Scotty Gomez Foundation

Cynthia Lopez, Reporter

Carlos Gomez, Scotty Gomez’s father, was inspired by his son’s love and dedication to practicing hockey at a nearby rink in his neighborhood. This lead him to be very successful because of his hard work as well as his fathers’ support.

Scotty’s family wasn’t poor, yet they weren’t able to pay for hockey programs in Anchorage. Carlos tried his hardest to work and get Scotty enough money to join a program.

When Scotty graduated high school he continued his hockey career path and made it into the NHL. After winning many trophies and playing for many popular NHL teams, he decided to retire at age 36. During Scotty’s successful career, his father thought about the idea to start an association where kids with economic struggles could go and learn hockey exactly like the other associations that were more costly.

The Scotty Gomez Foundation Association was then created to fund kids that don’t have enough money to be part of other hockey associations. With many contributors in the program, they  began training kids from ages four to 18 that wanted to improve in hockey and become great players for less money.

All of the players in the association are called the Rams which is also the mascot. Players love being in this association as it functions the same way as any other hockey group where they spend many practices on the ice and outside of the ice doing workouts to prepare for games. Many of the older players play for the Rams as well as their high school hockey team which brings them closer together as they play a fair game against each other and together.

He started playing in 3rd grade when his mother was told about the program and how beneficial it was to get the chance to learn a sport that doesn’t demand large payments. Aldo Coyotl, a Bantam division player says, ”I get inspired by my old coach…he pushed me to get better and got me to be on a higher division.”

The coaches are a very important part of the association as they take time to train kids to be their best and work as a team.They put in effort to create a strong, united team and get to have great connections with the kids.

Ali Vudahl, a Bantam division coach, has played hockey since she was a kid and said, “I love the idea of giving back and teaching kids how to play.” Some coaches have said that they feel inspired when teaching the kids as they grow and learn skills of dedication and believing that they can do anything they set their mind to.

Besides teaching hockey, many coaches look after the kids grades to see that school is a main priority before sports. The older a player gets, the more coaches check grades to see if players are keeping homework and hockey balanced to avoid lowering grades. If students can’t keep the balance, they make sure the player gets back on track or they won’t get the opportunity to practice or participate in games.

Parents are another major piece of the association. They contribute by taking their kids to practice, being the time keeper during the game, and working the scoreboard during games.

Jessica Sedlacek likes the association and says, “It gives a chance to all kids to play an inexpensive sport.” Her son has only been in the association for a year and both Sedlacek and her son enjoy being apart of the Rams family.