SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — As it gets set for its inaugural season in 2023, Augustana hockey will have a conference to play in as the school was officially introduced as the 9th member of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association today.

Augie joins fellow NSIC schools Minnesota State Mankato and Bemidji State in the CCHA, as well as the University of St. Thomas among others.

Since announcing it was starting a division 1 hockey team that included brand new on-campus arena, the Vikings have been busy, naming Garrett Raboin as their first ever head coach in April, and now they have a set conference for their inaugural season in 2023-24, and that news will only help the program as it continues to build from the ground up.

“Players and parents, that’s one of the first questions they ask, is what league are you going to play in. For our recruiting footprint, I think a lot of the players we are targeting are well aware of the CCHA, they know the history, the success, not only in academics but in athletics,” Raboin said.

“We are selling a vision. Now we can show progress right outside the door, that this vision is becoming a reality. But at the end of the day a startup program is selling a vision and what you want to be a part of. To know that you’ve got a schedule, you’re going to have something to play for when you’re here, I think it says a ton,” Morton said.