Each year 16 of the nation’s top Collegiate Hockey Programs square off, all with the same goal to reach the NCAA Frozen Four. This years tournament’s First and Second rounds of the East Region were held at the Times Union Center, in Albany New York. Quinnipiac, the top overall seed in the tournament, was first tested by Rochester Institute of Technology and Yale saw UMass-Lowell as well in the first round. Both Quinnipiac and UMass-Lowell came out victorious on Saturday, which set up a one seed vs. a two seed with the winner heading Tampa for the Frozen Four. Quinnipiac was too fast and too strong and out-performed UMass-Lowell by a score of 4-0, which clinched their ticket to the 2016 NCAA Frozen Four.
I was honored to be given the opportunity to volunteer for this year’s tournament. To represent a organization like the NCAA is always good, as you gain experience and the possibility of meeting the “right” person or contact. Although Canisius was not a member of this year’s tournament, I still represented the College with integrity and professionalism. Whenever someone asked where I was from, I proudly stated that I was happy to be a Golden Griffin, My initial duties for the tournament were to distribute credentials for the Media, as well as be a mic-runner during the post-game press conferences. Because of the national attention this tournament receives, organizations like ESPN, Fox Sports, and NBC Sports all were there to cover the tournament. Professional Scouts from the NHL all wanted to catch a glimpse of the talent these four teams produced on the ice, as one day maybe a student-athlete would represent their team. I did not want to limit my responsibilities to just the stated above, I wanted to gain as much experience as I could. I started to ask Edward Krajewski, Assistant Commissioner of the ECAC Hockey League, and Eric McDowell, Union College’s Sports Information Director, if there was any other assignments that I could assist with. They directed me to the Media Room, where I assisted individuals as they typed up game notes, box scores, and interview quotes.
This experience was amazing in many ways. Not many people get to help the “Behind the Scenes” functions of what it takes to make everything that is part of the game run so smoothly. Everyone sees the action on the ice, but they do see what it took to get the game set up. This all would not have been possible if it wasn’t for the Canisius’ Sports Administration program. I was asked to volunteer for this tournament because Canisius selected me to represent them at the MAAC Championships earlier this month. I was asked to come back and work this tournament and did not hesitate to say yes. The NCAA is an organization that I hope, one day, I will be able to represent every day.