The Sacred Heart men's ice hockey team will play the first outdoor game in program history at Rentschler Field in East Hartford on Sunday, February 13, 2011 as part of the “Whalers Hockey Fest”. The Pioneers will face off against UConn in an Atlantic Hockey conference game during the historic event. The announcement was made today as part of the unveiling of the event by Whalers Sports and Entertainment.
“Participation in the Hockey Fest program brings with it a wonderful opportunity to advance the image and reputation of the Sacred Heart University men's ice hockey program,” said Executive Director of Athletics Don Cook. “Given the chance to showcase our program on center stage at the Rentschler Field's new outdoor hockey arena against state rival UConn is an ideal way to advance the solid reputation Sacred Heart already enjoys in men's ice hockey.”
The 10-day Whalers Hockey Fest could include as many as 20 outdoor games between professional, college, prep school and high school teams at Rentschler Field. Rentschler Field is the 40,000-seat home of the UConn football team. It is owned by the State of Connecticut and managed by Bushnell Management Services.
“Any time we can compete alongside the State's flag ship institution in an atmosphere that promotes only the best in a college hockey experience is a win-win for everyone,” said Cook. “We are thrilled to be partners with UConn in this special event.”
Pioneer head coach C.J. Marottolo is also excited for the event, “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I think our student-athletes, alumni, fans, and coaching staff are all thrilled to take part in. Any of us who love the game of hockey grew up playing outside on the ponds. I think the opportunity to play outdoors will bring back the childhood memories of falling in love with the game for everyone. I would like to thank Howard Baldwin and UConn for inviting us to take part in such a wonderful event.”
Festival Tickets for the entire event can be purchased online at WhalersSports.com. Information on individual game tickets will be forthcoming.