By Mike Prang
ADRIAN — “It’s hockey night in Adrian, let’s play Bulldogs hockey!”
One might hear from the speakers of the Arrington Ice Arena as one of the seven Adrian College hockey teams take the ice. It is a familiar voice the crowd loves to hear.
It’s Dave “Goose” Van Geison. The 1983 graduate of Adrian College has made himself a true alumnus as he stays part of the Adrian College community. Goose has been the public address announcer for the Adrian College hockey teams for quite some time now. Starting in 2015 when only five teams took the ice, Goose has been the PA announcer for more than 700 games.
Thursday, Oct. 28, when the Adrian College ACHA men’s Division 1 team took the ice against Ohio University, it marked the 700th game as PA announcer for Van Geison.
Goose started working Adrian College athletic events as the official scorer for men’s and women’s basketball games. Before Matt Kibby and company put on hockey productions for fans to watch the games online, Goose would announce the live streams.
One day his son Joe volunteered his dad to be a fill-in as PA announcer for one of the hockey games. Goose found his home away from home between the penalty boxes of the Arrington Ice Arena.
“Goose is someone who lives and breathes AC Hockey,” said head Adrian College women’s hockey coach Shawn Skelly. “It’s a big surprise if you hear someone else’s voice on the PA during any hockey game at Arrington Ice Arena.
“To have announced more than 700 games is an incredible milestone and something to be proud of. Our AC Hockey family can’t thank him enough for all the time and effort he has put in over the years and hope he has plenty more to come.”
‘Let’s Play Bulldog Hockey!” Most sports fans go to sporting events to watch the action on the field. Goose did as well, but also listened closely to the PA announcers to learn some of the things to say during the game. He took some of the things he learned and brought it to the Arrington.
One thing some of the players have enjoyed during the starting lineups is being announced as “from the pride of Moundsville, West Virginia” like Adrian women’s hockey star Kristin Lewicki. Since then, members of the team would ask Goose to be the “pride” player in the starting lineup. In addition to the fans and players, the officials enjoyed the starting lineups by placing friendly wagers on who the “pride” player would be.
Another phrase he incorporated into Adrian hockey was “This is a Bulldog Power Play!”.
The next year, the power play and penalty kill was sold and now had a sponsor. After a couple of years at ice level, Goose took his talents to the Adrian College baseball and softball fields where he became the home PA announcer.
Not only did he announce who was up to bat, or who the starting pitcher was, he kept his own score for every game, and even appeared on some of the Adrian College TV broadcasts during the 2021 baseball season.
“Adrian College baseball is very fortunate to have “The Goose” on the mic at The Nic,” said head baseball coach Craig Rainey. “After so many years of hearing Mr. Van Geison announce the starting line-up for the Bulldogs, it has become tradition.
“Our athletic department is beyond blessed to have “The Goose” and his commitment to our student-athletes. His passion for making game day special is second to none. We appreciate all the years of dedication and commitment.”
His resume goes on and on as he spent a few seasons working football, volleyball and even announced the US Figure Skating Championship hosted by Adrian College.
“Dave Van Geison is the true pride of Adrian College Athletics.” said athletic director Michael Duffy. “I truly do not know what I would do without him. Announcer, scorebook, or whatever is needed to help us run a top notch home contest, Dave is the guy.”
With all the seasons spent being the man behind the microphone, Goose had plenty of memories to go along with it.
“The National Championships for the ACHA men’s D1 team are toward the top,” he said. “They were on the road and I could not travel because a week before both of them one of my parents died. I have a ring from each championshi, and I joke that one is my mom’s and the other is my dad’s.”
Even his championship rings have PA engraved on the side.
“Goose is such a big part of our community here at Adrian College,” said Gary Astolos, head coach of the Adrian ACHA men’s D1 hockey team. “While he has announced numerous events here at Adrian, he really is a part of the team and I know our coaches and student-athletes enjoy spending time with him at the rink. Seven hundred games is a special accomplishment and we are so lucky to have such a great person to be a part of Bulldog hockey.”
He also highlighted announcing the Frozen Four the year Adrian College was the host. Another memory was being surprised by his son on the mic from the other end of the rink and Matt Eller of the Adrian College NCAA men’s hockey team skating over with a team autographed jersey for his 60th birthday.
Joe Van Geison told his father one game to keep an eye on a player named Brad Kobryn and see if he was good or not.
During Dave’s first game as the hockey PA announcer, he sent his son a text message ten minutes into the game saying “Kobryn has already scored three goals”.
Goose was dedicated to Adrian College. After his graduation in 1983, he moved back to his hometown of Battle Creek. He constantly made the hour and a half trip to announce the games or keep the book at the basketball scorer’s table.
“The Adrian College Athletic Department has a gem in Dave and all that he brings to our department,” Duffy said. “His knowledge of sport is second to none. I hope he has another 20 years in him which may equate to thousands of more contests. The joy and passion he shows to all the teams is just so outstanding.”
Yes, Goose receives some compensation from the athletic department for his work, but it is more to him than money. Those long Saturdays where there is an ACHA hockey game at 10:00 a.m. followed by a basketball game at 3:00 p.m. and another hockey game at 7:00 p.m., Goose is there. He’s the man behind the mic for more than a paycheck. He’s the man behind the mic for the love of Adrian College
(Originally published at https://www.lenconnect.com/story/sports/2021/11/11/van-geison-calls-700th-game-adrian-college-hockey/6367634001/)