YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Adaptive Sports Ohio held its fifth annual Youngstown Boom and Phantoms charity sled hockey game Friday night at Deep Freeze Ice Arena.
The Boom is made up of players ranging in age from 4-55, all of whom have a disability. This year’s game looked different from previous years due to COVID-19.
“Normally, we host a charity game with our players against the Phantoms, but because of COVID, we had to put a different spin on it,” said Lisa Followay, CEO of Adaptive Sports Ohio. “So we are now competing as the Phantoms, so each one of our Boom players is representing one of the Phantoms.”
The Boom looks forward to this event every year. The program believes it is a great way to show that hockey is a sport anyone can play.
“Ability level has nothing to do with it,” said Boom player Billy Weaver. “It just has more commitment than anything. If you can commit to playing and practicing, you’ll develop some sort of skills and you’ll be useful on a team in some aspect.”
Adaptive Sports Ohio live streamed the event and auctioned off items virtually throughout the game. All proceeds raised go directly to the Boom program.
“It helps cover ice time, equipment repairs, it helps them go to competitions,” Followay said. “Sometimes they’re competing in the state and a lot of times they’re not. They have to travel, so this helps cover a lot of our expenses.”