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The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Star winger Chris Ryan returns to SBU hockey

    Already loaded with depth up front, Stony Brook’s ice hockey team has gotten a big boost with the return of senior winger Chris Ryan, who was thought to of graduated the previous year.

    “It feels good,” Ryan said when asked about coming back.

    “This is the deepest team we’ve had in my career. I have high expectations for this team.”

    Ryan was originally looking into playing professionally this season, either in Denmark, the Netherlands or close to home.

    The Brooklyn Aviators, a team in the Federal Hockey League, invited him to their training camp in set to start in October.

    However, the uncertainty of not having a contract, as well as needing a few credits to complete his degree, led Ryan to coming back to Stony Brook.

    “I thought [coming back] would be better for my development,” Ryan said.

    Ryan is considered one of the team’s best players in their recent history, tallying 124 points in 98 games over three seasons for Stony Brook.

    Head coach Chris Garafalo lauded Ryan after the team’s second-to-last home game last season on February 5, when he thought Ryan had played his final season for the Seawolves.

    “I don’t think we can replace him,” Garafalo said during the post-game interview with the Statesman.

    Garafalo mentioned having discussions with Ryan throughout the team’s training camp in late August, but was “fifty-fifty” on if the high-scoring winger would come back.

    “It was a little bit of a surprise,”  said senior defenseman Jason Aro . “Everybody thought he had graduated.”

    The unexpected return of Ryan will provide Stony Brook with yet another offensive weapon, as well as leadership and experience in the lockerroom especially since the team will be switching to the Eastern States Collegiate Hockey League.

    “He rounds us out perfectly,” Garafalo said. “He’s the icing on the cake.”

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