He shoots, he scores!

Saturday night brought the second of two games in which our great friends JoAnn and Brenda had given us extra tickets they’d earned as season-ticket holders for the Syracuse Crunch.

My dear wife Karen and I arrived to the Onondaga County War Memorial a bit late for the American Hockey League action against the hometown squad’s hot rival, the Utica Comets. We’d come straight from the Carrier Dome, where we’d just watched the Syracuse Orange’s brave but futile battle against Clemson, the top-ranked college football team in the country.

As we settled into our seats next to Robin and her husband Michael, whom Karen had given the other two tickets to the day prior, she explained how the Utica squad had outshot the Crunch throughout the first period, but it had remained scoreless.

A tight game it was, entering the last period tied 1-1, with Syracuse returning to shoot at the goal right in front of us.

The winning goal for the Syracuse Crunch.

The winning goal for the Syracuse Crunch, scored by Matt Peca.

With the Crunch on a power play, Matt Peca unleashed a wrist shot that beat goalie Joe Cannata. I was ready with my iPhone 6. That’s the puck in the goal at the bottom right of the photo.

Hover over any gallery photo for a description. Click on the right photograph in any gallery for an enlarged slide show.

That goal stood up for the last 19 minutes for a 2-1 Crunch win.

Talk about great seats. Thank you, Brenda and JoAnn.

I flinched a time or two as pucks whizzed past the net and smacked into the glass a couple rows in front of us. Off to our right, one fan tapped hard on the glass as players skirmished on the other side in front of him. I thought that was bad form.

How close to sports action have you sat? Would a puck crashing into clear plexiglass make you cringe? Do you think fans should whack the glass as the game progresses?

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18 thoughts on “He shoots, he scores!

  1. I never miss a Saturday home game. We have season tickets for section 5 crunch club row a seats 5-8 dead center ice first row behind the concrete wall. Sitting close for hockey is t ideal in my opinion. If rather sit high and see all the action. However I have an issue. Utica in no way game into Saturday’s game “hot” they were coming off a 6-3 lose and had dropped 4 of their last 6 games. But other than that it was a great game. Friday’s was special too

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    • Sittiing up high is good for the watching the flow, I agree, Ben. Once in a while, up close is great for a taste of the zing! of the game. No matter the records, Utica and Syracuse will always be hot rivals, I think, because of the proximity of the cities. That was the point I was trying to make. Enjoy your Crunch Club seats. I hope they return to the form of two seasons ago, when they made the Calder Cup finals. 🙂

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  2. Wow, this all sounds very exciting, except for the pucks flying by. As far as the person banging on the glass, that does seem like bad behavior. What was the point? To get the guys to stop their skirmish. Isn’t that part of the fun of going to an ice hockey game, is to see the teams beat the crap out of each other?

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  3. Very cool. Love the photos. Last hockey game I went to, the puck made me flinch more than once. And a fight broke out two rows in front of us . . . two women.

    I once sat in the first row above the Mariner’s dugout, that was a cool experience. It was prior to the magical 2001 season. 🙂

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    • Fighting in the stands at a sports event sucks, Tracy. It tends to spread out from the center as people pick sides or try to break it up and get socked in the process! So dangerous.

      That must have been fun, rooting on the magical Mariners from so close, my friend!

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      • Yes, fighting at sporting events does suck. We had to move away from the mayhem to see the reason we came in the first place.

        Being that close to the dugout was wonderful. And it was when Lou Piniella was still the “Skipper”. Sigh.

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  4. UMaine Hockey games are a blast to attend. It’s such a small arena, so you always feels close to the action. And the student section is so loud and out of control
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  5. great pics, mark. i love the action and i always flinch too, though usually not close enough to actually be in danger. i’ve seen a lot of more of the fans smacking the glass and it always scares me a bit. how fun for you and what generous friends you have )

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    • Hockey is a sport that’s way more fun live than on TV, Beth, from up close or the last seat in the arena. Maybe not the stadium, though, but pretty close! Yes, JoAnn and Brenda are the greatest to my dear wife Karen and I, always. 🙂

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