Local Sports Journal

Muskegon Lumberjacks fans will be able to enjoy another hour of hockey talk on the radio starting Tuesday when the team unveils its weekly “Lumberjacks Hockey Hour” on Muskegon’s new 100.9 FM.

The show, hosted by Lumberjacks radio play-by-play announcer Bryan Fongers and the team’s Director of Creative Services Alex Nicholson, will air from 6-7 p.m. Tuesdays for the rest of the season.

As Fongers puts it, the show will allow Lumberjacks fans to “catch up on latest surrounding the Lumberjacks organization both on and off the ice featuring staff and player interviews along with checking in on notable alumni playing in college or the professional ranks and updates from around the USHL.”

The show developed quickly following the recent launch of the radio station. The station’s broadcasting general manager, Andy O’Riley, is a longtime popular radio personality in West Michigan, and has been working for the Lumberjacks for several years as a roving announcer, interviewing fans during games at the arena.

When Nicholson heard about the new radio station, he came up with the idea for the Lumberjacks show, and plans quickly came together.

“I got my start in media working at my high school radio station,” said Nicholson, who added that the show will eventually have a call-in option for listeners, after some technical issues are worked out. “It was something I loved. So as soon as I heard Andy had a new radio station, I figured it would be another great opportunity to talk to our community and tell our story to them.”

O’Riley said he was thrilled to have Muskegon’s hockey team as a weekly feature on the new station.

“For over 50 years, hockey has been a staple in the Muskegon Community,” O’Riley said. “The USHL’s Muskegon Lumberjacks continue the tradition of giving us a chance to cheer for the home team and watch as players chase their dream of making it to the National Hockey League.

“For Muskegon’s 100.9 FM to give them a chance to better connect with our listeners is a winning situation for everyone.”

The new show will likely be the source of happy news for Lumberjacks fans throughout the season. That’s because the Jacks are off to a great start this season, despite a recent rash of injuries that left the team temporarily without two of its biggest scorers.

The Lumberjacks defeated Bloomington Saturday at L.C. Walker Arena 4-1, after falling behind by a goal after one period. They pulled away with third period goals from Matej Paulovic, Tom Marchin and Christian Wolanin.

The Jacks will have two home games next weekend – Friday against Waterloo at 7:15 p.m. and Sunday against Bloomington at 5:15 p.m. They will have a total of 10 home games throughout the rest of November and December.