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Student-athlete profile on Evan Haney '14

Evan Haney '14 is a two-time team captain and was an assistant captain as a sophomore for the Hamilton College men's ice hockey team. Evan has 13 goals and 13 assists for 26 points in 69 career games at Hamilton. He leads the Continentals into a big weekend with NESCAC home games against nationally ranked No. 9 Williams College on Friday, Dec. 6, and Middlebury College on Saturday, Dec. 7.

Q. Can you please tell us a little bit about where you grew up?
A. I grew up in Quebec on a small farm in a town called Sainte-Marthe, which is about 45 minutes west of the city of Montreal. Growing up on a farm taught me a lot about developing consistent work habits. Everyone in my family helped with what needed to be done, and I gained a lot from those experiences.

Q. How did you get interested in playing ice hockey?
A. I think my dad put a hockey stick in my hands the day I was born. He never pushed me to like the sport, but he always encouraged me based on my interest. Before I started skating, I remember asking him to play street hockey with me every chance I could. I started skating at the age of 3 with my local minor hockey organization. I've loved the game ever since, and my parents have always been there to help me along the way. I can't thank them enough.

Q. Did you participate in any other sports competitively before college?
A. I played soccer in the summer when I was growing up. I played with a great group of friends and really enjoyed it. Although I always believed that hockey was my sport, soccer allowed me to compete in a team environment, which is something I always enjoy. As I got older, hockey became more of a year-round commitment, and I had to decide between the two.

I also played lacrosse during my last two years of high school. Our team needed players and they taught me to play defense. It was a great experience to learn a new sport.

Q. What factored into your decision to choose Hamilton College?
A. I first visited Hamilton during my junior year of high school. I remember walking down Martin's Way with my dad, and really liked the feeling I got from the campus as a whole. In high school, I got to know an alum who played hockey here about 10 years ago. He opened my eyes to Hamilton's academic reputation and the experience I could have here. I knew I wanted to go to a school where I could get a great education, contribute to the success of the hockey program and find ways to get involved in the community. At the time of my decision, it seemed as though Hamilton would offer all of that. As I head into my last semester, Hamilton has certainly exceeded my expectations, and I'm thankful to have the opportunity to be a student-athlete here.

Q. Your team hosts Williams and Middlebury this weekend for a pair of NESCAC games. Can you give fans a quick preview of what they should expect to see?
A. They should expect to see our team play two hard-fought games. I expect the games to be close, but if we stick to our game plan and play consistently, we will give ourselves a very good chance to pick up four points this weekend. Both Williams and Middlebury have good programs, and this weekend gives us a chance to assert ourselves as a top team in the league.

Q. What are some of the goals the team has set for this season?
A. We want to finish the season in the top four in the NESCAC so we can secure home ice for the postseason. By that time of the year we want to be playing our best hockey. The key for us will be to continue to improve and mesh as we go forward. We have a group of guys who have all bought in to what we are trying to accomplish, and I'm excited to be a part of it.

Q. In early January the team travels to SUNY Plattsburgh for a two-day tournament that features three teams that have been nationally ranked this season, including the hosts, who are currently No. 1 in Division III. What are you hoping to get out of that experience?
A. The Plattsburgh tournament will be a great way for us to start the New Year. We beat Oswego, who was ranked No. 1 in Division III at the time, in their tournament my freshman year. Playing Plattsburgh gives us another chance to get a big win like that. Playing against the top teams in the country will show us that we belong there and will give us some jump going back into league play. We will take it game by game and hopefully head back to Hamilton with two wins.

Q. You were an assistant team captain as a sophomore and a team captain the last two seasons. What makes someone an effective leader?
A. There's a lot that goes into being a good leader and there's always more to learn and improve upon. An effective leader is ultimately somebody who sets the right examples and displays the messages they convey and can be trusted by their teammates in all situations, especially in times of adversity.

Q. Do you have a favorite Hamilton men's ice hockey memory that can be shared?
A. I can think back to January of my freshman year when we beat Oswego. It was in their rink, in front of a big crowd and was a great feeling.

Q. Two-part question, Canada won the gold medal for men's ice hockey in Vancouver in 2010. What are the chances for a repeat in 2014, and how much of an advantage is it for Russia to host in February?
A. Team Canada has a really good chance of repeating in 2014. Of course, there will be other strong contenders -- namely the U.S. and Russia -- but I will be biased and say that Canada has the best chance of winning in 2014.

I don't know how much of an advantage Russia will have in hosting. Thinking back to the 1972 Summit Series between Canada and the Soviet Union, Canada won three of the four games they played in the Soviet Union. Although the atmosphere and tension will not be the same this time around, the Canadians and other countries will not have the distractions and pressure of playing in their home country.

Q. Do you have a favorite professor or a favorite class from your three-plus years here at Hamilton?
A. I've taken several great classes with professors that I've really enjoyed since I've been here, so it's hard to narrow it down to one. One that comes to mind is American Economic History with Professor Jensen.

I also really enjoyed my Real Analysis class. Although I found myself struggling through it at times, Professor Kantrowitz had an amusing way of simplifying some pretty challenging material in ways that made it much easier and enjoyable to understand.

Q. What are your plans after graduation?
A. Depending on the opportunities that present themselves, I would love to have the chance next year to go overseas to Europe and play another year of hockey. Beyond that, I see myself working in a competitive team environment while doing something that I enjoy.

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