Logan Calder is enjoying the new scenery in his first year of hockey away from Manitoba. Calder was born and raised in Portage and played 20 years of hockey in his hometown.
Now, in his first season playing at the NCAA level in Rhode Island, Calder says it's been quite the change.
"The lifestyle is really different. There's no snow right now. It's fall weather. So, seeing pictures of back home, where there's a couple of feet of snow, it's difficult to comprehend," Calder explains. "The transition has been good. I live with six other guys in a house, and we make it work. Overall, it's been a good time."
The 21-year-old is in his freshman season with the Salve Regina Seahawks and has put up five points through seven games. In one of those games, Calder tied a team record with three power-play goals in a single game. This hat-trick performance also earned him the Commonwealth Coast Conference's Player of the Week award.
"It was kind of a rocky start (to the season). I was just trying to get used to the pace of play, it's faster than in junior," says Calder. "We have a good team here. The older guys really have helped all of us freshmen get used to the playstyle."
The Seahawks are currently in the middle of the pack when it comes to the standings, as they have a record of 4-2-1. Calder is tied for third on the team in total points and hopes he can keep that up.
"I've been playing with some good linemates, which has helped me get the points. I've played with a couple of different guys but finding who I play best with has been fun."
Calder notes one of his main goals the rest of the way is to build chemistry with his linemates as he did in Portage.
"I want to build off last year and mesh with some teammates a little better," Calder continues. "I want to be, kind of, how I was with (Daniel) Siso and (Matt) Wisener in Portage. Try to figure out these guys' playstyles a little better and go from there."
The Portager was the team captain of last year's Terrier squad before being traded to Dauphin at the trade deadline, where he went on to win the Turnbull Cup. Calder finished last season with over a point per game and put up 14 points in the playoffs as well. He outlines what that season taught him.
"I think just trying to play my game and play with confidence has been the biggest key that I've taken into this year."
The schedule in the NCAA is significantly different from the MJHL, as games usually only take place on weekends and typically involve playing the same team on consecutive nights. With this being the case, Calder says it gives them a lot of opportunities to improve in practice.
"We'll practice Monday to Thursday, and we're able to work out kinks from the last weekend or work on things that we want to use in the upcoming weekend."
Calder and the Seahawks have just over two months to keep finding themselves as a team before their conference playoffs begin on February 22.