Cougars’ Hockey Player Steps Up to the ECHL League for a Weekend

On Friday, March 9th College of Charleston student Brett Epstein laced up his skates for his second ECHL game of his goaltender career. The Political Science major with a minor in International Studies was previously called up to play for the Orlando Solar Bears in a game against the South Carolina Stingrays on January 27. 

Epstein received a call Tuesday, March 6 from Ryan Warsofksy, Stingrays head coach, asking him to join the team through the weekend. “The coaching staff and players treated me like I had been there for years and it really made me feel comfortable,” said Epstein. In the end, Epstein knew there was a job that needed to be done, so he got down to business and did whatever he could do contribute to the team.

On Friday the team lost 3-2 against the Greenville Swamp Rabbits, while on Saturday goaltender Parker Milner shut out the Atlanta Gladiators, leading Stingrays to win 5-0.

Saturday was the Ray’s annual Pink in the Rink Night where proceeds went to Share Our Suzy of the Lowcountry. With pink ice and speciality jerseys the Rays played in front of a crowd of 6,878 fans.

The speciality pink jerseys were auctioned off after the game, where Epstein’s jersey went for $1000. While Epstein’s brother was bidding on his brothers first professional jersey, he was outbid by another fan.

“It was great to be able to meet that fan and thank him for his support and for the amazing donation to the great cause,” said Epstein.

Some of Epstein’s favorite moments from the week include spending time with the team in the locker room and playing soccer during pre-warm ups. “They really took me in like one of their own and made me feel right at home,” he said.

Epstein gives credit to his brother for starting his hockey career, and acknowledges the support of his family through every opportunity thrown his direction.

Epstein wraps up the weekend as something he will “never forget,” and would “do it again in a heartbeat.”

Aside from hockey Epstein is passionate about mental health advocacy and spends a lot of his time speaking to young students and athletes in the hopes of destroying the stigma that surrounds mental health. His blog is written to offer “help, hope, and guidance” through personal experiences with mental health.  He can also be seen on Revisionhockey.com, discussing how hockey helped him overcome some uncertainties in his life.

A post on his website states, “I am not perfect but I know that focusing on my many good qualities will help me get used to an attitude of success.”

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