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BC Icemen

1997 - 2002

United Hockey League (UHL)

Broome County Veterans Memorial Arena

BC Icemen Loaded With Weekend Dates

June 11, 1998

By Charlie Jaworski, executive sports editor

Press & Sun Bulletin

The BC Icemen have more weekend home games on their 1998-99 United Hockey League schedule compared to last season, and there’s a Monday matinee.

The Icemen will open their second 74-game UHL season in Utica Friday, Oct. 16, then will host the new Utica team, the Mohawk Valley Prowlers, the next night at the Broome County Veterans Memorial Area.

They’re two of 17 games against division rivals Mohawk Valley. The Icemen play their East Division foes Asheville and Winston-Salem, North Carolina 12 times each. They will play the other seven UHL teams between 3-6 times. 

Icemen general manager Patrick Snyder said it’s a more sensible schedule—“on the road, it’s 10 times better,” he said—compared to the 11th-hour version built last year when Binghamton was a late entry into the league. It followed closely the bolting of the New York Rangers, moving their American Hockey League farm club to Hartford after seven years in Binghamton.

There is not one weekend home game until Wednesday, Jan. 20, with the exception of Thanksgiving night and a Christmas-week Wednesday.

The Nov. 26 game against Asheville, the old Brantford, Ontario franchise, continues a long-standing Binghamton tradition—24 of 25 years there’s been a pro hockey game at the Arena on Thanksgiving.

Perhaps a new tradition will be started with a 3 p.m. Monday President’s Day game Feb. 15, against Madison.

The Icemen will play one more game on Wednesday, one more on Friday and two more Saturdays than last season; they’ll play two Tuesday games, whereas they had seven at-home last season.

Snyder figures more weekend dates will translate into better attendance—the team averages 3,023 last season, fourth-best in the 10-team UHL.

Still, the average was the lowest in the 25-year history of Binghamton pro hockey, largely because of a drop in class from the AHL, the principle feeder system for the National Hockey League.

The only downside to the schedule for the upbeat Snyder was no New Year’s Eve home game for a second consecutive season. There had been Dec. 31 games for 22 consecutive years prior to last season.

 
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