Miners playing impressive hockey in inaugural RMJHL season
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The easy part is in the past for the Pikes Peak Miners team in the Rocky Mountain Junior Hockey League (RMJHL).
Off to an extremely fast start in the first season of the six-team league, the Miners now must continue the momentum each weekend they take the ice.
“Moving forward, we just can’t let our foot off the gas,” said Miners coach Nick Harper. “We need to remind ourselves every single day why we are here and work to find that mental consistency to do things you don’t want to do day in and day out to continue to get better.”
Pikes Peak general manager Greg Vanover has been impressed not only with the Miners roster, but with Harper as well.
“I’m happy with how our players are handling themselves and showing up every day to continue to work and develop,” said Vanover. “Nick is doing an excellent job with our team and works very hard to continue to find opportunities for these guys at the next levels of play.”
Earlier this season, forward Jake Eubank took advantage of a chance to skate with the Janesville Jets and Coulee Region Chill of the North American Hockey League (NAHL). Harper feels Eubank is just the tip of the iceberg.
“I know we will have a few more guys get an opportunity at the NAHL level,” said Harper. “Our team is fully founded on development and advancement and we push every day on and off the ice for this.”
Sitting at or near the top of the RMJHL standings for the majority of the 2015-16 season, Harper said it’s a testament to his players as there have been no easy games thus far.
“I have been very impressed with the competition in the RMJHL,” beamed Harper. “We have teams that could go toe-to-toe with most Tier III teams in the country and every team in our league is good enough to beat us if we do not show up with our best. Ultimately, leadership is the most important factor on a team and our leadership has led to our success this season.”
— Matt Mackinder