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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, December 15, 2011

Lucky fan sinks puck for second “Miracle on Ice”

Matt Alheim never played hockey, but he believes his golf game helped him sink a shot from center ice to win a car.

Alheim, 38, of Clifton Park, and a 1991 graduate of Guilderland High School, won a Chevy Sonic during the second intermission of a hockey game between Union College and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Saturday during the Festivus Faceoff in Lake Placid. Alheim attended the game with his son, Brennan, and his travel hockey team, which was in Lake Placid for a tournament.

The game was played at the same site of the 1980 Miracle on Ice when the United States beat Russia during the Olympics. “It’s the second Miracle on Ice,” quipped Alheim this week. “It was kind of crazy.”

Brennan’s hockey team was siding with Union on Saturday and some of the fathers filled out a slip for the publicity advertisement for Chevy, dropping their chance to win into the Union box. Alheim, a physical therapist, was picked to participate alongside someone picked from the RPI side.

The RPI fan shot first, but missed. Alheim lined up his shot, shot it gently, and watched the puck as it went through the tiny hole.

“There’s a quarter-inch of wiggle room on each side,” said Alheim. “The puck tracked right in there.”

The Chevy Sonic is a “real small” car, said Alheim, who has three sons who play travel hockey. He currently drives a sport utility vehicle because his family needs the room. “I think the Sonic is a little tight,” he said.

Alheim moved to Guilderland from Cobleskill when he was in fifth grade. He played soccer, golf, and basketball for the Dutchmen.

“Moving to Guilderland was an adjustment, but I made some great friends,” said Alheim.

— Jordan J. Michael

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