The Middle Tennessee Ice Hockey club is proud to announce that it will be joining the Southeastern Collegiate Hockey Conference (SECHC) for the 2019-20 season. About to begin its 11th season, this is the SECHC’s first expansion since 2010.
“I’m extremely excited about the growth of our league,” explains newly appointed SECHC commissioner Justin Bradford. “By adding more teams in the southeast, we are establish[ing] our footprint for years to come. The SECHC is adding competitive teams in multiple states, and that will only reinforce our place as the most elite college hockey conference in the ACHA.”
“This is a huge opportunity for MTSU Hockey,” says MTSU Hockey Head Coach Jasen Riherd. MTSU has been independent since their inaugural 2015-2016 season in the American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA). “The team is excited by this change and looking forward to the opportunities it will bring to play in tournaments and nationals.”
Along with MTSU, this expansion welcomed the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Florida State University, Clemson University and Kennesaw State University to the SECHC. For the 2019-20 season, the Blue Raiders will play six other contenders in the SECHC to earn their division standing.
For Coach Riherd, the move means continued growth of a program he’s been with since the beginning, along with the ability to maintain the team’s sense of tradition. “We are looking forward to continuing our rivalries with the University of Tennessee and Auburn and creating new rivalries with Georgia Tech and University of Alabama Huntsville,” he says.
Riherd also is enthusiastic about what the change will mean for the future of hockey at MTSU. “It’s definitely great news as it will open numerous doors for recruiting and give our player and fans new rivalries to get passionate about.”
ABOUT MTSU HOCKEY:
MTSU Ice Hockey Club launched their inaugural year during the 2015-16 season as a member of the ACHA Division III. Since then, Head Coach Jasen Riherd has recruited student athletes who demonstrate both a talent for the game and a passion for teamwork. All MTSU players are full-time students at the university. MTSU returns for its 2018-19 season opener against Vanderbilt University on Sept. 21 at Ford Ice Center.