In its 18 games played so far, Ohio has been mostly dominant in a majority of them.

Having defeated nationally acclaimed teams such as Lindenwood, Stony Brook and Illinois, there’s one game Ohio will surely be underprepared for regardless of how much it attempts to prepare itself for: Thanksgiving.

It’s the time of year when the Bobcats coaches and players go their separate ways to recuperate in mind and body. With its injury bug and consistently brutal schedule, Ohio will look to take the week off on the ice — and hit the couch.

For some players, Thanksgiving is the-end-all-be-all of holidays, and for others, it’s just a time to get away from hockey and be with family and friends.

Regardless, coaches and players alike know what lies ahead of them at the dinner table: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans and cranberry sauce. The list goes on and on. The team will head into its toughest challenge separately.

Each member of the team will have different obstacles to overcome on their plates.

For coach Sean Hogan, it’s only the classics.

“Turkey for sure,” Hogan said. “Mashed potatoes with tons of gravy, stuffing and cranberry sauce.”

Hogan’s turkey day expectations are large as he’s expecting himself to coach through three plates at the dinner table.

“I’m going to eat my face off.”

Jimmy Thomas eyes the opponent in a different light compared to most.

“Mom’s stuffing and mashed potatoes,” the goalie chuckled. “I’m a big fan of carbs.”

Thomas played his best weekend of the year this past weekend against No. 3 Lindenwood and allowed just one goal in 63 shots on goal.

In front of every goalie is a defense willing to lay it all on the line for the body in net. Defensemen Jake Faiella and Grant Hazel are no exception to the rule, and they're prepared to face the intricacies of the upcoming holiday.

“I’m heavy on the carbs,” Faiella said. “I’m a big sweet potato guy, turkey, stuffing, cornbread.”

Hazel, on the other hand, has a different game plan in mind for Thursday’s opponent.

“A lot of turkey,” Hazel said. “Maybe, probably some stuffing.”

Finding the balance between proteins and carbohydrates has long been one of the toughest challenges in preparation for Thanksgiving.

In terms of carbs, they trick you into being full for a while, but then you just want more and they’ll still beat you in the long run by the weight gain.

The protein game plan on Thanksgiving is one of a biological mindset. Consume as much turkey as possible, but turkey has a natural amino acid in it called tryptophan. Once in the blood stream, tryptophan sends messages to the brain, signaling the body to sleep.

Regardless of proteins and carbs, the Bobcats and the rest of those who celebrate Thanksgiving are sure to be in a culinary battle.

Belts will be unbuckled, belches heard around the table, but above all, it’s time spent with those who matter the most.

Happy Thanksgiving.


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