Austin Pond Hockey Club Proves Hockey is Growing in Non-traditional Markets


The Austin Pond Hockey Club is a youth-directed hockey program in the Texas city of Austin that was formed in 2013 by Jamie and Mary Clare Matthews.


The club uses a facility with two ice sheets, “The Pond” and “The Barn”.  The rink now serves as home for more than 150 youth players and hundreds of others who have found a winter wonderland amongst the Texas heat.  In the article linked below from USA Hockey, the story of the Austin Mallards is explored in more detail.  The program features 10 and under, 12 and under and 14 and under tournament teams that play competitive, travel hockey, among other more recreational programs.  To coach and run these programs, the Matthews’ recruited many hockey lifers, including New Englander Jason Pierce as player development director.  The area has been extremely receptive to the sport, with a lot of more traditional warm-weather athletes making the switch to the winter sport.  This has been a trend in recent years, with ice hockey expanding to areas in the United States that have not been exposed to it in the past, including California, Florida and, clearly, Texas.  The prominence of NHL teams in those areas, like the Dallas Stars, has certainly helped this growth, growth that looks to continue into the foreseeable future.



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