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Ice Hockey Club Reunites at Belmont Arena

Ice Hockey Reunion

Front row, from left: Rob Carey ’89, Mike Tomera ’90, Bobby Duke ’83, Jon Kirsch ’84, John Strachan ’88 (goalie, standing), Dan Powell ’90, Larry Montebell M’76, Dave Troy ’77, Paul Bucher ’81, and Bill Capone ’91. Second row: Bob (Grimo) Grimes ’87, Jeff Hunt, Marty Sanders, Lloyd Cravener ’85, Darren Marynchak ’87, Craig Clontz, John O’Leary ’87, Tom Nagy ’85, Wendell Tyler, Eric Seppi, Dan (Cujo) Cuno ’88, Chris Brown ’89, Andy Taymans ’82, Scott Delaney ’85, and Jim Hickey ’81. Those absent from the photo who played the previous night: Todd Bunting ’77, Bob Maguire ’78, Brian Inners ’83, Robert Clark ’88, M’92, D’06, Mike Heilman ’95, and Gary Montebell.

Before construction of the Indiana Ice Center along East Pike in the 1990s, the Belmont Complex in West Kittanning had been home to the IUP Ice Hockey Club since the program’s beginning in 1973. “Members spent many a Co-op van trip on Route 422 as they made the 30-mile trip back and forth for practices and games,” Paul Bucher ’81 wrote.

Over two days last April, more than 30 former club members gathered at the Belmont Arena for an informal reunion and some friendly competition. Players from the ’70s and early ’80s defeated the team from the late ’80s, but “the scores didn’t matter as much as the camaraderie, which was far more evident than the hockey skills,” Paul said.

In an e-mail after the reunion, John O’Leary ’87, captain of the ’85 team, wrote to fellow members, “I feel blessed to be a part of this whole crew. I hated to leave it all on Saturday.”

After the success of the first event, the group plans to get together each spring. For more information, contact Paul at paul@thebuchers.com.