Keystone Oaks School District News Article

Same Patterns as Last Year?

The Pittsburgh Penguins were off to a remarkable start, kicking off the season with a 7-5-0 record and winning five games in a row, despite missing some of their core forwards due to many lingering injuries, now repeating how it was last year.

The Penguins were off to an amazing start without one part of their two-headed monster. They went on a winning streak and are showing their fans that despite losing big offensive players to the team, they will still present them with an enjoyable game. Now that they have lost three in a row, they are repeating the back and forth pattern they had last year with a record of 6-5-0. Fans, like Marlana Howard, believe they will have a good season. 

“They are going to do very well this season and they will persevere through this hardship of no offense.”

Without having Evgeni Malkin healthy and on the ice, the Penguins are starting off with an average season. The offense is a minor detriment to their team, as they have shown time and time again that their offense compensates for the holes that make up the Pittsburgh Penguins. Avid Penguins fan, Theresa Sarsfield, believes the Penguins will adjust to the setback.

“It will be a rough adjustment, but we will get through it, we have capable players to step up into the position.”

Sidney Crosby has been the Penguins captain since 2007 and has proved to the Penguins’ fans that he is here to stay and will always play his hardest. Last season, he experienced a 100-point season and led his team to the 2018-19 playoffs, even though they fell short in the first round. He is a main contributor to the team and proves that he is worthy of his position. Sophomore, Kyle Le, is looking hopeful that Crosby can pull through with another 100-point season. 

“I’m not sure, he is a very talented hockey player, he has put up amazing seasons like that before, but he has a whole season ahead of him to see if he will be able to get another season like last year.”

Matt Murray has been the starting goalie for the Penguins for the past two years, since they chose to keep him over Fleury. He has been playing pretty well, other than the shaky start in net against the Buffalo Sabres and the Florida Panthers the other day. Murray has been putting up a good front and not letting many goals in. Sarsfield has mixed feelings on the goalie.

“He is going to have his on and off days, and I’m not sure that he will live up to his full potential.”

The defense is one of the three major aspects of hockey. Already, the team has been messing up on the defensive side, including Letang who makes some blunders during bad games. The defense can create a stronghold on protecting the goalie as long as they put in the extra step. Junior, Kira Roberto, thinks they can pull it together. 

“The defense needs to come together and work hard in order for them to have a good season.”

During the 2014-15 season, Mike Johnston was instituted as head coach for the season, and ended up going to playoffs, resulting in a first round exit. The next year Jim Rutherford, Pittsburgh Penguins general manager, fired him halfway through the season and hired head coach Mike Sullivan. He has since won two cups with the Penguins and has been coaching the men to the playoffs each year. Sullivan is a good coach who needs to mix things up, find chemistry, and maintain consistency. Roberto has a different opinion.

“I believe Sullivan is stuck on bad habits and putting his favorites on the ice.”

Sarsfield has a different opinion.

“He has a lot of experience with the team. He adds what he knows into the players’ spectrum. I think that he is an overall good coach.”

The Penguins have a long way to go this season, with more than 70 more games to go, so for the rest of this season they need to become more consistent as this year continues.

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