What exactly is UMaine Hockey Beat about?
It is a twice-weekly blog dedicated to coverage of the University of Maine Black Bears men’s ice hockey team. The season is underway so I’ll be posting reviews of the week’s previous action by Monday and previews for the upcoming matchups of the weekend by Wednesday. I myself am the sideline reporter/3rd man in/live tweeter for WMEB; I’m going to be immersed in this team. These posts will feature content from the games like post-game press conferences and quotes as well as some statistics.
Why would you write about UMaine Hockey?
Other than previously mentioned that I have a job covering them; I’ve been a UMaine fan born and raised. My dad went to UMaine in the 80’s (’81-’85), his two brothers went to UMaine (’78-’82 & ’89-93). UMaine hockey has been big in our family, my first ice hockey game I can recall attending was a UMaine hockey game, it was against Dartmouth in 2002 at the Cumberland County Civic Center in Portland. I’m very knowledgable in the game of hockey, and I hope that some of you can learn a thing or two from reading this blog.
What is it that makes UMaine hockey so special to write about?
If you’ve never been to a UMaine hockey game at Alfond Arena, I recommend you do so at some point in your life. The Alfond is one of the greatest “barns” in all of college hockey; it’s very unusual design on the outside that gives it a unique look not seen by many arenas. But inside the fans make it a great atmosphere. Led by the student section, which are seated in a balcony above the opposing goaltender for 2 periods, they generate noise that can be deafening. The Alfond has been home to some classics in recent years, the fans continue to show up and be loud. The fans, nicknamed the “Maineiaks” lead the student sections with chants, singing along to all the pep band’s songs. These have factored in to people dubbing the Alfond as one of the hardest venues to play at.
This game is one example of a classic at the Alfond. Maine trailed 3-0 entering the third, but Maine staged a comeback and won it in OT. Maine has proved time and time again that they’re one of the hardest teams to beat at Orono. I was lucky enough to have attended this game.
What about the team though, what makes them special?
Well the program prides itself on winning and tradition, started by legendary head coach Shawn Walsh when he took over in the mid-1980s. He led the program to two national championships in the 90’s, both having significance; in 1993 the Black Bears went 42-1-2 with only one loss, and in 1999 they defeated arch-rival UNH in OT to win the national championship. This program has produced some great hockey players like most notably Paul Kariya, Jim Montgomery, Garth Snow, Jimmy Howard, and Dustin Penner just to name a few. They’ve brough home a pair of Hobey Baker (MVP) winners in 1992 and 1993 where Paul Kariya became the first and only freshman to win the Hobey Baker. They also boast five Hockey East championships. While the team has dipped in performance in the last few years, it’s a new year and era as Maine’s new coach Red Gendron is a descendant of the Shawn Walsh coaching tree as he was an assistant under Walsh in the early 90’s including on the historic 1992-93 team.
What do you hope to get out of this blog?
I hope that it’ll become something that I continue beyond this semester. I pride myself on Umaine hockey and I hope to inspire others to start something similar to my blog. Plus this will give the experience towards what real news media uses for publishing content.
How can I get in contact with you?
You can email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can tweet at me personally: @aquirko
Or tweet at my radio station (I’m connected to it): @sportsWMEB
You can also comment on any of the posts