Sparked by Coffey’s Return from Injury, PDS Boys’ Hockey Produces 3-0 Start
HOT COFFEY: Princeton Day School boys’ hockey player Tyler Coffey goes after the puck in recent action. Last Wednesday, sophomore forward Coffey scored two goals to help PDS top Montclair Kimberley Academy 4-0. Last Monday, he chipped in a goal and an assist as the Panthers edged Hun 3-2 to improve to 3-0. PDS will take part in the Albany Academy (N.Y.) Tourney from December 11-13. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)
For Tyler Coffey, his freshman season with the Princeton Day School boys’ hockey team last winter turned into a bit of a nightmare.
After playing in just three games, Coffey hurt his shoulder and was sidelined for the rest of the campaign.
“It was horrendous,” said Coffey, reflecting on the lost season which saw PDS struggle to a 3-15-1 record. “It was tough to watch, especially the Lawrenceville game (a 6-0 loss on January 15). A huge crowd is there and you don’t want to be in it, you want to be on the ice.”
Fueled by that frustration, Coffey worked hard in the interim in order make an impact on the ice this winter for the Panthers.
“I got back on the ice in about five or six weeks after the injury and got back for nationals with my club team,” said Coffey.
“I was in the gym a lot this summer trying to get stronger, faster, and bigger, and always improving on my skills.”
Not wasting time to display those skills, Coffey tallied two goals and an assist in a season-opening 9-1 win over St. Joe’s Prep (Pa.) on December 1. Last Wednesday against visiting Montclair Kimberley Academy (MKA), he scored two first period goals to help spark the Panthers to a 4-0 triumph.
In the win over MKA, Coffey and the Panthers were looking to seize control of the game from the outset.
“We came out strong today right off the first or second shift,” said Coffey who got his first goal just 2:49 into the contest.
“I went in and one of their guys threw the puck up the center of the ice and I just grabbed it. I kicked it out and the goalie popped it out and it went to me in the front. I went around the goalie and it went in. It really sets the tone, it really gets the team fired up. We got the momentum right there.”
Coffey kept the momentum going as he got a little luck on his second goal, which came just 3:19 later.
“On that one, I was just carrying it around to the net, it hit off a stick and went through a hole,” said a smiling Coffey.
Being on the same line with senior captain Connor Fletcher should help keep Coffey producing around the net.
“We were together last year and against St. Augustine, we lit it up as a line,” said Coffey, who chipped in a goal and an assist last Monday as the Panthers edged Hun 3-2 to improve to 3-0.
“We also lit it up against St Joe’s even though we didn’t win that game. It was good, I love playing with him.”
In Coffey’s view, PDS is coming together well as it looks to bounce back from its 2014-15 rough season.
“It is a great, it is a good feeling,” said Coffey, reflecting on the team’s hot start.