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Cepis stands tall

Saturday, December 10th
Cepis stands tall

The average NHL forward is 6?1?, 202 pounds. Steelhead Forward Jacob Cepis is 5?8?, 165 pounds. But according to Cepis, what seems to be a daunting disadvantage really isn?t. ?I?ve dealt with it my whole life and I don?t really think about it anymore,? Cepis said of his stature. ?You have to do something that?s going to wow people as a smaller player, but with how hockey is now it?s not that big of disadvantage.? The success of Cepis? young hockey career supports his confidence and gives hope to those not blessed with as much height. In just 19 games for Idaho, Cepis has tallied 13 points (7g, 6a). His seven goals has him tied for third on the team. ?He has a ton of skill,? said Idaho head coach Hardy Sauter, ?Most games he very, very busy. He?s been good to this point, but if it ever clicks, he could be a exceptionally good.? Cepis grew up in Ohio, a state not known for its hockey, but found the sport through his father, who played growing up. ?It?s all football pretty much,? said Cepis of Parma, his hometown in Northern Ohio. ?I got into hockey at an early age because of my dad and I liked it and stuck with it.? Cepis, who is an admitted ?big baseball guy? and played second base throughout high school, said hockey was always his first passion and went on to play collegiately at Bowling Green and the University of Minnesota. Cepis? transition to the pro game has been quick. After completing his final season at Minnesota, Cepis briefly joined the Lake Erie Monsters of the AHL. The following season, he found himself in foreign territory- literally. A series of events landed the 22 year old in Finland and the Finnish Elite League, with little professional experience and few people that understood English. ?The hockey is really good, but I just don?t think I was ready,? said Cepis. ?They took care of me, but it?s tough when you don?t have anyone to speak English with.? Cepis? stint in Finland last nearly three months and it was back to the states and more foreign territory ? Boise, Idaho ? and a warm welcome. ?All the guys are great and at first I was surprised at how many people come to hockey games out here,? Cepis said. ?They?re big on sports out here so I?m enjoying it. I?m used to more snow, but I am really enjoying it.? The Steelheads (9-12-3) have experienced somewhat of a slow start, but Cepis and the rest of the Steelheads are confident in what the future holds. ?As a team, we?re disappointed where we?re at right now,? mentioned Cepis. ?We know and we?ve shown that we?re a better team than our record states and we?re focusing on stringing together a few wins.? (Story written by Media Relations intern Jake Drzayich)

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