The Gahanna Lincoln High School hockey team won't be contending for the Blue Jackets Cup title.

The Gahanna Lincoln High School hockey team won't be contending for the Blue Jackets Cup title.

The Lions are 5-25-1 overall and are last in the Capital Hockey Conference-White Division at 1-13 with two points, as Upper Arlington, Olentangy Orange and Thomas Worthington already have clinched the division's three berths in the Blue Jackets Cup tournament.

Given the situation, the players appreciated having only one scheduled game last weekend, a 6-1 loss to St. Charles on Jan. 28.

"It's nice not having to focus on hockey for a little while," junior goaltender Nick Kasubinski said. "We'll try to just have some fun, relax and then get back to it."

The Lions do have something to play for with three regular-season games remaining, including the finale against Olentangy Liberty of the CHC-Red on Sunday, Feb. 5, at Chiller Easton. They'll also face Dublin Scioto of the CHC-Blue on Friday, Feb. 3, at Chiller Dublin and Olentangy on Saturday, Feb. 4, at Chiller Easton.

If nothing else, Gahanna still could overtake Olentangy in the standings. The Braves were fourth in the five-team CHC-White at 3-11 (6 points) after losing to Orange 3-1 on Jan. 29. There are other things to play for, too.

"Pride, mostly," junior forward Jack Jander said.

"Right now, we're just trying to come back and finish strong," Kasubinski said. "We want to show we're a better team (than our record indicates)."

The Lions will take part in the six-team Blue Jackets Cup consolation tournament, which begins Feb. 10. Another thing to look forward to is a fresh start during the district tournament, which begins the week of Feb. 13.

"We'd like to get something going and finish with something positive to take us into next year," first-year coach J.J. Stallsworth said. "We haven't given up on this season, though, and I think it's real important to gain some momentum going into the offseason."

Stallsworth also would enjoy sending the seniors out on a good note. They'll be honored before the 8 p.m. game with Olentangy, which won the previous meeting 2-0 on Dec. 31 as Kasubinski stopped 34 of 35 shots before being pulled late for an extra skater.

Unfortunately for the Lions, seniors Shane Austin and Ross Perry have been sidelined with injuries. The other seniors, some of whom play on junior varsity or have split time between the varsity and j.v. teams, are Ryan Judy, Tyler Mizera, Sean Moser, Alex Murch, Jared Olsen, Dan Palombaro, Zach Phillips and Charlie Rodgers.

Moser, Palombaro and Perry are the team's captains.

"They've all contributed in their own way," Stallsworth said. "They've been really good leaders and have done everything we've asked being leaders and captains and everything that goes with that."

The j.v. team was 18-6-3 overall before playing Cincinnati St. Xavier on Jan. 29 and is 11-1-1 to lead the 15-team, single-division CHC.

"We have a lot of juniors; it's a huge class," Jander said. "We have talent. We just have to jump on it and play for the team and play for each other the rest of the way."