Monsters Move South, Holden Heads West

Sean Ritchlin
When Monsters fans tune into ESPN 850 WKNR this weekend to follow the team on the road, they’ll be a bit taken aback by the sound of the broadcast. That’s because the voice of the Monsters, Ben Holden, will be absent from the booth on the team’s southern swing through the state of Texas. Holden will even miss Saturday’s game, an 8 p.m. contest against the San Antonio Rampage that will be broadcast on MY43 WUAB. In fact, he’ll be more than 1,300 miles away from the team.

Accompanied by color commentator Sean Ritchlin, Holden will be calling the NCAA Ice Hockey Midwest Regional in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The duo, who makes up the Monsters TV broadcast team, will call the three-game tournament, a regional competition that gives the winner a bid to the 2010 Frozen Four and a chance at the NCAA ice hockey national title. The Frozen Four will be held at Ford Field in Detroit from April 8-10.

Held at the Allen County War Memorial, the Midwest Regional will feature two games on Saturday, as the Miami University (Ohio) RedHawks will take on the Alabama-Huntsville Chargers followed by an evening game pitting the University of Michigan Wolverines against the Bemidji State Beavers. The Miami-Alabama game, which is slated for 4 p.m., will be broadcast live on ESPN U, followed by the Michigan-Bemidji game, which begins at 7:30 and will be broadcast live on espn360.com and syndication. The winners of those games will faceoff Sunday at 8 p.m. with a bid to the Frozen Four on the line in a contest that will be seen live on ESPN U.

“I’m very grateful to the Monsters organization for letting me do these games with ESPN,” said Holden. “It’s a huge honor, and I’m proud to work for the Monsters, who have been nothing short of first class since my arrival. I am also very excited to call these games over the weekend.”

Prior to beginning his job with the Monsters in the 2009-10 season, Holden worked as a play-by-play announcer for Comcast, ESPN and CBS College Sports.

In his place, former San Antonio Rampage broadcaster Joe Dominey will be taking over, calling the three games in Texas, with Holden returning to his rightful position in the Monsters broadcast booth on Thursday, April 1st, when the Monsters are in Peoria.

On Saturday, during the TV broadcast, Dominey will be accompanied by the Monsters director of hockey and community relations, Jock Callander, who will fill in for Ritchlin as the color commentator. Prior to working for the Monsters, Callander played professionally for 18 years, including spending seven seasons with the Cleveland Lumberjacks and winning a Stanley Cup with the Pittsburgh Penguins in 1992.

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