|Air Force Falcons men's ice hockey|
|University||United States Air Force Academy|
|Head coach||Frank Serratore|
27th season, 438–417–98 (.511)
|Arena||Cadet Ice Arena|
Colorado Springs, Colorado
|Colors||Blue and silver|
|NCAA Tournament appearances|
|2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2017, 2018|
|Conference Tournament championships|
|2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2017, 2018|
|Conference regular season championships|
The Air Force Falcons men's ice hockey team is a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I college ice hockey program that represents the United States Air Force Academy. The Falcons are a member of Atlantic Hockey. They play at the Cadet Ice Arena in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Air Force Academy's Ice hockey program began as a club team in 1966, led by former Michigan head coach and six-time national champion Vic Heyliger. The program grew swiftly and posted a winning record by its third season. In their fourth season, the team posted an impressive 25-6 mark and had the nation's leading scorer on the roster, Dave Skalko. When Heyliger retired in 1974, turning the team over to John Matchefts, the success continued with two more 20+ win seasons in three years. By the time the 1980 rolled around, however, the team's on-ice results began to flag and after a pair of disappointing, single-digit-win seasons Matchefts pushed his team to a .500-record before turning control over to the program's all-time leading scorer. Chuck Delich led the program for the 12 seasons, posting moderate results for most of his tenure, but as the 20th century drew to a close, the Falcons' days as a plucky Independent were numbered.
In 1997, former Denver head coach Frank Serratore was hired to replace Delich and recorded two 15-win seasons before everything changed for the Falcons. In 1999, Air Force became a founding member of the CHA, joining with the other service academy Army and five other newly-minted Division I teams. Despite the other programs having little history of success, Air Force was unable to make much headway in the conference, with the best finish being 4th out of 7 teams in their inaugural year. Army left the conference after only one year, leaving the conference with only six programs, and the Falcons found themselves as one of the worst. Air Force finished in 5th- or 6th-place for four consecutive seasons and threw in a pair of 4th-place marks for good measure. Despite their regular season woes, the Falcons did achieve some success in the CHA tournament, reaching the semifinals three times despite being an underdog. By 2006, however, it became apparent that the CHA was in trouble. The Falcons left the CHA and were accepted into Atlantic Hockey, rejoining Army in the same conference.
The change seemed to suit the Falcons, who posted their first winning season in 7 years. In the conference tournament, Air Force defeated Holy Cross 3-0 before stunning #1 seeded Sacred Heart 5-4 in overtime. In the championship match, the Falcons took on Army and routed the Black Knights 6-1 to win the program's first conference championship and receive their first bid into the NCAA tournament. Though they lost to Minnesota in the opening round, the success would continue for the next two years with two additional Atlantic Hockey tournament titles and culminated with a 28-win season in 2009 where they won their first regular season conference title and NCAA tournament game. After a middling season in 2010, the Falcons posted back-to-back conference championships but failed to escape the first round in either season. Air Force spent the mid-teens rebuilding their program, and it came to a head in 2017 with their sixth Atlantic Hockey crown. The Falcons played so well over the course of the season that there was some talk of them making the NCAA tournament even if they were to lose the Atlantic Hockey championship (an exceedingly rare occurrence for Atlantic Hockey Teams). Their second quarterfinal appearance was followed by another in 2018, where they were outplayed by eventual champion Minnesota–Duluth until the final period.
All-time coaching records
As of the end of the 2022–23 season
|Totals||4 coaches||55 seasons||831–841–126||.497|
Awards and honors
U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame
- Marc Kielkucki (2001)
- Brian Gornick (2001)
- Derek Olson (2002)
Second Team All-CHA
- Brian Gornick (2000)
- Andy Berg (2001, 2003)
- Brian Gineo (2005)
- Michael Mayra (2006)
- Eric Ehn (2006)
All-CHA Rookie Team
- Andy Berg (2000)
- Joe Locallo (2001)
- Zach Sikich (2002)
- Matt Charbonneau (2005)
- Eric Ehn (2005)
- Michael Mayra (2006)
- 2006–07: Eric Ehn, F
- 2008–09: Andrew Volkening, G; Greg Flynn, D; Jacques Lamoureux, F
- 2009–10: Tim Kirby, D; Jacques Lamoureux, F
- 2010–11: Scott Mathis, F
- 2011–12: Tim Kirby, D; Scott Mathis, F; Kyle De Laurell, F
- 2012–13: Adam McKenzie, D; Kyle De Laurell, F
- 2015–16: Shane Starrett, G
- 2016–17: Phil Boje, D
- 2018–19: Billy Christopoulos, G
Career Scoring leaders
GP = Games played; G = Goals; A = Assists; Pts = Points; PIM = Penalty minutes
Career Goaltending Leaders
Minimum 35 games
Statistics current through the start of the 2017-18 season.
As of September 14, 2023.
|No.||S/P/C||Player||Class||Pos||Height||Weight||DoB||Hometown||Previous team||NHL rights|
|1||Guy Blessing||Junior||G||6' 3" (1.91 m)||180 lb (82 kg)||2001-05-08||Chandler, Arizona||Lone Star (NAHL)||—|
|4||Luke Rowe||Senior||D||6' 1" (1.85 m)||206 lb (93 kg)||1998-08-08||Succasunna, New Jersey||Boston Jr. Bruins (NCDC)||—|
|6||Owen Baumgartner||Freshman||D||5' 10" (1.78 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2002-07-01||Owatonna, Minnesota||Oklahoma (NAHL)||—|
|7||Brian Adams||Senior||F||5' 8" (1.73 m)||175 lb (79 kg)||1999-12-07||San Ramon, California||Wenatchee (BCHL)||—|
|8||Ethan Ulrick||Freshman||F||5' 11" (1.8 m)||175 lb (79 kg)||2003-04-25||Lakewood, Illinois||Salmon Arm (BCHL)||—|
|9||Lucas Coon||Junior||F||6' 0" (1.83 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2001-11-24||Steamboat Springs, Colorado||Odessa (NAHL)||—|
|10||Austin Schwartz||Junior||F||5' 9" (1.75 m)||175 lb (79 kg)||2001-06-18||Parker, Colorado||Bismarck (NAHL)||—|
|11||Sam Jacobs||Freshman||F||6' 0" (1.83 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2003-04-25||Plymouth, Minnesota||Wisconsin (NAHL)||—|
|12||James Callahan||Freshman||D||6' 0" (1.83 m)||175 lb (79 kg)||2002-12-18||Minneapolis, Minnesota||Springfield (NAHL)||—|
|13||Mason McCormick||Sophomore||F||6' 4" (1.93 m)||205 lb (93 kg)||2001-05-25||Verona, Wisconsin||Waterloo (USHL)||—|
|14||Jacob Marti||Senior||F||5' 11" (1.8 m)||190 lb (86 kg)||2002-08-13||Highlands Ranch, Colorado||Bismarck (NAHL)||—|
|15||Owen Dubois||Freshman||F||6' 4" (1.93 m)||200 lb (91 kg)||2002-07-06||Madison, Wisconsin||Aberdeen (NAHL)||—|
|16||Sam Brennan||Senior||D||6' 0" (1.83 m)||200 lb (91 kg)||2000-01-16||Brighton, Michigan||Lone Star (NAHL)||—|
|17||Parker Brown||Senior||F||5' 10" (1.78 m)||165 lb (75 kg)||1999-09-08||Hanahan, South Carolina||Fairbanks (NAHL)||—|
|18||Holt Oliphant||Sophomore||F||5' 10" (1.78 m)||190 lb (86 kg)||2001-05-17||Northbrook, Illinois||Johnstown (NAHL)||—|
|19||Nick Remissong||Freshman||F||6' 0" (1.83 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2002-05-19||Lake Forest, Illinois||Trail (BCHL)||—|
|20||Nolan Cunningham||Freshman||D||6' 2" (1.88 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2001-12-17||Helena, Montana||Fairbanks (NAHL)||—|
|21||Liam Hansson||Sophomore||F||6' 1" (1.85 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2001-12-16||Ramsey, New Jersey||Cranbrook (BCHL)||—|
|22||Chris Hedden||Sophomore||D||6' 0" (1.83 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2002-09-20||Kalamazoo, Michigan||Omaha (USHL)||—|
|24||Nate Horn||Senior||F||5' 11" (1.8 m)||160 lb (73 kg)||1999-03-02||Elk River, Minnesota||Minnesota Wilderness (NAHL)||—|
|26||Clayton Cosentino||Junior||F||6' 2" (1.88 m)||198 lb (90 kg)||2000-06-18||San Carlos, California||Aberdeen (NAHL)||—|
|27||Luke Robinson||Senior||D||6' 3" (1.91 m)||202 lb (92 kg)||2000-02-16||Nashville, Tennessee||Dubuque (USHL)||—|
|28||Mitchell Digby||Junior||D||5' 11" (1.8 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2000-06-26||Ottawa Lake, Michigan||Lone Star (NAHL)||—|
|29||Jasper Lester||Junior||D||5' 11" (1.8 m)||190 lb (86 kg)||2000-07-31||Colorado Springs, Colorado||Fairbanks (NAHL)||—|
|30||Dominik Wasik||Freshman||G||6' 1" (1.85 m)||165 lb (75 kg)||2002-07-02||Superior, Wisconsin||Steinbach (MJHL)||—|
|35||Carter Clafton||Freshman||G||6' 2" (1.88 m)||175 lb (79 kg)||2002-03-13||Grand Rapids, Minnesota||Amarillo (NAHL)||—|
|37||Will Gavin||Senior||F||5' 10" (1.78 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||1999-10-21||Durham, Connecticut||Northern (NCDC)||—|
|44||Will Staring||Freshman||D||6' 2" (1.88 m)||195 lb (88 kg)||2003-02-28||Springfield, Virginia||Dubuque (USHL)||—|
|51||Maiszon Balboa||Senior||G||6' 2" (1.88 m)||195 lb (88 kg)||2000-04-18||Colorado Springs, Colorado||Shreveport (NAHL)||—|
|55||Brett Oberle||Sophomore||D||5' 11" (1.8 m)||185 lb (84 kg)||2001-09-27||Woodbury, Minnesota||Wenatchee (BCHL)||—|
|64||Brendan Gibbons||Freshman||F||6' 2" (1.88 m)||205 lb (93 kg)||2002-06-15||South Kingstown, Rhode Island||Maine (NAHL)||—|
|82||Andrew DeCarlo||Junior||F||6' 0" (1.83 m)||190 lb (86 kg)||2000-07-23||Huntington Beach, California||Lone Star (NAHL)||—|
Falcons in the NHL
Goalie Shane Starrett signed an Entry Level Contract with the Edmonton Oilers of the NHL on April 10, 2017. He is currently the only Air Force Falcons Men's Ice Hockey player to be in the NHL or respected affiliates.
- "Air Force Athletics Style Sheet" (PDF). March 12, 2022. Retrieved July 1, 2022.
- "Air Force Falcons Men's Hockey". U.S. College Hockey Online. Retrieved April 8, 2011.
- "What I Believe – Monday Edition". USCHO.com. 2017-03-13. Archived from the original on 2018-08-21. Retrieved 2018-08-20.
- "Minnesota Duluth earns second straight Frozen Four berth with victory over Air Force". USCHO.com. 2018-03-24. Retrieved 2018-08-20.
- "Air Force Hockey 2018-19 Record Book" (PDF). Air Force Falcons. Archived from the original (PDF) on April 12, 2019. Retrieved December 20, 2018.
- "The Record Book" (PDF). University of Michigan. September 22, 2009. p. 20. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 7, 2010. Retrieved August 11, 2010.
- "Air Force Falcons Men's Hockey 2017-2018 Record Book" (PDF). Air Force Falcons. 2018-08-17.
- "2023-24 Men's Ice Hockey Roster". Air Force Falcons. Retrieved September 14, 2023.