Ahead of Friday's opener, Rail Yard Dawgs searching for identity

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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ7) Friday night, a professional hockey game will be played in the Berglund Center for the first time in ten years when the Rail Yard Dawgs host Knoxville. For die hard hockey fans in the Valley, it's been a long time coming.

The team posed for some head shots today as they wrap up training camp and prepare to get down to business.

Less than 1,900 hundred tickets remain for the Dawgs' opener.

Head Coach Sam Ftorek is still trying to figure out what his team's identity will be but he promises that the Dawgs will compete.

“The style that you play is dictated by the players that you have. If you have a bunch of guys that are 6-4, 220, then you are not going to have a run and gun style,” Ftorek said. “Right now we are getting a couple of guys in, and once they come in we're going to try to be a deep team. Ideally, that's what we're doing. We're going to try and possess the puck because if we have it, they can't score. But we are going to be as deep as possible. We want our third line to be better than any other third line and that's where we're going to kind of make our moves.”

Rail Yard Dawgs center Steve Mele said: “I think we want to be a very fast team. We're not the biggest team. I'll be the first to say it. But we're a team that works hard and we're big on the transition so if we do create a turnover in the defensive zone, we want to move up ice quick and we want to get into the other zone as fast as we can.”