Vikings to join Ice Cats varsity hockey team

Due to an expected decline in the number of players available, the Ice Cat varsity hockey team will feature three schools this coming winter.

Lake Region and Fryeburg Academy joined forces to form the Ice Cats, and now Oxford Hills is being added.

At a May school board meeting, Lake Region Athletic Director Paul True explained that projected Ice Cat numbers were down for the upcoming season. The same was true for the Vikings, who expect to field 12 skaters.

All three schools use Bridgton Academy for ice time, so a co-op team appears to be a good fit. True noted that many of the high school players were members of Western Maine Youth Hockey teams, so familiarity will be present.

Another benefit will be cost, which will be shared by the three schools, thus allowing students to pay less to participate. Lake Region players pay a “fee” to compete — covering costs such as ice time.

As for coaching, Dave Lepage will remain the Ice Cats head coach, with assistants likely coming from Fryeburg and Oxford Hills.

The addition of Oxford Hills to the program was presented to the Maine Principals’ Association’s Management Committee on May 9. The MPA approved the request.

“It saved our program,” True said.

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