College hockey is a truly special experience in every sense of the word; and, at its essence, are the passion and pride of student sections. This week, we are proud to honor Mitch's Misfits – the longstanding Michigan Tech student group that this week took their spirit to Yost Ice Arena in Ann Arbor – as the WCHA Fans of the Week, Powered by E Group.
More about Mitch's Misfits, from the group's current president, Michigan Tech student Matt Cavender…
Matt Cavender. It's hard for me to place how many Misfits there truly are. The board is about 7 or 8 people, but anybody who stands in section L is a Misfit. Therefore, there's about 100+ Misfits at any given Michigan Tech hockey game. Occasionally, we'll overflow into other sections. There were 23 of us that travelled to Ann Arbor.
My hometown is Grand Rapids, Mich., but the home of the Misfits will always and forever be Houghton, Mich.
Michigan Tech and it's not even close.
One thing to know about Mitch's Misfits:
There are several things that I think people should know about the Misfits, but I'll do my best to give you the Sparknotes version. Firstly, our rink holds half the town and we sell it out regularly. Secondly, half the rink is filled with Michigan Tech students. Thirdly, the Misfits are a student section born of a terrible era in Michigan Tech hockey. Whereas most sections required a really good season to get a student section going, we just decided during the dark days that we're going to have fun during games no matter what. We also have a standing policy – Misfits are to stand for the entirety of the game and cheer their heart out. Another thing that separates us from other student sections in the NCAA is the fact that we are separated from our band. This creates two points of consistent crowd energy throughout the game and I honestly cannot say enough about our band and how wonderful they are.
I love Michigan Tech hockey because:
Because the atmosphere is second to none. For a town that many would consider to be straight in the middle of nowhere, we get that building (the John MacInnes Student Ice Arena) rocking every game. Mel Pearson is also my favorite person on the planet for bringing Michigan Tech hockey back into relevance from a really dark period. Another thing I love about Michigan Tech hockey is the people. I've met many of my best friends by cheering on the Misfits and occasionally playing with the band. Michigan Tech is one big extended family and we definitely see that at our hockey games.
My favorite hockey memory is:
The time I won "Dance Mania" at the 2015 WCHA Final Five during my freshman year at the Xcel Energy Center. I won $250 and as a freshman, I didn't have to use my debit card for the rest of the semester! They gave me a giant, comic-sized check and it is prominently displayed over the TV in my apartment.
What I'm most looking forward to about the 2016-17 season is:
There are two things I'm looking forward to most about the season. Firstly, the defense of the MacNaughton cup. That cup was made here, it's our trophy, and it belongs in Houghton. I really hope our boys can keep where she was meant to be. Secondly, I cannot say enough about the freshman Misfits that have been coming in. They just get what it means to be a Michigan Tech hockey fan and to get out there and have fun no matter what the score is.
Describe WCHA hockey in one word:
In one word, the WCHA is history. It's arguably the most storied league in the NCAA, college hockey fans recognize the name immediately, and even though we don't have some of the bigger names, we have some of the bigger atmospheres.
Each week during the 2016-17 season, we will name on lucky winner the WCHA Fan of the Week, Powered by E Group. The winner will receive a WCHA Fan Prize Pack courtesy of E Group and will be featured on WCHA.com. To be eligible, post a picture of yourself watching a WCHA game to Twitter, Instagram or Facebook with the hashtag #WeAreWCHA.
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