Lenes, Hogeboom, Walker on All-Star experience.

Because you can’t get enough ECHL All-Star Game material, here’s what David Walker, Greg Hogeboom and Peter Lenes had to say after last night’s game … also, interesting to note that Judd Blackwater was traded from Stockton to Alaska for Colin Hemingway, a day after Blackwater appeared in the all-star game. 

Greg Hogeboom:

I was just out here to have some fun and enjoy some time
off. To work hard and try to put together some nice plays out there. I didn’t manage to
finish off any nice plays, but that happens some times.

(Compare to your experience in the 2006 All-Star Game?) There were more fans here, a little louder this time, that’s about it.

(How much were you aware of scouts being in attendance?) Not really. I’m a little bit of an older guy. I
think iwas the second oldest guy here. I’ve been around a little longer. I
think they’re looking for some of the younger guys. As you saw, there’s a lot
of talented players.

(Was getting to know some of your opponents the big highlight?) It’s definitely good to meet some of the guys you play
against. For sure.

Peter Lenes:

“For the three Reign guys, it’s a special place. It gave a lot of
guys a different look at what southern California is, how the fans are here.”

(Were you hoping to get one last shot during your last shift in overtime?) Yeah, you know, you
always want – I feel I had an opportunity. I went the wrong way on one, that
could have been an overtime goal.

(How much were you aware of scouts being in attendance?) I think there’s someone always watching.
Going to the game, extra tension, you just want to do what you do. They
stressed not doing anything out of the ordinary that you woulnd’t do in a
normal game because there are scouts, an it’s an all-star game. they talked a
lot about it being a prospects game with 11 rookies on each team. it was more
of a prospects game, trying to get exposure. You try to do what you do and not
get out of that mold.

(What’s it like not being able to hit?) It’s tough the first period.
They tell you to play hard, but you’re not trying to hurt anyone. In the first
period it was a little choppy and people were trying to figure out how the game
was going to go.

(Who specifically talked to you?) Coaches, and then the guys from the league come in and talk
to you, tell you what’s going on. I don’t think they were happy with how the
game went last year.

David Walker: 

It was a typical all-star game, back and forth, lots of
goals. You want to win every game, but it’s for the fans, a chance for guys to
showcase themselves.

(Did it play more like a real game in overtime?) Definitely toward the end of the game, both teams got a little
more game-like, knowing that there’s a win on the line. Guys take a lot of
pride, both conferences take pride in winning that. Bragging rights for the
rest of the year – each conference battles back and forth, which conference is better
every year.

(What’s it like not being able to hit?) I guess it’s like playing hockey in Europe. That’s typical
of an all-star game. I know they didn’t want something like that (hitting).
It’s hard to change someone’s thought process as a player — you don’t want to
hurt someone, cost them a couple games at the end of the year. It sucks to
lose, especially for our three guys from Ontario, it’s another one-goal loss
for us.

(What was your goal in the game?) I just tried to have fun. I’m 9, 10 years older than some of
those guys out there. For me it wasn’t about trying to showcase myself, get a
contract, this is something that I took a lot of pride in — representing our
team, our organization, and soaking it all in. I don’t know how many years I
have left, so I’ll look back in five, six years and have a lot of good
memories.

This entry was posted in Ontario Reign/ECHL and tagged , , , by J.P. Hoornstra. Bookmark the permalink.

About J.P. Hoornstra

J.P. Hoornstra covers the Dodgers, Angels and Major League Baseball for the Los Angeles Daily News, Long Beach Press-Telegram, Torrance Daily Breeze, San Gabriel Valley Tribune, Pasadena Star-News, San Bernardino Sun, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, Whittier Daily News and Redlands Daily Facts. Before taking the beat in 2012, J.P. covered the NHL for four years. UCLA gave him a degree once upon a time; when he graduated on schedule, he missed getting Arnold Schwarzenegger's autograph on his diploma by five months.