Binghamton, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Perhaps it was an omen when their top free agent signing retired and their top prospect chose to move back to Russia.
It was a season to forget in Binghamton hockey, just the second time ever a team finished dead last after winning the title.
Gabe Osterhout looks back on a lost season in this week's action sports spotlight.
The 2011-2012 season started with such promise for the Binghamton Senators.
Opening night, they raised the Calder Cup Championship banner...then fell to Hershey.
They would have several ups and downs throughout the season, ending with an overtime loss to Norfolk.
"There's a lot of what ifs about this year. You can look back at it and throw out a million excuses. What if this would have happened but at the end of the day, we didn't get the job done and we'll all be thinking about that this summer as we're training and stuff," says defenseman Tim Conboy.
To be fair, captain Mark Parrish and last year's league MVP Corey Locke missed a lot of time due to injury.
Newly signed defenseman Lee Sweatt retired before the season even started.
Other players from last year's Calder Cup winning team who started here were quickly called up to the NHL team.
That allowed some of younger players to get some experience.
"Obviously you want to win and you want to learn how to win. We were obviously a pretty young team and a lot of guys got a lot of ice time, got a lot of opportunity to play and that's not going to hurt," says rookie defenseman Mark Borowiecki.
Even though the B-Sens knew awhile ago that they weren't going back to the playoffs this season, the team never quit on Coach Kurt Kleinendorst.
"Nobody's been able to break our spirit and it's been tough...I'll tell you. I come to the rink everyday and try to keep positive attitude everyday and keep working hard everyday. The one think I talk about from day 1, I challenge my guys...I want you to get better somehow, some way everyday," says head coach Kurt Kleinendorst.
Even during the rough season, the fans stuck behind their hometown team.
"Last place team...we didn't win a lot of games...they win the Calder Cup last year and we do a complete 180...they were here every night, made noise for us every night. This place was full and they were chanting the Sens chant...it was everything we could have asked for," says goalie Mike McKenna.
Everything, except a trip to the playoffs.
In Binghamton, Gabe Osterhout, Action Sports.