BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - Before WLOX Sports Director A.J. Giardina officially retires on June 29, he's taking a look back at some of the highlights in his 39-year broadcasting career at WLOX. Here's one of his favorite memories...
Hockey made its way on the ice inside the Mississippi Coast Coliseum in 1996 with the arrival of the Mississippi Sea Wolves.
Head coach Bruce Boudreau quickly developed a winning team in the ECHL, and on May 30, 1999, he guided the Sea Wolves to a thrilling 4-3 win over the Richmond Renegades in the seventh game of the Kelly Cup championship.
A crowd of 9,150 fans turned up for game seven, hoping to celebrate a Kelly Cup championship. They would have to wait until the second overtime period to do so. The young Renegades took control of the game, grabbing a 3-1 lead and the Kelly Cup trophy appeared to be slipping away from the hungry Seawolves.
However, the hunger drove Coach Bruce Boudreau's team to turn up the heat in the third period. As Kelly Hurd glided through and around Renegade defenders, the Seawolves trailed 3-2 at 4:45 of the third period. As the clock kept ticking down, the Seawolves kept fighting. Bob Woods came through, tying the game with only 2 minutes and 23 seconds remaining. New life from the Kelly Cup trophy was within grasp!
Overtime we go, not once but twice.
Seawolves goalie Travis Scott, the Kelly Cup MVP, would display his all-star quality, stopping two Renegade breakaways. Finally, at 10:31 of the second overtime period, Kevin Hilton put the icing on the cake... and the puck in the net.
The Kelly Cup trophy belongs to Mississippi!
Coach Boudreau had a goal of coaching in the National Hockey League. Since the Kelly Cup win, he's been the head coach of three NHL teams and is now coaching the Minnesota Wild. Bob Woods is an assistant coach under Boudreau.