Biddeford' Curtis Petit waits for a pass in the 2015-16 season. ALEX SPONSELLER/ Journal Tribune

Biddeford’ Curtis Petit waits for a pass in the 2015-16 season. ALEX SPONSELLER/ Journal Tribune

BIDDEFORD — After finishing the 2015-16 season with an 8-10 record and a heartbreaking overtime loss to Cheverus in the Class A South quarterfinals, the Biddeford hockey team prepares for the 2016-17 season.

The Tigers have a new look this year, beginning with first-year coach Jason Tremblay.

Tremblay likes what he sees in the club so far, and has been pleased with the intensity of practices and scrimmages in the preseason.

“The kids have been working really hard and have done everything the staff has asked of them so far,” said Tremblay. “We’re really happy with what they’ve done so far this season, we have been successful in the early going with our scrimmages. We have a tough schedule so we just need to keep battling every day and get better as the year goes on.”

The Tigers certainly don’t lack depth, carrying a roster of 24 players. Tremblay and his staff have been working hard to understand each player on the ice.

“They had an 8-10 record last year but were in every game. There are 24 kids in the program so I wouldn’t say it’s easy … you have to see where they are at practice and you have to push them. They work hard,” said Tremblay.

Tremblay and his coaches have also brought a structured philosophy to the ice, with gameplans that rely heavily on systems and consistency. Although the Tigers will be organized, they will also have opportunities to stretch the ice and give opponents fresh looks as well.

“I don’t really know how things were before but with our staff we like discipline,” said Tremblay. “We like discipline within our systems and creativity too — we like to let them go a little bit and play, get up and down the ice.”

The Tigers will be tested early, facing some of the conference’s toughest teams  to start, beginning with Southern powerhouse Falmouth on opening night.

Although there is work to be done, Tremblay and the Tigers are confident heading into the upcoming season and are excited to test themselves along the way.

“We’re very prepared — I think we’re facing the top team in our conference in Falmouth so we’ll see what we’ve got,” said Tremblay. “It’s a good measuring stick out of the gate. Win, lose or draw we’ll know by the end of the night where we stand in the conference. We have a long schedule ahead of us with a schedule that we want … I think we’ll be fine.”

— Associate Sports Editor Alex Sponseller can be reached at [email protected] or at 282-1535 ext. 323. Follow the Journal Tribune Sports Department on Twitter @JournalTsports.

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