Home | Classifieds | Place an ad | Obituaries | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Real Estate Search | Subscribe | 928 Media Lab | Contact Us
Chino Valley Review | Chino Valley, Arizona

home : opinions : opinions April 15, 2014


3/27/2013 9:45:00 AM
Growing up with the 'Dogs - not so bad!

Matt Santos
Reporter


I reached a milestone of sorts this weekend.

As the Sundogs 2012- '13 regular season came to an end on Saturday night, it also ended my fifth season working with the team.

For those of you who don't know, during the off-season between the team's championship second year and season three, I became the team's photographer.

Five years and many thousands of photos later, I'm still here, but many Sundog faces have come and gone.

During this time, I have met some pretty interesting folks, some hockey-related, some Tim's Toyota Center-related, and many, many fan-related.

Early on, I got a kick out of one particular family, the Pietroniros. Dad Marco was the team's first head coach and also served as general manager for a time.

The Pietroniros have, I think anyway, four kids, or maybe five, but it seemed like 10.

All boys, and these guys ruled the arena.

I would usually arrive at least a couple of hours before game time and these kids would be everywhere - helping in the locker room, with practice, pre-game warm-ups, everything.

I always enjoyed watching them, thinking "what a great life." Hockey was in their blood and here they are surrounded by it year-round.

They were like Tim's Toyota Center royalty - the princes of the rink.

As the younger guys grew a little older, it was fun watching them strut the arena, cooler than the ice, but still acting like kids in a candy store.

I was talking to someone the other day and I mentioned that I miss seeing how these kids owned the place, and what a great way this was to grow up.

The person I was talking with gave me an odd look and said, "Yeah, like your kid."

And then it hit me - my son literally has grown up at Tim's.

He's 3 years old now, born just before the 2009-10 season started.

He attended his first game that season, only a few months old, and while I haven't actually sat down and counted, I think he's only missed four or five games since.

He can recognize the players from their photos (looking at the computer screen yesterday he said "Good game Brownie"), he knows more about the game than I do, he was able to pronounce "Chipchura" and "Tulupov" before me, and he's developing some pretty mean YMCA and Chicken Dance moves.

I draw the line at Gangnam Style - if he starts, he will be disowned.

If you don't know what I'm talking about, good for you - if you do and you think I'm being too harsh - shame on you, you have no taste and shouldn't be allowed near children.

A few days back, my son was able to sit in on his first official team photo, he's learned to count backwards by screaming "5, 4, 3, 2, 1, LETS GO SUNDOGS!" and he's advancing his vocabulary after watching new coach Scott Muscutt run practice the other day.

He's on a first name basis with several security guards, ushers, and Jimmy Cabral, who serves up a mean chicken strip meal deal (shameless plug in search of free food from Gabby's Kitchen, the official food vendor for the Arizona Sundogs, the CHL affiliate of the Phoenix Coyote's- now a shameless plug in search of a free jersey or any other swag shameless plugs can get ya').

I'm not sure if these qualities are a good thing or not, but one thing for sure. If I stay on with the team, my son's going to have some great memories about growing up around hockey players, having a 5,000 seat arena as his own personal playground, and, after next week, memories of the 'Dogs winning the playoffs.

And hey, how cool is that?











Reader Comments

Posted: Saturday, March 30, 2013
Article comment by: Chuck Finley

Cool kid, cool dad.



Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. The email and phone info you provide will not be visible to the public. Excessively verbose or rambling comments may not be posted. Please keep comments succinct; 200 words or less. Also, in order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit your comment entries to five(5) per day.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search

    Recently Commented     Most Viewed
Feichter, long-time CVHS coach, dies
Tips suggest ways to keep pets safely and at home
Skate park options need public opinions
Obituary: Richard Wayne Feichter
Driver who killed 2 gets 10 months; lawyer argues blood test was illegal

HSE - We want to hear from you
Find more about Weather in Chino Valley, AZ
Click for weather forecast

weather sponsored by



Find It Features Blogs Milestones Extras Submit Other Publications Local Listings
Classifieds | Place an ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Opinions | Real Estate Search | Subscribe | e-newsletter | RSS | Site Map | Contact Us
© Copyright 2014 Prescott Newspapers, Inc. The Chino Valley Review is the information source for Chino Valley area communities in Northern Arizona. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Prescott Newspapers, Inc. Prescott Newspapers Online is a service of Prescott Newspapers, Inc. By using the Site, cvrnews.com ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the Site's terms of use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the Site. Click here to submit your questions, comments or suggestions. Prescott Newspapers Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info Inc.® All Rights Reserved.

Software © 1998-2014 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved