3View: Texas RoadRunners | North American Tier III Hockey League | NA3HL
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3View: Texas RoadRunners

September 5, 2023

The 3View series will feature an in-depth look into all NA3HL teams in preparation for the 2023-24 season, with two teams being highlighted daily, leading all the way up until the start of the regular season. 3View goes in-depth into each NA3HL team and will include interviews with all the head coaches in the NA3HL, as they provide fans with their expectations and outlook for the 2023-24 season, including taking a look at their potential roster and their strengths as a team for the upcoming season. It will also take a look back on the 2022-23 season and how each team fared and what they accomplished. Best of all, 3View will provide the fans of the NA3HL with an inside look at their favorite team and what to expect.

Texas RoadRunners

Head Coach: Mike Beavis (8th season)

2022-23 Record: 35-9-3, 73 pts (1st in the South Division)

2022-23 Leading Scorer: Matvey Ivanov (85 points)

2023 Playoffs: Lost in the South Division Semi-Finals to New Mexico, 2 games to 1

2023-24 Division: South Division

In 2022-23, the Texas RoadRunners finished fifth in the entire NA3HL with its best record in team history going 35-9-3 with 73 points. After such a victorious regular season, the post season did not go as hoped for Mike Beavis and his squad. With a first-round exit against New Mexico, Beavis was still overall proud of the season and his players.

“Last season was one of the best seasons the franchise had to date,” Beavis said. “I feel we fell very short of what we set out to accomplish and it was all because of a loss of focus as well as a key injury to one of our top players. The loss of focus or overconfidence gave our opponent what they needed to come back and eliminate us from the playoffs in the first round.  But I was still happy with our season and how we established ourselves as a team to beat.”

Since taking over as Head Coach in College Station, Texas, Beavis has turned the RoadRunners around. From battling growing pains as a new franchise, the team did not make the playoffs for its first two seasons in its existence. Beavis, who is entering his 8th season as a head coach, has taken the team to back-to-back playoff berths. Along with that, the first two seasons the team saw a high of 13 wins, to now winning 30 or more games over the last two years. With the bar of excellence continuing to be raised each season, Beavis knows how important it is to be a force in the NA3HL’s South Division.

“For me, it's been a few years now coming in from owning a team up in New York for several years and now being a part of rebuilding my current program and I have seen a lot of changes in the Junior landscape,” Beavis said. “I love this level of play as it gives me the opportunity to do what I feel I do best. Discover players, develop skill and promote players on my team and play a part in helping other teams promote theirs. I love the NA3HL and I feel it is one of the best places for players to develop.”

Beavis, who is a firm believer in the NAHL’s Ladder of Development, has developed numerous college committed players and moving players on to the NAHL. Collegiately, the Road Runners had four NCAA commitments, as well as one ACHA Division-I commitment. Along with that, a couple more ACHA commits that should be announced soon, according to Beavis.

“The college commitments are very important to me as it helps our program to solidify our approach to being a dual-purpose league by helping to develop and move younger players onto the NAHL and our older guys onto the college level of play,” Beavis said.

On top of the College commitments, the RoadRunners were very proud of a few players who made their NAHL debut and who received tenders from NAHL squads.

“Last season we had one of our goalies, Hunter Hein, play for Odessa at the NAHL showcase but he felt he needed a bit more time,” Beavis said. “He was eventually tendered by the Oklahoma Warriors for 2023-24 but left to continue his education early this summer and will be attending SUNY Cortland and will be playing NCAA D3 hockey.  We also had the NA3HL “Rookie of the Year”, Matvey Ivanov, tendered by the Odessa Jackalopes and currently he will be on their roster for training camp and shows signs of sticking with the Jackalopes as he had a tremendous main camp with them.”

For the RoadRunners, the 2022-23 season held a record setting franchise accomplishment. Despite making it to the Fraser Cup Finals, Beavis feels good about the upcoming season, but is looking for big shoes to be filled offensively in terms of scoring.

“I feel pretty good about this season, even though we are losing four of the top five in NA3HL scoring,” Beavis said. “With our returning players, I think guys like Adrian Sanchez, Noah Easterson and TJ Lipsky will be big upfront. While back on defense, we will count on Logan Motz, Brandon Wicker and will look for big things with Luke Weisman. We did make an off season trade for Goalie Krys Jakubowski that we feel could be one of the best in the league.”

Carrying expectations and a desire to be even more competitive, the Texas RoadRunners are excited to kick off the 2023-24 campaign. Beavis and his staff understand there is a lot of work to do to meet the standards they have set to keep the program moving forward.

“With twelve returners and some very good players joining us to see if we can get to the unfinished business we had last season,” Beavis said. “We will be highly competitive and I feel this could be a year that we could stick around for a while.”

Next Up: Wausau Cyclones

 
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