Coast hockey receives national acclaim

          USA HOCKEY MAGAZINE

Colgan Beale of Diamondhead is featured on the latest edition of USA Hockey Magazine.

The Coast has received national media attention for its efforts to rebuild youth hockey in the area.

USA Hockey magazine featured the Mississippi Surge working with young hockey players in its recent edition.

Five-year-old Colgan Beale, a kindergartner at Our Lady Fatima Elementary School in Biloxi, was featured on the cover.

“One of the coaches asked Colgan to autograph it and that was cool,” said Tricia Beale, his mother. The Beales reside in Diamondhead.

Bryce Deano, Christopher Guthrie, Casey Bruce, Luke Wilson, Hunter Wilson, Hunter Moore, Roman Pendleton, Ethan McKinnon and Chris Denton were the other Coast youths featured with Beale in the article written by Leif Skodnick, who works for the Surge.

The Kids First Hockey Program was held at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum in January. Local organizers also teamed up with USA Hockey to host a “Try Hockey For Free” day, as part of Hockey Weekend Across America.

Harry Thompson, Editor-in-chief at USA Hockey Magazine, saw the timing was perfect to profile the Coast hockey and the affects of Hurricane Katrina. The Youth Hockey League is now coming along.

“Hockey is a non-traditional sport on the Coast,” Thompson said. “It has a small, but loyal following. It seemed that hockey went away for a couple of years after Katrina.”

The Surge are in their first year of existence with the Southern Professional Hockey League.

By JAMES JONES – jkjones@sunherald.com
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