SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The Springfield Thunderbirds began their run in the Calder Cup Playoffs Wednesday night at the MassMutual Center.
The Thunderbirds faced against the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins Wednesday night and came out with a win, 4-1. Thunderbirds fans had their pride on full display for this first match up.
“I got to go big or go home! This hair-piece, this is obviously T for my name but also T for the T-Birds,” said Tomeka Ligom of Springfield.
“Big fan! Big fan since the Falcons,” said Tom Rezzani of Springfield. When asked what he hopes to see from the team… “GOALS! Big goals! I like Sam Anas, I like James Neil. We like them all! We talk to them we love them!”
This series marks the city of Springfield’s first playoff since 2014, when the Falcons dropped Game 5 of their first-round series against the Providence Bruins. It’s also the first-ever postseason series between Springfield and Wilkes-Barre/Scranton since the Penguins’ entrance into the AHL in 1999.
The Thunderbirds played the Penguins a few times in the regular season. In the last meeting between the clubs on April 23, Springfield beat Wilkes-Barre 3 to 1 in front of a sold-out crowd of more than 6,700 at the MassMutual Center.
“It’s amazing! Just a amazing and a lot of fun! Gonna watch the T-Birds win,” said Teriana Aldrich of Ludlow.
Some fans say they have been season ticket holders for over a decade and are proud to see the T-Birds become a stronger team out on the ice.
West Springfield resident Al Arment told 22News, “This has been a long time coming. We’ve had good teams but this is one of the best teams we’ve had in a long time. We can’t see any reason why this team can’t go all the way to the Calder Cup.”
“I love hockey! I won’t miss a game. I could be sick and I’ll still be here,” said Pam Arment of West Springfield.
Don’t forget, the next game in the series will be Thursday at the MassMutual Center. Puck drops at 7:05 p.m.