Ohio State will add a new roller hockey rink to its Adventure Recreation Center near the end of October.
Dave DeAngelo, senior associate director in the Office of Student Life for Recreational Sports, said the rink is replacing a roller hockey rink on North Campus that was torn down five years ago during the North Residential District transformation project. The project added new residential and dining halls as well as recreational facilities and support facilities for the Second-year Transformational Experience Program.
“We just didn’t have enough room to put it [on North Campus] and make it a regulation-sized rink,” DeAngelo said.
The university set aside money from the North District project for a new roller hockey rink, DeAngelo said, which led to the current building plans.
The new rink will be available not only to students who play roller hockey for fun, but for members of the university’s roller hockey club as well, said Nathaniel Montgomery, a fifth-year in computer engineering and treasurer of the Roller Hockey Club at Ohio State.
The team, which currently competes nationally on a Division III level, used to practice on the 80-by-160-foot regulation-size rink on North Campus before it was torn down, Montgomery said, as well as in an indoor roller hockey rink in Grandview. However, the rink in Grandview closed about two years ago, which left the team with nowhere to practice locally.
“The last couple of years, our practice has been either we’ve gone up to Akron and done preseason weekends against the University of Akron while also practicing at the same time,” Montgomery said. “Also, we’ll just go up the night before tournament weekend or regular season weekend.”
Tournament and regular season locations varied from places such as Chicago, Detroit and Cincinnati. However, with the return of a regulation-sized rink on campus, the club will be able to practice in Columbus.
“It’s a huge step in the right direction for our program,” Montgomery said. “Having it for university students only, we’ll be able to schedule when we’re able to use the facility, which will be nice.”
While the rink is outdoors and limits the club seasonally, Montgomery said he hopes the new rink will show off the sport to the university community and help recruit players to the club.
“This is very huge exposure for us,” Montgomery said. “What [we] as a club are excited about is yes, the facility is nice and we’re going to be able to practice a lot more than we usually have, but the exposure that it brings to the overall game itself and the club itself is huge.”