It’s a true once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

“Yeah, I mean, honestly, I am beyond excited for this opportunity. I never thought a day in my life that I'd be putting on a U.S.A. sweater,” Team USA forward Luke Aquaro said.

A journey to the World University games that was crafted 250 miles away from Lake Placid in Division III Hobart College, Geneva.

"I started skating when I was 5. I've always played hockey and I really, I grew up playing. I never knew that I'd be playing college hockey. I thought I was going to play and see where it takes me. And I never, never thought I'd be in this situation, even getting talked about going to something like this,” Aquaro added.

What You Need To Know

  • The USA Men's ice hockey team for the World University Games in Lake Placid features a few local athletes, led by two players from Hobart College

  • Team USA's head coach is also Hobart's head coach Mark Taylor

  • The local guys are thrilled to not only be able to take part in these games, but to represent their country

Only a sophomore, Aquaro is the leading goal scorer for Hobart, which by the way is the number one team in the nation in Division III. It's a big reason why Aquaro did not make the trip north alone.

“It's great, you know, for me. Plus, I'm a northern New York guy. You know, I grew up in Canton and can't Lake Placid. I mean, that's where my roots are. That's where I come from,” Team USA head coach Mark Taylor added.

In addition, Aquaro’s Hobart teammate, defenseman Cooper Swift and his Hobart head coach, Mark Taylor, joined him on the journey with Taylor taking the reins behind the bench.

“This is an opportunity and a responsibility to represent this group and to represent the country. And to a deeper level, you represent your family and friends, you know, that are rooting for you," Taylor added.

For Aquaro, there are plenty rooting for him. Those from home just outside of Philadelphia to Geneva, and of course, the entire United States of America.

“Not many people get this opportunity to represent their country and it doesn't happen, like these three guys don't really get this opportunity. So I guess we got our taking advantage of this opportunity," he said.