Mass. College Hockey: Eight Hockey East Teams To Take Part In Frozen Fenway 2014

By Matt Noonan 

There’ll be hockey at Fenway Park next January as eight Hockey East teams will take part in two doubleheaders at Frozen Fenway 2014, according to the league’s press release this afternoon.

“We are excited about the return of hockey to Fenway,” said Hockey East commissioner Joe Bertagna in a statement. “We are particularly pleased that with these two doubleheaders, all of our men’s programs will have had the opportunity to experience Frozen Fenway, including the University of Notre Dame, our newest member.”

Hockey East Logo

Photo Courtesy of Wikipedia.com

The first doubleheader will occur on Saturday, January 4, 2014, as Merrimack College will face-off against Providence College, which will be followed by Notre Dame and Boston College.

UMass Lowell and Northeastern University will skate against each other in the first game the following Saturday, January 11, before Boston University and Maine face-off in the second game.

Boston’s Mayor Tom Menino, who was quoted in the release, expressed his excitement for the return of Frozen Fenway by saying, “Last year, more than 90,000 people came to Fenway Park to watch college or high school hockey or enjoy free public skating.”

Excluding the eight hockey games, there will be two free public skating days for the City of Boston residents, too.

Game times and ticket information for both doubleheaders will be announced at a later date.

For more information on the Hockey East – HOP HERE

Wheaton College To The Texas Rangers: Jared Barnes’ Baseball Journey

Photo Credit: NewEraMLB.blogspot.com

By NoontimeSports.com 

Jared Barnes loves baseball, and like many, he’s pursuing a dream of working in the sport he’s always loved.

Noontime Sports caught up with the former Wheaton College alum recently to talk about his love for the sport, as well as his current journey, which has landed him in Texas with the Rangers as baseball operations intern. Jared was so kind to share his story, along with provide insight on what it’s like to work in baseball, too.

1.) Going way back, way before Wheaton College, what was one of your first and fondest memories about the sport of baseball? Was there a moment from your youth that sticks out?

The first baseball memory that comes to mind for me is always my first trip to Fenway Park with my Dad in July of 1994. We sat five rows directly behind the Red Sox on-deck circle and it was my first real exposure to the game at the highest level. Ever since I think anyone who knows me can attest that baseball has been a pretty big part of my life.

It had always been my hope while growing up to play professionally, but unfortunately for many of us the game ends before reaching that point. Yet, a lot of my family memories are focused around the game of baseball. Family vacations were always spent at my baseball tournaments, and my Dad always devoted a lot of time to helping me workout and get better in the offseason. I had a lot of great experiences playing the game and was able to do so thanks to many sacrifices my parents made.

2.) What are some of your favorite memories about playing baseball for Wheaton College? Correct me if I’m wrong, but you were on the team that made it to the World Series in ’06, right?

I was a freshman on the 2006 team that went to the Division III World Series, and baseball-wise it’s tough to top that week. It’s an experience I will never forget and I was really fortunate to come in as a freshman and be a part of that team’s success. That’s something I will always be able to say I was a part of and is pretty special to me. It brought back a lot of memories watching Wheaton’s run to the national title game again this season, and was a really proud moment for a lot of the alums of the program.

Looking back though a lot of my favorite memories are the day-to-day occurrences that are a part of building a team and an identity each year. The bus rides, early morning sprint workouts, and lifelong friendships I formed with teammates are the special aspects of being a student-athlete, and I think anyone that played a collegiate sport misses some of that every day once it’s over.

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POLL: Will You Cheer For Kevin Youkilis?

Will you be cheering or booing Kevin Youkilis on Monday at Fenway Park? (Photo Credit: Matt Noonan for Noontime Sports)

By NoontimeSports.com 

The Boston Red Sox return home to Fenway Park on Monday, and will begin a four-game series with the Chicago White Sox.

Don’t consider this a regular season series because Bostonians and New Englanders will be forced to watch their team’s former first and third basemen, Kevin Youkilis, sporting black and white instead of red and white.

So, we’re curious… will you be cheering for Youk or booing him?

Don’t worry… we won’t share this with Mr. Bobby Valentine, we promise, but we’d like to know how you’ll react to Mr. Youkilis once his name is announced over the public address system.

Answer our poll questions below and feel free to leave comments, too!

Daily Noontime – May 25, 2012

Jon Lester will be on the bump Friday for the Boston Red Sox! (Photo Credit: Chowdaheadz.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

Happy Friday to everyone, and welcome into the final Daily Noontime of the week! Let’s kick-off Memorial Day Weekend with some news and headlines!

* The Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays will begin their three-game series on Friday at Fenway Park – Jon Lester opposes Alex Cobb – first pitch is scheduled for 7:10PM.

* According to various reports – Bobby Valentine strongly believes that if the Sox continue to play the way they’ve played the past 20 games, they’ll win the championship. Boston is 18-12 since blowing a nine run lead to the New York Yankees on April 21, which is the third best record in the American League behind Baltimore (20-10) and Tampa Bay (19-11).  If the Sox continue on this particular path, they’d finish their current campaign with 93 wins.

* The Boston Celtics and Philadelphia 76ers will conclude their Eastern Conference semi-final series on Saturday at 8PM at the TD Garden. Boston has won three of five meetings against Philadelphia in the seventh game dating back to 1965.

* Sources confirmed on Thursday that Avery Bradley will need shoulder surgery to repair “small tears that have compromised the structure of his ailing left shoulder.”

Daily Noontime – May 10, 2012

Josh Beckett made headlines on Wednesday for his golf outing last week, while nursing an injury! (Photo Credit: Cleveland.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s Thursday, which means the weekend is right around the corner. And while we anxiously await for Friday, let’s jumpstart this particular day with some headlines and news.

* Despite tying the game in the third inning, Kansas City retained the lead with one run in the fourth, which helped the Royals defeat the Boston Red Sox, 4-3. Jon Lester earned his third loss of the season, while Adrian Gonzalez registered his 19th RBI of the season.

* Boston will return to Fenway Park on Thursday, and attempt to earn their second win in May against the Cleveland Indians. The Sox have only won win in the current month, which was against the Royals on Monday, but have lost seven of their last eight contests.

* According to reports – Josh Beckett, who is scheduled to pitch the first game against the Indians in Boston, supposedly spent an off day last week playing golf while nursing a lat muscle. Beckett did not appear in Sunday’s 17 inning contest against Baltimore due to his “injury,” and hasn’t appeared on the bump since April 29, against the Chicago White Sox.

* The Boston Celtics will attempt to end their first round series against the Atlanta Hawks on Thursday at the TD Garden. Boston has a 3-2 advantage, and has won two out of three games at home.

* Finally, Hawks owner Michael Gearon Jr. told the Atlanta Journal Constitution that Kevin Garnett is the dirtiest player in league. He also claimed that the Celtics are an old team, too.

Daily Noontime – April 23, 2012

The Boston Bruins forced a Game Seven on Wednesday by defeating the Washington Capitals on Sunday, 4-3 (OT)! (Photo Credit: SportsFanLive.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s a brand new week, which means we need to kick-start it with some news and headlines from the sports universe in Massachusetts…Boston!

* There will be a Game Seven on Wednesday, as the Boston Bruins won their second overtime contest against the Washington Capitals on Sunday, 4-3. Tyler Seguin registered the game-winning goal and assist, while Tim Thomas saved 36 of 39 shots between the pipes.

* Boston and Washington will complete their Eastern Conference quarterfinals series on Wednesday at the TD Garden – time is TBD.

* The Boston Red Sox third contest with the New York Yankees was postponed on Sunday due to heavy rain. The Sox are currently 4-10, and haven’t recorded a win since they defeated the Tampa Bay Rays on Sunday, Apr. 15.

* The Sox will look to snap their five-game losing streak on Monday when they travel to Minnesota for an 8:10pm first pitch – Jon Lester will oppose Jason Marquis.

* Despite no Sunday Night Baseball — former Red Sox manager Terry Francona expressed his thoughts on returning to Fenway Park on Friday to celebrate Fenway Park’s 100th birthday.

* Finally, the Boston Celtics have learned that their first round playoff foe will be the Atlanta Hawks. Boston clinched their third consecutive Atlantic Division last week against Orlando, but currently remain one game behind Atlanta for home-court advantage. Boston has two games remaining in the regular season against Miami and Milwaukee.

Varitek Retirement Announcement Scheduled For Thursday At 5:30PM

By NoontimeSports.com 

WEEI.com’s Alex Speier confirmed on Wednesday that Boston Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek will announce his retirement from the MLB on Thursday, Mar. 1, at 5:30pm eastern. The team’s former captain will address the media on the field at Jet Blue Park.

Varitek spent 15 seasons with the Red Sox, and was a catalyst in helping Boston end their 86-year-old curse in 2004. He won two World Series championships with the ball club, as well as played in 1,546 games. Also, he’s a three-time All-Star, and a proud recipient of a Gold Glove award in 2005.

Daily Noontime – February 28, 2012

Boston's Jason Varitek will announce his retirement on Thursday! (Photo Credit: FanIQ.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s Tuesday, as well as the second to last day of February, too. However, besides counting days on the calendar, here are some headlines and news to kick-start the day.

* Sources confirmed on Monday that Boston Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek will announce his retirement on Thursday. Varitek, who spent his entire big league career behind home plate at Fenway Park, was a major catalyst in helping the club snap an 86-year-old curse and then win another World Series three-years later. The Sox offered Varitek a minor league contract this winter, as well as an invitation to attend camp, but didn’t promise him a position on the major league roster. Boston acquired Kelly Shoppach this offseason, who’ll most likely be behind the plate this season.

* Once Monday’s NHL trade deadline concluded, the Boston Bruins acquired Brian Rolston and Mike Mottau from the New York Islanders, as well as defensemen Greg Zanon from the Minnesota Wild. The Bruins will return to the ice on Tuesday when they host the Ottawa Senators for a 7:00pm face-off.

* The Boston Celtics will begin the second half of their 66-game schedule on Tuesday when they travel to Cleveland to face the Cavaliers. The Green and White haven’t registered a win since Feb. 12 against the Chicago Bulls, and will attempt to pick up a few wins over the next few days against some non-playoff bound squads.

* Finally, the ACC released its 2012 college football schedule on Monday, and Boston College learned that they’ll kick-off their new slate with a game on Sept. 1 against Miami at home. For more information on their schedule – CLICK HERE to see ESPNBoston’s breakdown.

Truck Day Has Come And Gone

Are you ready for some Red Sox baseball? (Photo Credit: FenwayWest.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

Where were you Saturday morning?

Sleeping? Eating? Drinking coffee?

Well, in case you didn’t know, February 11, marks the beginning of yet another baseball season in Boston and New England, as Red Sox fans gathered outside the “America’s Most Beloved Ballpark” to waive goodbye to an 18-wheeler full of bats and balls, which is headed directly to Fort Myers in Florida.

However, while we’re still a few weeks away from the initial start date of the 2012 MLB season, Saturday’s event lifted the spirits of many Bostonians, who’re still mourning the Patriots most recent Super Bowl loss to the New York Giants.

Boston’s pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report on Feb. 19, with their first practice being held on Feb. 21. Also, the Red Sox will play their first preseason contest on March 3, when they face Northeastern University and Boston College.