Penn State Hockey

Chris Funkey faced challenge with Minnesota in 1st Big Ten start for Penn State

Penn State’s Chris Funkey made hit first start since November and first career Big Ten start on Friday against Minnesota.
Penn State’s Chris Funkey made hit first start since November and first career Big Ten start on Friday against Minnesota. adrey@centredaily.com

What a time for Chris Funkey to get his first Big Ten start.

The sophomore had not played since Nov. 19 with a start against Arizona State, and has only appeared in three games all season and just seven times in his career. He allowed five goals to the Gophers on Friday.

“They were a very tough team to play against,” Funkey said. “It was a new experience for me, obviously, first Big Ten start. I felt pretty good out there.”

coach Guy Gadowsky made the change after freshman Peyton Jones gave up 11 goals in the last two games, and even if many of the goals were due to defensive breakdowns, the coach still thought a switch was necessary, both for Jones and the team.

While Jones is calm and cool in net, Funkey’s demeanor is more intense and emotional, and Gadowsky thought that also was necessary to shake up the team.

“He’s a freshman who’s played a lot of games in a row,” Gadowsky said of Jones. “I think it can be healthy to take a breath, to sit back, to know that you’re not starting on Friday night and just reevaluate.”

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