Friday, March 27, 2009

TUMHB E-Mail Interview: Senior, Alan Thompson

I've been fortunate enough to be able to play some hockey with Gilford, New Hampshire native, Alan Thompson. While well down the road to recovery from his latest round of surgery to repair knee injuries incurred back in high school, Thomspon stopped by his local hockey rink for some stick-and-puck to get some ice time in and you could immediately see what the UNH forward brought to the game. Though he was taking it easy you could see Alan's smooth, quick stride. His heads-up play, tape-to-tape passes and, on my end, his creative and pin-point accurate shooting that has a tendency to find some holes in your goaltending. The forward was extremely solid defensively and it was the rare moment when someone there could get the puck by him or take it away from him before he had a good chance on net or found a linemate for the pass.

This was towards the end of nearly four years of injury and recovery that has all paid off for this New Hampshire native as evidenced, as if you need more proof, from this excerpt from Hockey East Online.
"UNH senior forward Alan Thompson (Gilford, N.H.) earned the 2009 Turfer Athletic Award, presented annually to an individual, coach or team who best represents the core values of Turfer Athletic; tenacity, commitment and innovation. Thompson has recovered from several career threatening injuries, has remained a tireless worker and positive contributor for the Wildcats playing in 31 games overall this season, after playing in only seven games in his first three seasons"
Scoring three goals and five assists this season, Alan Thompson.

(TUMHBG) Welcome to the blog, Alan. You've got to be happy with the season you had personally and you were award the 2009 Turfer Athletic Award for tenacity, commitment and innovation - that's got to mean a lot to you for all of the hard work you've put in over the years.

(A.THOMPSON) I am honored to be named the first recipient of the Turfer Award and I am flattered that the league chose me as the recipient, as I'm sure there are a lot of nominees in our league that have gone through some tough times in the past and persevered just as I have. Just shows, although a tremendous cliche, that hard work and 100% effort in anything you do will be rewarding in the long run. I feel very lucky and thankful to still have the opportunity to play at a high level after all the surgeries and would like to thank all of my teammates, coaches, and fans for never giving up on me.

(TUMHBG) You'll be playing in your first NCAA Tournament game. Your thoughts?

(A.THOMPSON) Very excited to be playing in the NCAA tournament and I am looking forward to helping our team get a hard fought victory over a tough North Dakota team. The last week or so was very frustrating after the losses to BC and I am looking forward to getting our first NCAA win in Manchester.

(TUMHBG) Describe your experience at UNH thus far.

(A.THOMPSON) My experience at UNH was not how I planned (spending three years recovering from injuries), however, still very enjoyable both around campus, in the classroom, the nightlife, and in the rink (especially this season). I met a lot of interesting and exciting people and have made many lifelong friends. Being injured for three years allowed me a unique opportunity as a player to experience the social aspect of college maybe more than some of my teammates, which is one positive that I can pull out of the injuries. Although I would have rather spent the time playing and in the lineup all four years, I did meet a lot of people and experience many things that I might not have experienced had I been in the lineup every night for four years.

(TUMHBG) You've got one year of eligibility left. What are your plans for the future?

(A.THOMPSON) I am still undecided about next year and will have a meeting with the coaching staff and talk with my parents after this season and see what options are available and what I want to do. I may play here again next year, I may try to play professionally somewhere, or I may hang em up and head into the real world.

(TUMHBG) As the master of injury recovery I have to ask - I just injured my knee - any advice for helping me get through the recovery process?

(A.THOMPSON) My advice to you for a successful recovery is to not rush the healing process (something I did much to often) and do a lot of hamstring and quadriceps strengthening.

(TUMHBG) Will do. So, anything you'd like to say to Wildcat Nation?

(A.THOMPSON) To Wildcat Nation: Thanks for your support throughout the years and I look forward to seeing you in Manchester for a well fought victory against North Dakota and BU/Ohio St.

Thanks, Alan. It's been great watching you out there and even better playing against you at stick-and-puck a while back, I hope to see you out there again someday!

Best of luck to you!

Go 'Cats!


Blogger UNHBulls said...

Great interview, I hope he comes back. Alan is definitely a fan favorite.

Mar 28, 2009, 11:39:00 AM  
Blogger UNHBulls said...

Wow. That's all I have to say about that game. It's looking like it'll be BU. I think it will be very fitting for UNH to have to beat BU to advance because there were both regular season and HE tourney champs. Lets do this and even the season series!!!

Mar 28, 2009, 7:43:00 PM  

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