View From Section U: Join The Pond Club!

If you’ve been able to navigate the jungle of the internet, filled with too good to be true offers and porn, to find and read Fear The Triangle then you’re a hardcore UMass hockey fan.  And if you’re a hardcore UMass hockey fan you should join the team’s booster organization, the Pond Club.

The Pond Club is of course the fundraising arm of the hockey program, with its mission to help defer some of the costs it takes to compete in an elite level DI hockey conference and give the coaches the tools they need to succeed.  In recent years the Pond Club has, among other things, helped renovate the locker room at the Mullins, bought video equipment, provided a skate sharpener, and funded a weight room for the team.  UMass hockey needs this.  I don’t have to tell you how hard it is for teams in Hockey East to break into the “top 4” of the conference.  Some of this is due to the tradition of teams like Boston College, Boston University, Maine, and UNH.  But, some of this is because those schools have some damn nice facilities, like BU’s Agganis Arena or the renovations currently underway at Alfond in Orono.  Add in improvements to facilities at Lowell and past and future redevelopment of Lawler at Merrimack and it shows that UMass needs help when it comes to keeping up with the competition.  The Mullins Center is a good hockey facility, but it needs almost constant enhancements to keep up with like facilities across the country.

But the Pond Club is more than just writing a check.  It’s a chance to surround yourself with others who care about UMass hockey just as much as you.  Through the Pond Club you’ll meet fellow fans, UMass hockey alumni, hockey parents, coaches, and athletic staff.  And you’ll never know who else you’ll run into as well.  In the past year while attending Pond Club events I’ve had the chance to meet Stanley Cup winner Steve Rooney and US Hockey Hall of Famer John LeClair.  Certainly a big thrill for a big hockey fan.

Of course a lot of this interaction with other UMass hockey fans takes place in the Massachusetts Room between periods of games and other Pond Club events.  Even the lowest level membership in the Pond Club will give you access to the Massachusetts Room to talk about the ongoing game and have a (craft) beer(!) while looking down on ice level or checking out the trophies and pieces of UMass sports history.  Honestly, being able to enjoy the Massachusetts Room is worth the membership price alone.

So if you’re a UMass fan who chooses to come read Fear The Triangle, first of all I thank you immensely.  But please think about extending your support of the team just a little further than showing up to the games, listening to the road trips to Orono on the radio, memorizing all the jersey numbers of the players, and knowing exactly how to solve the team’s power play.  Join the Pond Club and help the Minutemen win while surrounding yourself with others who are just as passionate to see them achieve success.

Dick Baker of the Republican has news that Jeff Teglia is over his bout with the flu and that he and Kevin Boyle will likely see time this weekend.  Coach Cahoon reiterated as much on the weekly radio show.  Also, Danny Hobbs has been skating this week.

Baker also takes a look back at the last time UMass played Bentley, which pretty much put the team over the edge and on the way to the annual second half nosedive.  He says that the Bentley loss was the turning point of the season, but UMass had actually lost three of five leading up and needed the Bentley game to show they weren’t going to swoon like previous teams.  Didn’t happen.  Looking back at my recap from that game, it doesn’t look like a lot of players did well in that one.  So I hope the upperclassmen, from T.J. Syner to Kevin Czepiel (who scored his first career goal against Bentley) have long memories and are out to get some revenge.  But more about Bentley tomorrow.

For those you are just returning to read FTT after the offseason, one of my View From Section U columns during the summer was an open letter to the new marching band director, Timothy Anderson, in support of a hockey band.  I did contact Dr. Anderson and direct him to the letter and he was very cordial and open to exploring the idea of a puck band once he’s settled in Amherst.  I received tremendous feedback from readers regarding the post and so far there are almost 30 co-signers of the letter.  I’d love to be able to followup with Dr. Anderson by printing out and mailing him the post, complete with the co-signees and comments.  So if you support the forming of a hockey band and having a complete college hockey atmosphere in the Mullins Center, please comment or sign the letter (even anonymously) to help show how important this issue is to the UMass hockey fanbase.  Thanks!

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  1. Adam

     /  October 12, 2011

    I’d love to join the Pond Club. But as a college kid with very limited income, there is no way I can pay even the lowest fee. I know we probably aren’t the base they are concerned with but maybe the addition of a $50 student membership would be a good move for them.


    • Certainly it’s very challenging for a college student to have the money available to join the Pond Club and for the most part my post was aimed at non-students who are already investing in money to buy tickets, etc. Although, keep in mind that the lowest level Pond Club membership gives the member and a guest access to the Mass Room between periods. So in actuality if you found a friend to split the membership fee with…

      A student membership level is certainly an interesting idea though and worth exploring.


  2. Patrick

     /  October 12, 2011

    As an avid UMass hockey fan and very proud alum I would love to see the UMass band play at the Mullins Center. I have attended games at Boston College and their band brings energy to the games. I know our band is highly regarded and would help attract fans to the Mullins Center.

    Thanks and go UMass!

    Patrick Class of 2010


    • Thanks Patrick. Hope you don’t mind but I copied your comment onto the Hockey Band post itself.


  3. Anonymous

     /  October 13, 2011

    We dont want that riff raff up in the pond club…



  4. Anonymous

     /  October 13, 2011

    Having the band at games would be great and the right thing to do ,to contuine to move UMASS hockey to another level provided the band was good enough to listen to .. Mr. Anderson make the call


  5. I gave my senior gift to the pond club. Its not much, but I was glad to allocate my gift to the thing that I most fondly remember from UMass. Plus, the gift still counts towards the senior gift goal. Keep this in mind when you get the calls durring your senior year


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