The Keene State College men’s hockey team added seven new players to the roster this year. One of those players is defenseman Joe Meloni, who hails from Falmouth, MA, but Meloni isn’t the only Falmouth native. Senior Trevor Theroux has been playing with the Owls for three years.
Head Coach Bobby Rodrigue had nothing but good things to say about both of his players from Falmouth.
“Trevor is a very positive kid. He’s a great team guy and he brings a deceptive level of speed to the ice,” Rodrigue said.
When asked about Meloni, he said, “Joe is a pretty rugged kid, so we expect that he is going to be a pretty tough defenseman for other people to play against.”
Having someone you know on the team definitely takes away some of the nerves one might have when joining a new team. “He [coach] introduced me to everyone, and I had a little buffer zone in there so I wasn’t all on my own. It’s nice to have a buddy looking after you,” Meloni said.
Meloni and Theroux grew up playing hockey together in Falmouth and they both agreed there is a certain culture around the sport in their hometown. “I definitely learned a lot about character more than anything,” Meloni said.
Theroux said some of his closest friends are the ones he has made through playing hockey in Falmouth, and many of them still remain close to this day.
Rodrigue agreed that growing up in a town with a good youth hockey program is critical.
“Sometimes you see kids who seem skilled, but maybe don’t think of the game very well or can’t be complete players. Obviously our lives here, as coaches, are easier here the better prepared the kids are when they arrive,” Rodrigue said.
Theroux talked about how having Meloni join the team boosts his confidence. He discussed how having someone that he has previously played with, on the same team for seven years, gives him a boost. “It brings up the confidence level a little bit knowing the chemistry level is there,” said Theroux.
Cyrus Wickersham is a close friend of both Meloni and Theroux. They all played on the Falmouth High School Varsity Hockey team until 2013, when they all graduated in the same class. He has been a close friend to them since their youth hockey days back in mites and squirts (youth hockey).
When asked about each player’s biggest asset, Wickersham cited Meloni’s tremendous strength on the ice and Theroux’s tenacity. “You don’t realize how hard Joe hits you until it is too late,” said Wickersham. Wickersham also mentioned how Theroux always gives 100 percent whenever he is on the ice and never quits.
The “Falmouth Connection” is not only going to have a positive effect on the team, but on both Meloni and Theroux’s families as well. Theroux mentioned how being on the same team as Meloni will allow both of their families to attend games together.
Austin Sanidas can be contacted at Asanidas@kscequinox.com