Hockey team in good hands with 2 former ‘Paladins’ behind the bench

RMC Hockey Update

Article coordinated by WJO

In the long history of the RMC varsity hockey program there have been only two head coaches who were Ex Cadets. The current skipper, 24974 Richard Lim (Class of 2011). The first was 14080 Andy Scott (Class of 1983). 

By the time Scott completed his role at the helm in 2001- the Paladins were very competitive. They not only won a play-off round, beating Queen’s University in two straight games; they pushed University of Toronto Blues to three games in a best two out of three division final.

Not only have the Paladins failed to win a play-off round or even a win in the playoffs since 2001, they have not earned a play-off berth since the 2005 / 06 season.

The drought could be over.

Last season the team came up short again for post-season play.  However, they showed signs that they will be ready this year.

Over the summer months, the team added Colin Birkas (son of 11341 George Birkas – Class of 1977) to the coaching staff.  In July, Colin was offered a position as head coach of the Calgary Canucks of the Alberta Junior Hockey League, which is the alma mater of Richard Lim.  With the full support of RMC Hockey, Coach Birkas accepted and departed for the new opportunity in Calgary where he will be well-situated to provide RMC awareness on potential recruits in Western Canada.

Colin’s departure left a significant void on the coaching staff. Many experienced individuals applied for the position, but one applicant stood out from the rest due to his personal connection and accomplishments with RMC Hockey. 26547 Alex Pym (Class of 2015), a three-year captain of the Paladins (2012-2015), is second in all-time games played for the Paladins and has been the recipient of almost every award the team and the college presents to varsity athletes.

Alex was medically released from the military in March of this year and he is back working on his Masters of Applied Science in Aeronautical Engineering.

In short his full time job is that of a student.

A point of interest Richard was also Paladins team captain for three seasons.

“The learning curve of how the college operates, and the hockey program within it, is very steep,” noted Coach Lim. “Requiring an assistant coach only a few weeks before training camp, we were drawn to candidates who were acquainted with RMC. Alex’s integral knowledge of the College, RMC Hockey, and the Canadian Armed Forces made him an easy selection.

Lim also noted: “While his coaching experience is somewhat limited, Coach Pym’s knowledge of the game is extraordinary and his experience as a ROTP cadet will prove invaluable. When paired with his remarkable work ethic, he will make a significant contribution to the future success of the program.”

The personable and highly respected Pym is well aware of the hockey challenge ahead.

“I am hoping to bring a wealth of experience from all aspects of RMC. Primarily I want to help develop on ice skills, but I also want to be a resource for cadets as they try to balance academics, athletics, bilingualism, and military training.”

Alex Pym along with a keen recruiting class should help an already pretty good team into the play-offs.

“I believe that under the leadership of Richard Lim the team is going to continue to build off of the progress made in the last two years. He is a great motivator, and his passion for RMC hockey is contagious. I can’t wait to work with him and the other coaches to bring the team together and make some waves in the league.”

Complete 2017/18 hockey schedule – Here