by Mark Eisenhauer
In order to raise money for those affected by Hurricane Sandy, the New Jersey-based company Great Saves Goaltending is hosting “Saves for Sandy,” in which hockey goalies acquire sponsors who donate money for each save in a given game.
According to owner Tom Fugo, all donations will benefit the American Red Cross; Great Saves has already raised over $21,000.
“What started out as a small gesture to raise $2,000 from our goalie community turned into a tremendous effort by goalies we know and goalies we have never met. Great Saves was receiving phone calls from many goalie parents from around our tri-state area who wanted to help,” according to greatsavesgoaltending.com.
Westfield is among the towns participating in this event. Ethan Finver and Jamie Wolfe, two eighth graders at RIS, are supporting this fundraiser while playing for their respective club teams.
Finver, goaltender for the Bridgewater Bears, has raised $916, according to crowdrise.com. “Twenty years ago my grandparents nearly lost their entire home to Hurricane Andrew. I felt really bad for the people affected by [Hurricane Sandy], so I wanted to help,” he said.
According to Fugo, his original idea was to hold free lessons and accept donations for hurricane relief efforts. But that became difficult with the week off from school, and he got his “Saves for Sandy,” idea from one of his goalies, Lucas Podvey, who is part of the NJ Devils Youth program.
While no WHS hockey players are now involved in this program, some are considering it. Said WHS senior goalie Dan Cetlin, “It sounds like a great idea because it would definitely motivate our goalies to make saves.”
Even professional hockey players, who are currently in a lockout, found a way to raise money for Sandy victims. NHL players met in Atlantic City a few weeks ago to play a charity game for which tickets ranged from $20–100. Players' equipment was also autographed and auctioned off for the cause, according to espn.com.
Said Fugo: “[The fundraiser] was successful because of the great cause involved and the fact the goalies took ownership of it. It became their way of making a difference to those in need.”
Those interested in donating should visit crowdrise.com/greatsavesforsandy.