Athletic Director John Bower is about to enjoy his new position as this year will be a promising one for Ook’s sports teams.

– Tre Lopushinsky