Springfield Thunderbirds defeat Charlotte Checkers at MassMutual Center Sunday

Springfield Thunderbirds defeat Charlotte Checkers at MassMutual Center Sunday
Published: May. 22, 2022 at 11:09 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) -The Springfield Thunderbirds toppled the Charlotte Checkers Sunday in their playoff series opener, beating the team six to zero. This is the first time Springfield and Charlotte have met in the postseason in the two cities’ storied AHL histories.

Western Mass News spoke with several Thunderbirds superfans at Sunday afternoon’s thrilling playoff game, including one man who told me what makes this season more special than years past.

The MassMutual Center was buzzing with excitement on Sunday following the Thunderbirds’ emphatic win against the Charlotte Checkers.

“It’s really nice to see the crowd come together and support their team because we haven’t had this, I say maybe 25 years so it’s kind of a crazy environment,” Westfield resident Donald Derosier said.

The T-birds took game one of the Atlantic Division finals, shutting out the Checkers by a final score of six to zero. Dans expressed their enthusiasm after the Thunderbirds’ triumph.

“This was a huge win, we got the momentum going we have the team, we have the coaching staff, we have the fans, especially this is going to be one of the best teams we’ve had in a long long time,” said Al Arment, West Springfield resident.

Another Thunderbirds superfan said the hockey fandom in Springfield has brought him something more than just a game to watch.

“I can’t even describe it, I’ve been coming here for almost 10 years, and it has a lot more meaning...Robby, one of my good friends I go to games with his grandmother that passed away came to games a lot with Robby and it’s for him it’s very hard, but we know she’s watching we know every goal is for her. So let’s try to bring the cup back to Springfield for her,” said Westfield resident Andrew Bushey.

The Thunderbirds will take on Charlotte for game two of the best-of-five series on Wednesday at the MassMutual Center. Fans told Western Mass News they are ready to cheer them on.

“I will be here, I cannot wait to be here,” Derosier said.

“Oh I’m going to be here in a red, white, and blue wig, my cowbells, I’m going to go all out...Go Thunderbirds!” Arment said.

Playoff tickets for game two are on sale. More information can be found here.