On Saturday Feb. 9th the NJ Renegades hosted the Philadelphia JR Flyers. Although it was a regular MJHL division game, it held a different meaning to the players and the organization. The reason being, The Rossi Famly. Forward Chris Rossi, his brother Pete who is the assistant coach of the team, and their parents were manning the tables for this night in a charity event that had special meaning to them. Unfortunately they lost their child and brother Dan a little over a year ago to suicide, and the family formed the Daniel Rossi Memorial Scholarship Fund for Suicide Awareness. "We deal with older players in Jr hockey; this topic really hit home with a lot of kids, as well as their parents. This event was such an eye opener for a lot of people and I think raising "awareness" was such a good thing for all involved', said Owner Cliff Graziano.
The awareness was the main aspect of the event. The Rossi Family in conjunction with the NJ Renegades also raised funds for the D.R.M.S.F. by running all kinds of events such as chuck-a-puck, 50/50 raffle, Score-O, and auctioned of the players jerseys. "It was such a nice event that was put on and just a small way we could help the Rossi Family. We always said here at he Renegades that we are family first and when we heard about the Rossi situation, we felt it was only right that our Renegades family could help theirs" said Head Coach Chris Ceransky.
First there was the ceremonial face off with the family, followed by the game and plenty of pictures afterwards. Player Chris Rossi wore #21 in a tribute to his brother Dan.
As far as the game, the Renegades won 10-2 as Austin Albrecht led the charge with 5 goals and 2 assists. Liam Sheehan had 2 goals and 1 assist and Dan Bellafiore had 1 goal and 4 assists. Cody Williams had 1 goal and 1 assist and became the single season leader in Renegades history with an overall total of 37 goals, 32 assists for a total of 69 points.
All in all it was a good night for the team, the organization and most importantly the Rossi Family and the awareness that was raised by their family as well as the players, coaches, administrators, and the youth club. Thanks to all on a job well done!
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