'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
1 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – KENT, Wash. (Feb. 29, 2020) Fans cheer for Soldiers and Sailors in the local Puget Sound Army versus Navy hockey game at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash., Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
2 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – A fan holds up a sign for members playing on the U.S. Army local Puget Sound team at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
3 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army and U.S. Navy service members shake hands after a hockey game at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. Soldiers and Sailors around the Puget Sound area compete in a hockey tournament each year. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
4 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Members of the U.S. Army hockey team pose for a team photo after the Army versus Navy hockey game at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash., Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
5 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army and U.S. Navy compete for the hockey puck at the Army versus Navy hockey tournament played by service members stationed in the Puget Sound area at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
6 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army Capt. Bill Foard reached for the hockey puck at the U.S. Army versus U.S. Navy local Puget Sound hockey tournament at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
7 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Members of the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy hockey team that play in the local Puget Sound area pose for a photo after their hockey tournament at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
8 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Fans and service members stand for the National Anthem at the start of the U.S. Army and U.S. Navy hockey tournament at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
9 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Service members stationed in the Puget Sound area play hockey in the U.S. Army versus U.S. Navy hockey tournament at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
10 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – U.S. Army Soldiers stationed in the Puget Sound area stand tall against the U.S. Navy Sailors during the opening ceremony of the Army versus Navy hockey tournament played at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb. 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
11 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Staff Sgt. Evan Fowler defends his position against a U.S. Navy Sailor during the Army versus Navy hockey game played at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL
'Hockey is freedom': Army beats Navy on ice
12 / 12 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Soldiers stationed in the Puget Sound area celebrate after a victory over the U.S. Navy team during the Army versus Navy hockey game played at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Wash. Feb 29. (Photo Credit: Capt. Rachael Jeffcoat) VIEW ORIGINAL

Capt. William Foard, Commander for Alpha Battery, 1st Battalion, 94th Field Artillery Regiment, from Joint Base Lewis McChord, Wash. began playing hockey at age five and joined the local team this year through the Hockey Saves program-a locally run program that encourages local Soldiers and Veterans to play hockey by providing them free ice time.

"It's a special bond between Soldiers as a unit together and guys in the locker room," said Foard. "Growing up, you have the Brotherhood of hockey and the team in the locker room. Everyone's a brother and family-playing with the same people for years. In the Army, you have your unit that's real close-you deploy and get comfortable living with the same group of guys for nine months to a year."

Staff Sgt. Evan Fowler, operations sergeant from Metro, Detroit, Mich., also with 1-94 FAR, began playing hockey at age three and joined the Army hockey team eight years ago. The players gather locally for one or two practices a month and play two games per year.

"It's a way life in Michigan-my whole family plays-so it's just kind of natural for us to start playing hockey before we can walk," said Fowler. "It gets us away from our job a little bit-to decompress and play together as a team," said Fowler. "It lifts us up out of the norm of everyday Army."

Soldiers-tied with 51 seconds remaining-managed to put two points away for a shootout win.

"The physicality of the game is what pushed us over the edge," said Fowler. "It felt good. It's bragging rights over the Navy because they always beat us in college football, so we've got to take something from them."

For most hockey players, once Junior or College hockey is done, there is just Men's League with no checking/contact which is less competitive-this is the first full-contact game many of the players have experienced since.

"It feels good to represent the Army-it feels better to get the win," said Foard. "I'm just grateful that I was able to play; it was a good game-I wish we could do it more often. Next year I'll be back out here."

The Army hockey team celebrated a second consecutive win over the Navy team from Bremerton, Wash.