The bus rides in the NAHL can be long and unforgiving, but for one Bismarck Bobcat, it’s the way he passes the time on the road that is leaving his teammates in stitches.
The Bismarck Bobcats season is one of the longer ones in junior hockey, starting in August and ending in possibly May. That’s a lot of miles on the bus, a place where defenseman Chase Beacom found an interesting way to fight off the boredom.
“You know, we do some activities and my activity ended up being knitting,” says Defenseman Chase Beacom. “It was my second-day learning. And the day before, my billet taught me so that’s how I got into it.”
Chase’s billet mom Linda Wolf proposed knitting to him at the start of this season, and to her surprise, he said yes.
“So we took, maybe, a little more than an hour,” says Linda Wolf. “I sat with him and showed him the basics and he took off. I mean, he just took off. I’m very impressed with how quickly he picked it up.”
So on the road to a game against North Iowa, Chase got started on his scarf, assistant coach Hunter Laslo snapping a picture of the moment.
“Surprising to me,” says assistant coach Hunter Laslo. “Didn’t think that would’ve been a popular hobby out of hockey players on the road. That was a first for me. Been on a lot of bus trips and I used to play myself so that was a first for me. So I felt it was completely necessary to snap a picture of that and show proof.”
“Yeah, He was walking by and looked at me and started laughing and he took a picture,” says Beacom. “I was like, ‘You better not doing anything with it.’ Ends up, I see it on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram.”
The post got more than 300 likes on Facebook, one of the most popular posts that the Bobcats have had on their page. For Linda Wolf, she’s happy he’s stuck with the hobby that has made Chase popular.
“He’s got goals and whatever he chooses to do, he’s going to do a good job,” says Wolf. “He’s focused and plans ahead and ‘I want to get this done and he gets it done.”
Wolf has housed many Bismarck Bobcats throughout the years.
“Knowing the kids on the ice makes it more exciting,” says Wolf. “Because you have that connection. Where instead of watching a bunch of guys playing, it’s like my guy is playing which makes it so much more fun.”
Chase has also made his impact with the team as a second-year player, leading the Bobcats in blocked shots.
“He’s got a warrior’s mentality,” says Laslo. “So he doesn’t play like he’s 5’8″ like he is. He plays like he’s 6 plus foot like the other guys on our back end.”
He also leads the team in knitting skills… but that doesn’t mean his teammates won’t give it a go.
“Yeah, a couple did. A couple wanted to learn,” says Beacom. “At my pace, it’s not going to be anytime soon. They would be expecting about a year for a full scarf, but we’ll see.”