Gary Hill, part of the Seattle Mariners radio broadcast team, is adding University of Washington women’s basketball to his resume.
An STAA member since 2008, Hill is a veteran of Seattle-area sports broadcasting circles. In addition to his work with the Mariners, Hill has been the voice of the WNBA’s Seattle Storm, University of Washington baseball and softball, and University of Puget Sound football and basketball. He’s also filled-in on Huskies men’s basketball and hosts the Seattle Seahawks Radio Network.
“I am thrilled to broadcast University of Washington Women’s Basketball,” Hill says. “The tradition of the program is tremendous and I am especially excited to work with Coach Wynn and her staff.”
Hill is a graduate of Washington State University.
(October 26 2017) In a year packed with personal milestones, Logan Ratick is adding one more to the list. Ratick, a 2017 STAA All-American, is the new women’s basketball voice and Sports Information/Media Relations assistant at the University of Vermont.
“It will be the most basketball play-by-play I’ve done in one season so I will have a lot of opportunities to get better and connect with my audience. It is not too far away from my home in Connecticut and I just spent a summer broadcasting baseball across the country.” Ratick grins, “Also, playing in Miami twice this season will be a great reprieve from the cold.”
If there is one reason to attend Syracuse University as an aspiring sportscaster, it’s the potential for relationship building. The ‘Cuse connection, combined with Ratick’s ambition, lead directly to the Catamounts opportunity.
“I knew that the University of Vermont was a starting point for a bunch of Syracuse graduates when I was still in school. During my sophomore year, (fellow STAA member) Kevin Fitzgerald was the UVM women’s basketball broadcaster. Other SU grads such as Mike Couzens have started there as well. While I was looking for basketball jobs this summer, I reached out to Sam Hyman, the men’s basketball broadcaster at UVM, who graduated Syracuse a year before I did. I asked him if the women’s broadcast position would open up and he said yes. Sam told me to get in touch with the right people.”
The seasonal position at UVM leaves Ratick free to continue pursuing baseball opportunities.
“It’s been my goal for a long time to move up to full season baseball. I had a great year with the Idaho Falls Chukars. My boss out there, Kevin Greene, and I agreed that I should look for a A/AA/AAA job and he thinks that I am capable of landing one. I understand some clubs would want me to start early, but the basketball season ends a few weeks before baseball begins.”
“I am good at working remotely and would not want another broadcasting opportunity to be the reason I miss out on a job.”
Ratick is excited to spend the winter getting courtside reps after a season on the diamond.
“I’m passionate about baseball and basketball. They are the sports I want to broadcast for many years. They are my two favorite sports.”
Matt Pauley has been named the new voice of University of Wisconsin-Green Bay women’s basketball. Pauley brings over 15 years of basketball broadcasting experience at the college and high school levels on radio, TV and other digital platforms. He’s been an STAA member since 2007.
Pauley is already known throughout much of the state as the host of the ‘Brewers Extra Innings’ post-game show that airs following Milwaukee Brewers baseball on their flagship station, 620 WTMJ. He also has a national profile and can be heard anchoring sports flash updates on ‘SB Nation Radio’ affiliates across the country.
“It’s hard to put into words how excited I am to be joining Green Bay women’s basketball as the team’s play-by-play broadcaster. An opportunity to join a program with a rich tradition like this one does not come around very often. I can’t wait to start broadcasting the games for the great fans of Phoenix women’s basketball.”
Prior to moving to Wisconsin, Pauley spent six years in Colorado Springs, Colo., where he was one of the broadcasters of Air Force men’s basketball. He also provided play-by-play of various other Air Force events for the ‘Mountain West Network’ streaming service. Pauley spent six years broadcasting Colorado Springs Sky Sox baseball, the Triple-A affiliate of the Brewers.
In addition to his work at the Air Force academy, he has served as the primary voice of Southeastern Community College men’s basketball, and Bryant and Stratton men’s and women’s basketball. Pauley has also provided television play-by-play of basketball on various channels and streaming services throughout his career.
Matt and his wife, Stefanie, reside in Brookfield with their two dogs, Katie and Kelly. He is a 2006 graduate of Kansas State University and a native of St. Louis, Mo.
(October 20, 2017) It’s not often that a broadcaster gets to call games for his alma mater, but that’s the opportunity earned by Greg Wong. An STAA member, Wong is the new women’s basketball voice at UC Davis.
At Davis, Wong joins fellow STAA member Scott Marsh on the broadcast staff. Marsh is the voice of Aggies football and men’s basketball.
When Wong was a student at Davis, the student radio station was also the flagship station for women’s basketball. “I was fortunate enough to be the primary play-by-play voice for the women’s basketball team both my junior and senior years, calling upwards of 70 home and road games,” says Wong.
In addition to honing his craft, the experience allowed Wong to build relationships with the Aggies coaching staff and athletic department. When UC Davis athletics became a property of Learfield Sports this year, Wong correctly guessed the school would discontinue using student broadcasters and would hire a women’s basketball voice.
“I have to give a special shout out to the three SIDs at Davis, Jason Spencer, Eric Bankston and Mark Honbo, all of whom I was able to build great relationships with when I went to school at Davis. They were the ones that recommended me to Learfield.”
Listen to a highlight from Greg
Aggies women’s basketball coach Jen Gross also put in a good word for Wong.
“It’s a great thrill to be able to broadcast for my alma mater, which was the place I fell in love with broadcasting and gave me the opportunity to learn and grow as a broadcaster. It’s incredible to be able to go back and be the voice of a team that has meant so much to me.”
Wong spent this summer as a broadcasting and media relations assistant for minor league baseball’s Harrisburg Senators. In 2016, he held a similar position with the West Virginia Power. His resume also includes Menlo Park Legends baseball, Diablo Valley (CA) College football, high school football on the Internet for the NFHS Network and a variety of experience on the UC Davis campus station.
He plans to continue in minor league baseball next summer. “I look forward to being able to pair this with a baseball broadcasting opportunity, which would allow me to stay on the air almost the entire year.”
Understanding the value of relationship building is one area in which Wong has grown since joining STAA in 2015. “STAA helped me realize the importance of networking and being persistent when pursuing potential jobs,” he says. “Last year I was frustrated when I contacted various schools and couldn’t find any basketball openings, but STAA and Jon Chelesnik have really help me understand that you never know when something is going to pop up as long as you stay active in the job market.
(October 12, 2017) Sometimes when an employer says they’ll keep you resume on file, they actually do. That’s what happened to STAA member Ari Ross. Now he’s a play-by-play broadcaster and assistant sports information director for Monroe College in New York.
“My official title is Assistant SID, and I’ll be the No. 1 media contact for their Bronx teams and the No. 2 for the New Rochelle teams, where I’ll also be doing a lot of the broadcasting on their live streams,” says Ross.
The opportunity arose after Ross unsuccessfully applied for a different job at Monroe in February. He explains, “Fast forward to August and I get an email from the Sports Information Director about an Assistant SID position with the college. The SID had found my resume from the previous job posting and contacted me.”
In addition to his office duties, Ross will be getting a ton of air-time. “I will be doing play-by-play for Monroe Mustangs football, men’s and women’s soccer, volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, softball and baseball.”
Listen to a highlight from Ari
Though Ross only recently graduated from Northwestern, he’s already built an impressive resume. He spent this summer broadcasting baseball for the Sioux Falls Canaries. He’s also called games for the Battle Creek Bombers, done play-by-play for various sports at Northwestern, written for newspapers, shot and edited video and produced Internet content.
The decision to leave minor league baseball for Monroe College was one that Ross considered carefully. “After two summers of working for independent teams in the Northwoods League and the American Association, I was interested in not only finding something more stable but also something in a larger city. When the opportunity came up at Monroe College in New York City, it immediately piqued my interest.”
The chance to broadcast a variety of sports isn’t the only benefit Ross sees in his relocation. “There are so many other opportunities, whether it be networking or freelance, that’ll I’ll be able to take advantage of in New York.”
After two seasons in the USHL, David Fine is moving up the minor league hockey ladder. An STAA member, Fine is the new Director of Broadcasting/Media Relations for the Reading Royals.
Reading is the ECHL affiliate of the Philadelphia Flyers.
Fine moves the Pennsylvania from the Tri-City Storm of the United States Hockey League, where he served in a similar capacity for the past two seasons. Prior to that, Fine spent four seasons on the broadcast crew for the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League.
“The Royals are eagerly anticipating David’s arrival in Reading,” said Ray Melcher, the Chief Operating Office and General Manager of the Royals. “He has done a wonderful job in the USHL over the past two seasons, and we’re confident that he will bring his strong broadcasting skill set, as well as his genuine enthusiasm and energy to the Royals’ broadcasts this season.”
“I want to thank Mr. Melcher, Mr. Gulati and the Royals’ organization for this fantastic opportunity,” Fine said. “I’m excited to carry on the great broadcasting tradition here in Reading and cannot wait to get started.”
In two years with Tri-City, Fine, 24, handled the duties in the broadcast booth for the team’s only run to the Clark Cup Championship in 2016. He was selected to work the USHL/NHL Top Prospects Game as a broadcaster twice by the league. Prior to his time with the Storm, Fine broadcasted minor league baseball in 2015 with the Lansing Lugnuts. A 2015 graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, Fine spent four years (2011-15) with the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League as assistant director of broadcasting and also was a part of the broadcast team for Syracuse University football, basketball and lacrosse at WAER 88.3 FM in Syracuse. He is a native of Bloomfield, New Jersey.
(October 5, 2017) Joe DiMaggio famously explained the reason he consistently played so hard is because someone might be watching him for the first time. A similar mindset has landed STAA member Brendan Gulick a sports update anchor job at CBS Radio in Cleveland.
“Joining the team at 92.3 The Fan is a great opportunity,” Gulick, a Cleveland native, smiles. “They are very well-respected locally and I’m learning that there are lots of ways to build your career. Everyone’s journey is different, but I think there is something to be said for trying to lay your foundation in a bigger market.”
Since graduating from John Carroll University in 2013, Gulick has been broadcasting minor league baseball, college and high school play-by-play on platforms from radio and Internet to ESPN3.
“Most of my opportunities came outside of the Cleveland market after I graduated” says Gulick. “I moved eight times in four years as I bounced between seasonal baseball and college athletics jobs to build up my work experience. I came back to Cleveland in November, 2016 and have been balancing a number of different things.”
The opportunity to move to sports talk radio came as a surprise.
“A few months ago, the former GM of my college radio station (WJCU) asked if I would be willing to help out over the summer while their kids were away on break,” Gulick explains.
He ended up doing several shows. “Luckily, one of those shows re-aired several weeks later and [92.3 The Fan Program Director] Andy Roth happened to hear it. It was certainly a stroke of good fortune,” Gulick grins.
Roth contacted Gulick and eventually offered him a job. “It just reinforces the old adage – always do your best work because you never know who is listening,” he says.
Gulick appreciates that versatility can lead to a long career.
“My experience has primarily been in play-by-play since I began my career and it’s no secret that I love broadcasting live events. But as anyone in this industry knows, you have to be versatile if you’re going to build a career in sports broadcasting.
“I’m trying to diversify my experience as much as I can and I want to build my credibility in the Cleveland market. I’m trying to meet as many people as I can and build quality relationships.”
(October 2, 2017) When the Wichita Falls Wildcats folded after last season season, Alex von Keudell didn’t know where his next hockey broadcasting opportunity might be. Fortunately, he had a friend who was eager to help. Now, von Keudell is the Director of Broadcasting & Media Relations for the Corpus Christi IceRays.
“Collin and I were both up for the Lincoln Stars job,” says von Keudell. “He knew he was a frontrunner and promptly called me to ask if I’d be interested in the Corpus Christi job if he were to leave. We worked together in the South Division for two years, and I was flattered that he trusted me to be his successor.”
When Schuck was hired in Lincoln, he recommended von Keudell to IceRays GM Pat Dunn. A couple days later, von Keudell was offered the job.
A 2015 graduate of Bradley University, von Keudell spent two seasons with Wichita Falls. Prior to that, he was the voice of the Peoria Mustangs. He has mixed emotions about the Wildcats shuttering their organization.
“It was bittersweet,” he says. “All of us could see it coming, so it didn’t come as a surprise. On the one hand, I knew I’d be losing my job. On the other, I knew the next job I’d get would be better, and that I’d get the chance to spend some time with family during the offseason.”
Von Keudell has been an STAA member since 2015. “The sports broadcasting field is extremely competitive and the job search is not very rewarding to people who don’t have help. STAA has given me an edge in receiving job leads, it’s helped improve my cover letters, and it’s helped me to make connections which could come in handy at the most opportune times.”
One of von Keudell’s most important connections is his friendship with Schuck. “I worked in the NAHL South for two years,” von Keudell says. “I already knew some of the staff, I knew the league and the division very well. And I managed to earn Collin Schuck’s respect, which is what ultimately led to me landing the job more than anything else.”
(September 28, 2017) Opportunity often arises suddenly in sports broadcasting. For Collin Schuck, rapidly unfolding developments have led him to the next step in his hockey play-by-play career. An STAA member, Schuck is the new broadcaster and social media manager for the Lincoln Stars of the USHL.
When outgoing Stars’ broadcaster Matthew McGreevy told the organization he was leaving, STAA members were immediately notified of the opening.
“I first saw the job in the STAA Job Leads email on a Friday afternoon,” says Schuck. “With how late the opening came, [the STAA job sheet] was the fastest way to know about it. From there, it was a whirlwind of a process lasting from Sunday to Friday before there was an offer.
“Being an STAA member and getting that email was huge to the fortune I found,” Schuck smiles.
Schuck moves to Lincoln from Corpus Christi, TX where he spent the past three years with the NAHL’s IceRays. Moving to the USHL is a logical career step. “It also provides a new, fresh challenge outside of broadcasting with different expectations in a completely different hockey market and environment with more eyes and ears from higher levels,” he says.
Though Schuck was busy with his IceRays duties when the Lincoln application process started, he made sure to be accessible to the Stars. “Applying quickly and responding quickly to questions from [the Stars] owner and general manager proved beneficial in a time-sensitive situation where the regular season begins in just a few weeks. I needed to be accessible for questions and interviews.”
Schuck is a 2013 graduate of Ithaca College. While in school, he fill-in on radio play-by-play and TV color with the AHL’s Binghamton Senators.
Since joining STAA in 2016, Schuck has come to appreciate the community aspect of STAA.
“There is a lot of valuable information not only from [CEO] Jon Chelesnik but also many broadcasters that are at higher levels and are willing to give their time and thoughts to help those that are looking to further their careers. Those resources are so valuable to have, even just to see what others are doing and how that can help better what you’re already doing.”
Working consistently to improve has paid off for Schuck as he now moves to Lincoln.
“This was the right opportunity at the right time of my life for the right organization. Luckily, it all came to fruition very, very quickly.”
(September 26, 2017) Evan Pivnick was driving 45 minutes outside of Rockford, IL when his phone rang. He was three days from starting a hockey broadcasting internship with the Rockford IceHogs but the phone call changed his plans.
The Adirondack Thunder was calling with a job offer.
Pivnick accepted. He is now the play-by-play broadcaster, and an account executive, for the ECHL team.
It is a remarkable opportunity for someone who is just four months out of college.
“Credit to Rockford’s broadcaster Bob Mills, who was extremely awesome about me having to jump ship three days before I was supposed to start there,” says Pivnick.
2017 has been a quiet off-season for movement among minor league hockey broadcasters. “I was constantly keeping my eye out for the STAA job lead emails,” Pivnick says. “One came on August 21st with the Adirondack job in it, so I applied, texted everyone I knew that might know someone in the Thunder organization and waited from there.
Within days, Pivnick was granted a phone interview, then an in-person interview one week later. The job offer came that weekend, less than four months after Pivnick gradated from Bowling Green State University.
“I was very surprised, to be honest,” Pivnick admits. “I have a few friends who broadcast in the ECHL and they all took a few years between college to work either in the USHL or for a collegiate hockey team before making it here. So for me to be hired right out of college was very humbling, exciting, and surprising.”
Adding to Pivnick’s excitement is the fact that he is a native of Long Island, NY. “I never thought that I would be able to get a profession hockey broadcasting job in New York State. Being only four hours from home is a big plus.”
The play-by-play experience Pivnick gained at Bowling Green was considerable. “Being able to broadcast hockey there for three seasons, traveling, and being around a team definitely provided me an awesome experience that I couldn’t have gotten if I didn’t go to BGSU.
“Teams are looking for broadcasters that have done a lot of traveling with teams, so being able to go on the road with BG helped me gain that experience.”
Pivnick believes that research was a key reason he landed the Thunder job. “It helped that my dad used to go to games up in Glens Falls back when they were the Adirondack Red Wings and he’s always told me so much about the area and how special of a place it is. So when I applied for the job and prepared for my interviews, I read articles about the town and the history of hockey surrounding it. I’m still learning a lot every day about Glens Falls and I’m excited to learn more.”
Pivnick has been an STAA member since 2016. “STAA helps legitimize my candidacy when applying for jobs,” he says. “When someone mentions STAA, it is taken seriously. It also is the best way to be in the know about what is going on in the sportscasting world with the daily emails and the forums. Also, the network of people that STAA offers is second-to-none.”