Mathieson picks up ice time with Notre Dame

Loyola graduate shows they play hockey here



January 16, 2002|By Bill Free | Bill Free,SUN STAFF

T.J. Mathieson often rubs shoulders with the top collegiate ice hockey players in the nation.

He's been on the same ice with defending national champion Boston College and played in famed Yost Ice Arena on the University of Michigan campus.

Mathieson routinely plays in front of 6,000 to 8,000 fans.

Not bad for a Clarksville native and Loyola High graduate who started out in the Squirts program at the Columbia Ice Rink and is in his second season on the Notre Dame ice hockey team.

Yes, that's Notre Dame as in South Bend.

"I didn't know they played ice hockey in Maryland," is the routine one-liner Mathieson hears as he skates as a defenseman for the Fighting Irish, who are 8-9-5 this season.

Notre Dame is 6-6 in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association and has lost its share of tough ones this season to the likes of Boston College.

The Irish were locked in a 1-1 tie early in the third period with BC before the Eagles scored three unanswered goals for a 4-1 victory.

Mathieson, who walked onto the team last season, has played in 13 of the 22 Notre Dame games this season, getting an opportunity to show off his skills over the Christmas holidays to some of his Baltimore-area friends.

The ice-hockey buffs traveled to Princeton, N.J., to watch the Irish defeat Princeton twice (2-1 and 4-2) in a weekend doubleheader. Mathieson didn't score or get any assists in the two Princeton games, but he does have one goal and one assist this season, and a plus-four goals ratio.

"They just couldn't believe how much faster the game is in college," said Mathieson, who had a perfect 4.0 grade-point average in the recently completed fall semester after having a 3.8 his freshman year.

Smear is back

Junior Maria Smear (St. Mary's) has returned to the basketball court for the Yale University women's basketball team after missing the first 12 games of the season with a stress fracture.

Smear, a first-team All-Metro selection her senior year at St. Mary's, has averaged nine minutes in two games and scored three points and has three rebounds. Yale is 7-7.

Smear started for Yale as a sophomore and is expected to start again this season as she works her way back.

Et cetera

Sophomore tight end Kyle Acker (Annapolis) was selected to the first team All-Dixie Conference team despite Averett (Va.) College's 2-7 record. Acker's high school teammate, sophomore linebacker Brandon Gulley, suffered an ankle injury early in the season for Dean Junior College (Franklin, Mass.) and missed the rest of the season. Gulley was a first-team All-Metro choice in 2000.

Another Dean sophomore, Camaro Henson (Annapolis), is playing basketball after leading the football team in pass receptions.

Two more former Annapolis High football standouts, sophomores Rayvon Johnson and Aaron Copeland, have completed two years at West Hills (Calif.) Community College. Johnson and Copeland are both receiving offers from Division I-A schools.

Have an item for Postcards? Contact Bill Free by e-mail at or by phone at 410-833-5349.

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