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Hockey Mavericks: Dual Dominance for Florida Southern Moccasins

By: Phaedra Jeleniowski

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Will Marshall and Michael Woll.heic

These two Missouri natives may be far from home, but they are thriving at their newfound hockey team in the Sunshine State. William Marshall and Michael Woll, two freshmen at Florida Southern College, are currently seated second and sixth among overall Division 3 players, and continue to shred their way to the top of the standings. 


Marshall and Woll have played together on the ice for years, whether on the same team or not. Their chemistry on the ice is undeniable as they skillfully find a steady rhythm of pass-shoot-score. 


“We pretty much know where each other are going to be which makes it easy, especially in the offensive zone… Typically if you have to think about the plays, you’ve made it too late,” said Woll. “Because we know where each other are we can make it preemptively and beat the defenders there.”


Many hockey players decide to play Juniors before joining a collegiate team. Marshall and Woll both played in Juniors for two years, honing their skills to be precise on the ice. 


“It’s really competitive, and it’s just easy to get better when you have a lot of older guys that have been playing longer than you,” said Marshall. 


Marshall’s hope was to play Division 1 hockey, but after his experience in Juniors and anticipation for college, he originally chose to attend a Division 3 school in Massachusetts. 


However, FSC caught his and Woll’s attention following a tour of the school and phone call with Coach Gilles Richard. He showed them the many advantages to being a Moccasin. Since then they embraced the team as their new family. 


Marshall made it clear that the atmosphere of the Moccasin’s hockey team was something that kept him and the team engaged in the sport. He found that they all look forward to playing “whether it’s a game or practice.”


On the other hand, it’s the freedom and trust of their own gameplay that Woll found to be appealing. Although Coach Richard provides major plays and guidance, he allows his team to use their own strategies and strengths on the ice. 


Both players commonly share the same line, and mention Paul Rigolini as a frequent center to complete their trio. Rigolini, a junior, is also placed high among Division 3 players, holding No. 25 with 24 points.


“He’s always just able to see what Michael and I are thinking and does a good job at being where we need him to be, or he always puts us in really good spots by making a really good play,” said Marshall.


Their strategy has stood strong throughout the season. So far, Marshall holds 61 points followed by Woll with 40. 


During their game against Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Marshall had an astounding double hat trick, his first hat trick since his younger years of play. That game, he had a total of seven goals. 


“I never used to be able to score. I’m always more of a playmaker. So I think we do a good job at making quick plays and finding the open guy backdoor. And then we get on a roll,” said Marshall. 


Woll intends to focus his efforts on remaining out of the penalty box. With his aggressive playing style and impressive height, he often spends more time in the box than others. 


“The main focus for me is to stop getting suspended,” said Woll. “Because if I play, I’m confident I’ll be able to do that [improve in standings].” 


As the season winds down, Marshall and Woll are looking to make a statement in the conference playoffs. They both agree that although making it to those top spots in points standings is a goal, the team’s success will always take precedence over their own. 


 “I didn't really know what to expect coming in,” said Woll. “But I think finishing the year with two championships is probably the big goal.”

ABOUT College Hockey South: Founded in 2008, College Hockey South is a 29-school, 46 team intercollegiate hockey conference spanning seven southeastern U.S. states that competes in AAU College Hockey. College Hockey South is a 501(c)3 not for profit organization.

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