By Nick Hartman:
(Kansas City, MO): The Mavericks’ season can’t be summed up in only one word. You would need at least ten words to sum up the heartbroken-tear jerkin’-amazingly awesome-frustratingly enjoyable-and-controversally the best in Mavericks history. The 2012-2013 Mavericks season ended in heartbreak after a game seven loss to the hated, Allen Americans. The Mavericks played their hearts out all season in front of the best fans, who were there from the start and never stopped shouting until the season came to an end.
“The fans truly are the best,” said Mavericks head coach, Scott Hillman. “We go out there day-in-and-day-out and they are always cheering us on. They’re with us through the heartbreak and they’re with us through the triumph…”
The Mavericks were ready from the start of the season even with a revamped squad that only had seven returning players. The team worked well together throughout the season even though the squad was constantly changing. By the end of the season, the Mavericks had a 35-25-6 record sustaining a playoff spot. The Mavericks lost the first two games against the Rapid City Rush but cruised on through winning the next four, advancing to the semifinals. The semifinals brought the ultimate roller-coaster ride to fans and players alike. The Mavericks won the first game, lost the second, third and fourth, and then won the fifth in dramatic fashion beating Allen 3-2 with a late goal scored by Andrew Courtney and a winning-goal scored by Courts as well. The Mavericks won the sixth game in style and forced a game seven. Game seven was life or death for the Mavericks and fans. We all wanted the Mavericks to win so we could have a longer season but sadly they were unable to find the victory.
“When we don’t win that last game of the year, there is always some regrets and frustration,” said Mavericks head coach Scott Hillman. “As we look back on our four years, there has been no team that’s faced the adversity that these guys have. A huge number of men lost due to injury and this group kept finding a way to persevere and really thought they raised their game. It was just a great season and great playoff run.”
Looking back, there were tons of great highlights by the Mavericks (too many to talk about), including some great goals, fights and team chemistry. The one that comes to the minds of many is the game five Andrew Courtney goal, with 30 seconds remaining, that saved the Mavericks season. Other highlights include the seven-game win streak from December 1st to December 15th, as well as the shootout victories against the Denver Cutthroats, January 5th, and the Wichita
Thunder, February 23, beating the Tulsa Oilers 5-1 in the final regular season game, March 22nd, and winning games three, four and five at home against the Rapid City Rush.
“This season was a lot different from last year,” said Mavericks captain, Sebastien Thinel. “A few more guys coming in and I think we had an older team too. Lots of leaders and they made my job really easy. We had a great group of guys and they were good every day.”
The hit highlight reel consisted of Colt King and Dave Pszenczny knocking two Quad City Mallards players on their butts, and Jesse Perrin leaving Ian Lowe on the ice after a huge lick, Riley Emmerson leveling anyone in his path and many more.
The fight highlight reel showcased Riley Emmerson beating the living daylights out of Kip Brennan from the Allen Americans, Colt King crushing Garrett Gruenke, Rapid City Rush, with a strong left hook, David Simoes knocking out Mitch McMolm and Gabriel Boutin-Gagnon from the Quad City Mallards and Brandon Smith eyeing in on and hitting Jean-Phillip Chabot, Denver Cutthroats, with some huge fists.
The Orange Army only has to wait 180 days, 21 hours and 59 minutes until opening face-off of the 2013-2014 season. We will truly miss the hits, goals and fights that came in the 2012-2013 season. The Mavericks’ faithful are ready for more hockey and ready to show Brampton and St.Charles and the other nine Central Hockey Teams how they cheer on the best team in the CHL.