Sound Bites: Interview with Cornell Men’s Hockey Coach Mike Schafer

By Tim Donnelly
ESPN Ithaca

Tim Donnelly

Recently on ESPN Ithaca’s Between the Lines, host Tim Donnelly spoke with Mike Schafer, the head coach of the Cornell Men’s Hockey Team. Schafer has led his squad to a 10-2 record with plenty of ECAC League games looming ahead on the schedule. Here is a snippet of that conversation; to hear the full interview, visit ESPN Ithaca’s on-demand PodCenter at ESPNIthaca.com.

Tim Donnelly: After 5 non-ECAC games, you are now going to take on Princeton, and then stay in the ECAC for the rest of the year. Does that change your outlook, your preparation at all knowing that these games may count a little bit more?
Mike Schafer: No, not at all. You know, the guys know these teams now. So you are not going in maybe not knowing how dangerous a guy is, or how talented a team is, you know exactly what you are going to get. We know that Princeton and Quinnipiac are good teams. That’s what makes our entire league so strong. So for us, we definitely are looking forward to that challenge of, having only played 6 league games, now the majority of our schedule is forthcoming.

TD: Coach, you brought up that you are now more familiar with the upcoming opponents on your schedule. On the flip side of that coin, they are now more familiar with you. A guy like Trevor Yates stands out on the stat sheet: 10 goals, 6 assists, 38 shots. How do you think opponents will deal with your team, when you have had guys that have had a lot of success, but now you are facing teams that have had success against you in the past?

MS: You know, we don’t change. Our strength of our team is our collective four lines and our depth on our team. That is what has been the strength of our team thus far, and we have always prided ourselves on that. Look at the weekend, Kyle Betts, who only had one goal up until then, and he gets three in the game… You know, now we got contributions from a lot of guys in the lineup. So, a guy like Trevor knows that he doesn’t have to shoulder the burden… He knows that everybody is going to be on board every night.

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Listen to Between the Lines with Tim Donnelly from 4-5 p.m. weekdays on ESPN Ithaca (1160 AM/107.1 FM) and ESPNIthaca.com.