Sean Gustin is a rarity in college sports, a two-sport All-Academic selection. And he’s doing it at the highest level, playing Division 1 hockey and baseball at the College of Holy Cross in Worcester.
Gustin has strong Chelsea roots. He is the son of Andrea (Pompeo) Gustin and Bryan Gustin and spent the first five years of his life on Cottage Street in the city.
He is the grandson of Carol Pompeo of Chelsea and the late Joseph Pompeo. They are related to the well-known Kopaczynski and Lombardozzi families of Chelsea.
Gustin was in the area Tuesday pitching for the Worcester Bravehearts of the Future Collegiate Baseball League. He did not allow an earned run in two innings as Worcester defeated the North Shore Navigators, 2-1, at Fraser Field in Lynn.
“Sean has been impressive,” said Worcester Bravehearts coach Justin Edwards. “He’s done everything really well for us. He’s closed some games and come in to games in middle relief. He’s been one of our most consistent guys out of the bullpen. I didn’t know he played hockey but that shows what a great athlete he is. He’s real competitive.”
A team captain in hockey and baseball standout at the prestigious Belmont Hill School, Gustin wanted to play two sports in college and the Holy Cross coaches were amenable to his decision.
Sean’s former hockey coach ay Holy Cross, Paul Pearl (he has moved on to a coaching position at Harvard), said Gustin’s ability to play two Division 1 sports is worthy of national recognition.
“People should know about this because I think it’s a really big deal, it’s not easy to do this, it’s not easy at all. He’s also a great student to go along with his achievements.”
Gustin is often asked which sport he enjoys more.
“The reason why I continue to play both is that I love both sports. In hockey season I love hockey and in baseball season I love baseball. It’s really special for me to continue to play both at such a high level.”
Gustin runs in to some scheduling conflicts in February when hockey is heading toward the playoffs and baseball season is starting.
“I’ll be focused on hockey but I’ll go to a few baseball practices a week and do some pitching and talk with my teammates. Once hockey season ends, it’s baseball from there on out.”
Gustin said the key to his success in academics and athletics has been “time management.” He is a Dean’s List student majoring in Economics and received All-Academic recognition in both sports.
Bryan and Andrea Gustin are quite proud of their son’s academic and athletic achievements. They also have a daughter, Breanna, who is a soccer and basketball player at Arlington Catholic.
“Sean enjoys playing both sports and he works hard at it,” said Bryan Gustin, a former hockey captain at Merrimack College. “It’s a great experience for him at Holy Cross. They’re making it work and he enjoys it. We’re proud of him.”
Andrea, a former cheerleader and track athlete at Pope John High School, said her son began his participation in sports in Stoneham youth programs.
“He moved on to Belmont Hill in eighth grade and played two years varsity baseball and hockey and was captain of the baseball team,” said Andrea. “Between his junior and senior years the college coaches started to contact Sean about playing baseball and hockey.”
Andrea, who was admired by her classmates and friends while growing up on Cottage Street, said her son
“You couldn’t ask for a better son,” said Andrea. “He’s such a great kid and so kindhearted.”
And a great role model for student-athletes everywhere.
Bruins get honors, Garden gets makeover
Bruins players Patrice Bergeron and Tuukka Rask received their due at Tuesday night’s NHL Awards night in Las Vegas. Bergeron earned double honors, having been named the winner of the 2013-14 Frank J. Selke Trophy. The Selke Trophy is awarded annually “to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game. Bergeron is a repeat winner of the Selke, having won the honor in the 2011-12 season, and has been named as a finalist for three consecutive years. The second award he earned was the 2014 NHL Foundation Award. The NHL Foundation Player Award is awarded annually to the NHL player “who applies the core values of (ice) hockey—commitment, perseverance and teamwork—to enrich the lives of people in his community.”
Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask was named winner of the 2013-14 Vezina Trophy for the first time. The Vezina Trophy is awarded annually “to the goaltender adjudged to be the best at his position,” selected by the General Managers of the 30 NHL clubs. In addition, Bruins defenseman Torey Krug was named to the 2013-2014 NHL All-Rookie Team.
On Monday, former Bruins coach Pat Burns (1997-2000) was elected into the Hockey Hall of Fame, in the ‘Builder Category.’ Burns began his 14- year NHL coaching career with the Montreal Canadiens – winning the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s Coach of the Year for in his first NHL season (1988). He earned the award again with Toronto Maple Leafs (1993), and again with Boston in 1988 – a record three times – a record that should have paved his way into the Hockey Hall of Fame while he was still alive. Burns sadly passed away in 2010 at the age of 58. Burns also won the Stanley Cup with New Jersey in 2003.
Bruins fans craving hockey will have the opportunity to start to satisfy their desire as the pre-season schedule was revealed, and includes three games at TD Garden. The pre-season begins with the Montreal Canadiens hosting the B’s on September 23, the Bruins will return to TD Garden ice 9/24 to take on the Washington Capitals. The remaining schedule (subject to change) has 9/26 at Washington Capitals, 9/27 at Detroit Red Wings, 9/30 B’s hosting New York Islanders, 10/3 vs. Islanders in Bridgeport, CT, and 10/4 B’s hosting Red Wings.
The regular season opens against the Philadelphia Flyers at TD Garden on Wednesday, October 8 at 7:30pm. Highlights at TD Garden include the annual day-after-Thanksgiving home game on Friday, November 28 against the Winnipeg Jets at 7:00pm, and a New Year’s Eve matchup against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday, December 31. Road highlights include a season-long five-game road trip, which will see the Bruins battle the Vancouver Canucks on February 13, the Calgary Flames on February 16, the Edmonton Oilers on February 18, the St. Louis Blues on February 20 and the Chicago Blackhawks on February 22.
Last week local media was invited to view the progress, to date, of the Delaware North Companies $70 million renovation two-year project at TD Garden. About 30% of the planned innovations are finished. Plans include the complete overhaul of Level 4 and Balcony Level 7, the installation of high-density Wi-fi, redesigned concourse hospitality zones and concession stands, and updated food and beverage concepts. Fans will enjoy the development of a new ProShop on Level 2, with double the space of the existing store. Fans will be able to visit the huge ProShop which stocks the entire Bruins/Celtics inventory during games, rather than the satellite locations, which offer fans limited inventory.
The renovation of Legends Club, the private high-end restaurant for Bruins and Celtics season ticket holders, will be breathtaking in size and scope. The Garden will be open throughout the renovations with limited construction impacts. The level 4 concourse, half of the food and beverage stands, and Legends Club is expected to be completed for the beginning of the season. The Bruins ProShop is set to open by the end of the year and the level 7-concourse makeover is slated for summer of 2015.
As part of this two-year renovation, Sportservice, the arena’s food and beverage services, and retail management company, will overhaul all the existing food and beverage locations on the concourses, and introduce 25 new portable food and beverage carts. More common space designed to provide a place for fans to socialize, dine and drink have been incorporated into the new design. Food and beverage concepts will emphasize bringing a taste of Boston to TD Garden with specialty menu items selected for their connection to Boston and New England.