IceCats fall to Utah State, gear up for New Mexico

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    By Matthew Hargreaves

    The IceCats Web site said the team bus left at 3:30 p.m. Thursday for their game in Logan. Unfortunately, it seems they forgot to take their recent intensity with them.

    “It was really frustrating. We are a far better team than we showed tonight,” assistant coach Ed Gantt. “We didn”t play our physical fore-checking game tonight.”

    Despite their recent success, the IceCats were not able to match the team speed and physical play of Utah State, as they lost 8-2 in Logan.

    Provo got in a tough spot right off the start, falling behind 4-0 in the first period.

    “They worked harder than we did all the way around,” Gantt said. “Many of our players are coming home really sore, but I don”t think any of their players are.”

    Despite the tough times, there were several bright spots, as several IceCats played hard throughout the game.

    “I wanted to give those players who don”t play much a chance to really work,” Gantt said. “Miguel Lopez, Jesse Thorpe, and Jesse Ross really played well.”

    Dan Harker was another player who stepped up his game scoring both goals for Provo.

    “Dan just hustled all night,” Gantt said. “He was everywhere.”

    Fatigue may have played a role in the poor showing tonight, as the IceCats have played their fourth game in eight days, including the many miles accumulated in their trip to California.

    “We”re pretty tired,” Harker said. “I”m sick now, but that”s no excuse for how we played.”

    The team won”t get much rest anytime soon as it plays two games against the University of New Mexico tonight and Saturday at The Peaks Arena.

    “We”re looking forward to playing New Mexico. We swept them last year,” coach Gantt said. “But looking back on how we played tonight, we can”t take anything for granted.”

    The team will also be motivated to play well as it will be playing in front of a larger crowd than normal.

    Friday”s game will be webcast live at newsnet.byu.edu at 7:45 p.m. The game can be accessed by clicking the link on the NewsNet homepage.

    Even with the extra fans watching, players won”t need more motivation than to look at tonight”s performance.

    According to Harker, “We”ve got something to prove to ourselves.”

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