Two players from Keene State College have been selected to go to Russia and represent the Owls and Team USA. The American Collegiate Hockey Association (ACHA) will be bringing together teams from Russia, Europe, Asia and the USA to participate in the Student Hockey Challenge in Barnaul, Russia, October 1 through 6.
Keene State seniors Kyle Carignan and Carlin Testa will be hitting the rinks in Russia. Head coach Fred Carpenito has been selected to coach the Men’s Division Two team alongside assistant coaches Tyler Kangas, and Sean Levin.
Testa said that for him, it’s an honor to represent his school and his country, but it also comes with a humbling feeling. “There’s a lot of goalies out of there that we play against that really could’ve been there, so to have the opportunity to represent the school and the country is a big honor, I don’t take it lightly.” Testa is all business heading into Barnaul, mentioning he’s not going to Russia for personal stats, and self-glory. Testa said, “I just really want some wins while we’re out there, make it worthwhile, and hopefully come home with something.” He noted that this is also an opportunity for personal growth. “It will be good preparation for our season, the level of skill out there will definitely be better than a lot of the teams we’re playing.” Testa anticipates a very high level of play, and bigger opponents. “A bunch of our coaches and administrative people were in Russia last year, and they said the hockey players out there can really shoot the puck.”
Testa isn’t going to let that get to him, though, and he isn’t looking to change anything up. “I just prepare the same way every time that I’m on the ice, try to keep everything consistent, and keep everything pretty simple,” Testa said.
Colin Enos, a first-year at Keene State, said that Carignan and Testa motivate the freshman who are now trying out for the team. Enos said, “The fact that two players from a team we’re trying out for are going to a national tournament, playing the sport that they love, motivates me to put in as much time on the ice as possible, and make the team.”
Carignan is still trying to take it all in. “It’s pretty crazy to think about it because there’s around 12,000 kids that play club hockey,” Carignan said. He said that this opportunity wasn’t handed to them, it took lots of hours on the rink and in the gym, “This is pretty special, definitely a lot of hard work, but now I’m just going to enjoy it and take it all in.” Carignan is looking to contribute to the team any way he can and is willing to step up for whatever coach Carpenito is looking for. He said, “I’m hoping to fit in whatever role they put me in.” Carignan is an all-around player, and his new team will soon find that out. “If they want me to try to put the puck in the net, that’s what I’ll try to do, but if they want me to grind it out in the corners, that’s what I’ll do.” It is evident Carignan wants to try to help his team any way he can, which is a quality you don’t find in many players.
Jack Dey can be contacted