On Wednesday some of the Boston Bruins took to the field at LeLacheur Park in Lowell, Massachusetts to take part in Milan Lucic’s third annual Rock and Jock Softball Game. The game was first established in 2010 when Milan Lucic decided it was prime time for him to start giving more back to the community. The game benefits NMTW’s Community Credit Union‘s community through the Celebrities for Charity Foundation. The employees of NMTW in the past year volunteered more than 5,000 hours of community service to over 100 different organizations, Rock and Jock Softball being one of them. Lucic partnered with NMTW, his teammates, media personnel and fans to make this event such a fun-filled event that people from all over look forward to each year.
This year alone people traveled from states like Illinois and Maine, just to cheer on their favorite men in black and gold. People started lining up for the event as early as 1:00 in the afternoon(doors opened at 6:00pm), to ensure they got the ‘perfect’ seats to meet the players. (And people say Boston doesn’t have the best fans?) This year, the roster looked a little different than it has in the past, sporting some new faces. For the jocks:
#17 Milan Lucic
#77 Ray Bourque
#29 Jay Miller
#44 Dennis Seidenberg
#7 Jeff Juden (Former MLB Pitcher)
#63 Joe Andruzzi (Former New England Patriot)
#40 Tuukka Rask
#11 Kenlyn Rowe (New England Revolution)
#55 Johnny Boychuk
#5 Colleen Coyne (US Women’s Hockey Gold Medalist)
#27 Mike Mottau
Unfortunately, Ray Bourque was unable to make it due to a family issue he had to attend to, but former boxer Micky Ward filled in as the third base coach.
While for the ‘Rocks’ we saw members like:
Ramiro Torres (US Radio Network)
James Massone (Former Voice Contestant)
Santiago Deolo (JAM’N 94.5)
Chris Lambert (meteorologist, Channel 7 News)
Tim Caputo (7News reporter)
David Wade (WBZ-TV News)
Joe Haggerty (Comcast SportsNet New England Writer)
Joe Amorosino (7News Sports Director)
Dylan Dreyer (7News Meteorologist)
Fred Toucher (WBCN “Toucher&Rich Show”)
Rich Shertenleib (WBCN “Toucher&Rich Show”)
Karson Tager (Radio Co-Host Mix 104.1)
Kendra Petrone (KISS 108 Executive Producer)
Danny Smith (writer and voice actor, famously known for Family Guy)
With big names like that, how can you NOT want to attend? This year, the stakes were raised as the Rocks looked to take their first victory from the Jocks, taking control of the Rock & Jock trophy. After a quick first inning, it seemed that could be the case as the Rocks jumped to an early one-run lead that lasted through the third inning. Prior to the game Ariana and myself had asked defensemen Johnny Boychuk and goaltender Tuukka Rask if they were going to hit home runs, and they assured us that they would ‘try.’ Although, Johnny was concerned because the distance to hit a home run was “pretty far.” However, when both men got up to bat, they were able to each hit the ball easily to the outfield, just not quite far enough for a homer. Through six innings the game remained tied at one run a piece, the turf seeming to play a bit of a roll as Mike Mottau and Johnny B among a couple other players ‘slipped up’ in making a few key plays, but it was all in fun as each got up with big smiles on their face. (So that’s why baseball players wear cleats…) It wouldn’t be until the Jocks at bat in the seventh inning that New England Revolution player Kelyn Rowe would score the game-winning run off of a base hit, giving the Jocks their third-straight Rock&Jock victory.
Part way through the game, Milan took a moment to thank everyone who came out to the game and mentioned to every reporter he spoke to that he couldn’t believe the amount of support that his event got. In his statement to the fans in the game program he wrote:
“The enthusiasm of the fans constantly amazes me and truly makes this event memorable for all. On behalf of these charitable organizations, I would like to express my gratitude for your support and I hope everyone enjoys the game.”
This message was reiterated on many occasions and watching the video playback from the BruinsTV, it is easy to see all of the support fans have for the Bruins. As Lucic put it;
“You look behind us and you see all the black and gold and they’re all amped up for a charity softball game and you can tell they can’t wait for us to get going again on the ice.”
Rask, who participated in the event last summer, told Bruins reporter Joe Gallagher that he enjoyed the opportunity to compete in front of the fans without being too serious, and mentioned how it always helps to support a cause when the event is fun. While defenseman Johnny Boychuk explained why he among other teammates step up and help out in these situations:
“Anytime a teammate wants you to do something for a charity event you’re more than willing to do it and it just shows what kind of guys we have in the locker room and they stick together no matter what.” (via Bruins News)
Once again the mention of ‘togetherness’ and ‘team unity’ comes into play. There is no question the Boston Bruins are truly a ‘family’ on and off the ice, willing to help each other out on any given day in any situation.
Feel free to take a look through our photographs that were taken before and during the game and leave us a comment! Also, be sure to check out the video featuring Bish on the Bruins website and see if you can find Ariana and myself among the fans.