Hockey players

Mike Foster ’08 of Pembroke, N.H., left, and John-Henry Spezzaferri ’08 of Winchester, Mass., want Saint Joseph’s hockey fans to come see the team play. This season’s first home game is Sunday, Dec. 9, at 3 p.m. at Bridgton Academy, which is the St. Joe’s home rink.

In the last four years, Mike Foster and John-Henry Spezzaferri have helped to transform the hockey club. Joined by 22 other dedicated and talented hockey players, they hope they will be unbeatable this year. They say hockey has found its place here.

The hockey club has been reborn. What happened?

Our freshmen year in 2004 we were smoked (0-3), and after that everyone quit. The incarnation of the new hockey club started after that.

What's this season going to be like?

We had tryouts in October and had to turn some people down. We've got a strong team already and a lot of new talent with this new class. We'll be playing with the North Eastern Collegiate Hockey Association (NECHA) now, so we'll have games all over Maine and New England.

What's it like being in the Saint Joseph's hockey club?

It's nice to be on this team. I never thought I would answer this question seriously. The first year was excruciating to play. Now we're a hockey team that can do some real damage. At first we were playing random leagues. We were alongside the beer leagues - older guys messing around with sticks and a puck and cracking open a six-pack. But now we're a real team.

Do you have a tough practice schedule?

Our workout and practice schedule are less high-pressure than other teams. We enjoy ourselves, and, at the same time, the skill levels of the guys on the team get higher and higher.

How are your teammates?

Some of us live in a suite together. We hang outside of hockey and have a good time while we are together. On the bus ride up to Bridgton for practice, there's always team bonding. On the way back from games, if we weren't smoked (and we usually aren't anymore), we have some sing-a-longs. "Turn the Page" by Bob Seger is a favorite.

What's your fan base like?

We have a group of mostly female spectators. They've made us signs and carry flags to support us. With the new league we're in, we'll be getting some home games. Home means Bridgton, but it's closer (than Winslow), and we'd love to have people come out and enjoy the Monks hockey experience.

What are you working on for this season?

We're trying to get a fan bus up to Bridgton, and are thinking of having a booster club. Come out and give us support. It's been a while since we've had a home game.

What will life after Saint Joseph's hockey be like?

After college I'll definitely play more hockey. I'd love to coach a youth hockey team, especially if I have kids of my own. I'll live through them and probably join a beer league eventually.
Your coach has been with you for three seasons.

What can you say about him?

Coach Kevin Fahey has done great things for us. He got us to where we are today. He treats us like we're a varsity team, and it's nice to have that kind of support. He's a big part of us.