The Cousineau Diaries

Broncos Illustrated sat down with senior defenseman Dave Cousineau on Tuesday for the latest installment of the Cousineau Diaries. Dave talked about the long tiring trip to Alaska, overcoming disappointment at Ohio State, and preparing for first place Ferris State.

The trip up to Alaska. I've gotten pretty used to it over the years, it's my third time being up there, but just because you're ready for it doesn't mean that your body is ready for the abuse it takes during the course of the day. That first day we left at something like 4:30 in the morning, we drove to Chicago, about a 3-hour bus trip. We waited in the airport a couple of hours. By the time we made it to Alaska it was something like 9 at night. Basically we were traveling all day. You're doing a lot of sitting around, a lot of sleeping, a lot of playing cards. It's basically a day were you're basically doing nothing, which is almost harder on your body when you have to play the next day.

Alaska as a whole, it's actually pretty nice up there. It's cold and dark and there's not really much to do. Especially when you're going up there for a weekend of hockey, basically hockey is one your mind so you spend a lot of time in the hotel room and when you're not there you're on the ice.

The games up there, Friday night we came out pretty sluggish, we watched them play and we were down 4-1 in the first period. We came in to the dressing room, coach blew up a little bit, and a lot of the guys blew up. We had a lot of the guys have words with each other and challenge each other and I think as a whole the team responded. To come back and win that game was the kind of lift our team needed at that time in our schedule.

The next night we just carried over what we had going on Friday night into Saturday night and managed to get the sweep. Confidence wise as a team that was huge for us, we hadn't had one on the road since Bowling Green at the start of the year. I don't think we have ever swept Alaska in the history of the program and I think that was big for us as a team to be able to go up there and get 4 points because it's something that doesn't happen very often.

People kind of talk about [the week off we had] whether it's good or bad. You know the Alaska trip takes a lot out of you. We came back and we had 2 days off from practice and I think it was a pretty good thing that week off. We have a lot of guys banged up on our team, [Paul] Davies is just coming back from his broken wrist and a lot of the guys have little nagging injuries, I think it was pretty good for us to have the week off. We went into Ohio State, and week off or not we played some pretty good games, we were right in the games, unfortunately we basically had a couple lapses on shifts, a couple chance that they capitalized on and it probably cost us 3 points last weekend.

[Recovering from let downs like the Ohio State loses] it's something I think from the tone of our practice yesterday we could see as a team that everybody was pretty disappointed, it's probably still in our minds. I think, basically, you just have to be motivated by what happened last weekend. We have to realize that we can beat any team, I think we saw that last week against Ohio State, we had leads on them, we had chances to win the games we just didn't capitalize on the chances we had to get points on the road there. I think that is your motivation going into Ferris State this weekend. There a good team, they're another ranked opponent, they're the top of the CCHA, and I think there's no reason we shouldn't be able to get motivated again after last weekend.

We had the day off today; we have started taking Tuesdays off since February. Today guys just kind of came out and had some fun. I think that's important after the kind of weekend we had last weekend.

Going into tomorrow, Thursday, and Friday we'll probably continue to work on defensive zone overages, Ferris is pretty explosive offensively. They have [Chris] Kunitz up front, we're aware of him. We're just going to continue preparing like it's any other weekend. I think mentally with them being first place in the CCHA makes it a little more exciting for us that weekend.

And now for some fan questions:

Q: What are your career goals after you're done here at Western?

Career goals huh? You know, it's kind of tough when you're a hockey player and you're also a student. I'm in the Integrated Supply Management program, and I'm kind of struggling with I'd like to go play hockey for a couple more years after I'm done here. Where it lands me next year in kind of dependant on where the team finishes this year, and how far we go, whether we go to ‘the Joe' and win at ‘the Joe.' I think some of the players in the past how far they've gone has depended a lot on a teams success so hopefully we can continue to have success as a team here. What league I will be playing in next year I'm not sure. As for my business career I'm kind of putting it on hold here for a while, while I play hockey and just try to do well in school and do all I can.

Q: What is the most exciting game you've played in?

There's probably been about 4 or 5 here at Lawson that have just been wild. My freshman year we tied Michigan State at home when they were ranked #2 or #3 in the country I think. Sophomore year we beat Michigan State when they were #1 in the country. They were both overtime games, and those are always exciting. It's hard for me to pinpoint one. Maybe if we had won a playoff series or something, that would probably be it, but its got to be one of those Michigan State games at home where we beat them in overtime. It's wild to show up to class on Monday and the campus is kind of excited, and everyone's excited. Those are the games that you really remember.

Q: What's been your most embarrassing hockey moment?

I've scored on my net a few times. I don't know I've got a lot of them. I do a lot of dumb things out there sometimes. That's tough to pinpoint too, I've probably scored on my own net in my life 5 or 6 times. I don't think I've done it here as a Bronco. I saw [Shawn Rose] Rosey in Michigan one time; he left his skate guard on. He comes flying out onto the ice for warm-ups and he just bails on the ice. That was pretty good. I was kind of embarrassed for him on that one.

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