Roller hockey team continues to win
By Hector Trujillo
The Scripps Ranch High School roller hockey team is looking to continue its dominance after last season was cancelled due to the ongoing pandemic.
This season’s squad has a balance of upper class players alongside very talented ninth and tenth graders, with their games and practices held at Kit Carson Park in Escondido.
“I think (it’s) more creative, more space to skate, which leads to a wide open, exciting game,” said head coach Greg Friedman.
Among the standout players this season are junior defenseman Emile Thieault, freshman forwards Garion Barber and Isaiah Yates, along with junior forward Ryan Mauro.
“It’s a co-ed sport and all the teams in the league have girls playing,” Friedman said.
The Scripps Ranch team currently has two female players: senior goalie Tori Fraser who has been on two CIF winning teams, and forward Gabi Downing.
The two-time defending champion Falcons have won the past two championships, going 41-1 over that time, including scoring 18-0 in 2019 on the way to winning the CIF-Metro Conference roller hockey Kiwanis/Don Cerone Memorial Cup – defeating the second-seeded Rancho Bernardo Broncos.
“It is the only sanctioned CIF hockey league in California,” Friedman explained.
The league is divided into Metro North and South divisions, with the top 12 advancing to the playoffs in March.
Many alumni are now playing at the collegiate level.
Perhaps the most notable former Falcon is Chad Ruhwedle, who played defenseman for the Pittsburg Penguins of the NHL, helping lead the team to the Stanley Cup in 2017.
The skating Falcons have been on an impressive run after losing the season opener to Westview High School by a score of 3-1, avenging that loss in blowout fashion 10-1 the very next game.
Since the first match this season, the Falcons have been back to their usual dominant form. Examples include victories over Poway High School by a score of 14-0, an 18-1 win against Escondido Charter, and an 11-1 victory against Patrick Henry High School.
The Falcons are scheduled to face Poway High on Monday, Jan. 31 with an 8 p.m. face-off at the Escondido Sports Center.