Ottawa

Carleton Ravens return to varsity hockey after 33 years

The Carleton Ravens will face off against the University of Ottawa Gee Gees in their first regular season varsity men's hockey game since 1974.

For the first time in more than three decades,along-lost Ottawa flock will fly across the ice Friday night.

The Carleton Ravens will face off against the University of Ottawa Gee Gees in their first regular season varsity men's hockey game since 1974.

Defenceman Brad Good said he can already feel the rivalry between Carleton University and the University of Ottawa.

"Hopefully the crowd is as excited as we are to be there," the second-year history major told CBC Radio's All in a Day Thursday.

The original Carleton Ravens men's hockey team was disbanded33 years ago,after the university decided it was too costly.

In 1991, Carleton students voted in a referendum to bring the team back, and a decade later, theygave the universitya petition with 1,000 names on it supporting the cause, said Paul Correy, who heads a group of former Carleton Ravens hockey players called the Bald Ravens.

The university finally said it would find the funds to revive the team.

"I'm fairly confident they're here for the long run and they're behind us all the way," said coach Fred Parker.

Parker said he realizes the fledgling team is at a disadvantage compared tovarsity opponentswho have been playing together for years.

"We don't have the experience of other teams, but I think character overcomes a lot of stuff," he said, adding that was his focus in putting the team together.

The team won three of five exhibition games, including one against Royal Military College on Sept. 21.

Good, who comes from Kitchener and played four seasons in the Ontario Hockey League for the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, said his new team has surprised itself.

"The idea behind the season is just [to]try and surprise everyone," he said.

Bobby McBride, a forward who played four seasons for St. Mary's University in Halifax, is one of the few players on the Ravens with varsity experience.

Everything about the Ravens has exceeded his expectations, he said, adding: "I guess it's pretty special to be involved in the comeback."

The Ravens willface the Gee Gees at the University of Ottawa sports complex arena Friday, and will play the Gee Gees again Saturday in their first home game at Carleton University's Ice House.