The Cousineau Diaries

Broncos Illustrated sat down with Dave Cousineau last week to get his latest installment of his diaries. In this installment of The Cousineau Diaries, Dave looks ahead to the second half of the season, he talks about what he did for the holiday break and he talks about the teams self proclaimed ping pong champion.

"I don't know if I really want to talk about the first half. Basically as a team we've put it behind us, there's a lot of lessons that we've learned from the first half. We had a lot of good things happen. Some weaker points I think we played a lot of good teams. We've learned what it takes to compete with teams of the kind of caliber of Colorado College, Cornell and Maine and I only think we can get better. As a team we put the first half behind us and it's something that, starting out this week out at Michigan, we're really focusing on this next half of our season. I think we still play sixteen CCHA games and if you look at the league right now it's wide open. Anyone can finish anywhere. We're pretty confident that we can maybe finish in the top three or four in the league. During this weekend against Michigan it's going to be a huge step for us to make a proactive run. Going up there as a senior I haven't won there yet in my career. I don't think we've even been in a game up there so we're really motivated to try to do something up there. We're really motivated to go into Michigan to try to put together a solid game, try to be in the game and that will give us a chance to win. It's a tough place to play, it's probably one of the toughest places to play in all of college hockey and I'm excited about the opportunity and I think a lot of the other seniors are too.

Holiday break away from hockey was good. I went to visit my brother in San Diego. He plays for the San Diego Gulls in the West Coast Hockey League. So I get to see him play maybe once a year. Luckily I got to go down there and watch him play three games. It was an exciting time, spend about six or seven days with my family spend Christmas there. I got to play golf a couple of times. It was nice to sort of be away from the rink, sort of be away from school and just a little time to relax. Actually I had the opportunity I skated a couple of times. The ice was open and after a few of their practices I just went out there and kept the hands sharp, tried to skate a little but not really focus too much on anything.

It's awesome (playing in front of a jam-packed Lawson Arena). I said it before and I will say it again, we have the best fans in the CCHA by far. Our student section is unbelievable. They're loud and they're rowdy. It really gives us a lift. It gives us a lift when maybe the other team scores and the fans stay in it and they keep us going. I love playing here at Lawson. It's one thing I will remember forever just the way our fans are in this place and driving to the rink at 4:30 and seeing a huge line in front of Lawson before we even get to the rink is just an awesome feeling. What I would like to see happen but maybe not this year but down the road as this program keeps getting better is seeing an atmosphere like that every game here. I think that's one thing that a lot of people would like to see. Not just the Michigan, Michigan State games but the fans it's going to take winning, it's going to take some championships and hopefully that's what we are trying to do here."

Cousineau Talks to the Fans

"What I really want to talk about, I was reading on the website, is the self proclaimed ping pong champion. Drake says it's him, the reason he's self proclaimed is because he's never actually beat me. So he might say he's a ping pong champion but we've battled a few times and I don't think he's ever beat me. I'm pretty sure he hasn't. The only guy that might be able to lay a claim is (Brent) Rumble because he beat me once and then refused to play me ever again. We used to have a ping pong table in our garage. Just had to clear that up because he was in their bragging again.

On the blocked shot (against Findlay) I'm fine. It just kind of hit me in a funny spot. Like I got it on the top of the knee like right on the bone and it's actually better that it hit the bone because except for a little pain it doesn't bother me at all skating.

We really haven't changed our system at all. As far as we've played, we've made a couple of minor adjustments in the fore check and that's basically all we've changed system wise. It's kind of a mindset that we have. If you look at some of our games against the bigger teams we came out flat that Friday night in each game. I think that's something that we have to do is mentally. Come ready to play and be focused and not kind of get in that lapse and let up the first goal early. I think it's just the mindset of the team being confident and going into playing some of these teams and knowing we can be the best and we can beat the best.

That win (Findlay) probably doesn't mean anything in our season, but it's a lift, it's a step to take in the right direction towards going in against Michigan. It's a great tune up after the break. Guys aren't too sharp usually after the break and I think we do a lot of good things in that game. We compete hard, we generate a lot of chances and that's what we needed to do getting ready for this Michigan series. (Pat) Dwyer has been struggling of late and to see him come out and get that goal. (Vince) Bellissimo played well and it's important for a lot of guys to be able to handle the puck a little more, a little more of the time you can make some plays. We do a lot of things well and I think that's what's important."

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