It's safe to say every college hockey team is thankful for the efforts and sacrifices of the American military. But for most college hockey teams, appreciative as they are, that effort and sacrifice is a bit more an abstract concept. Army and Air Force would be the obvious exceptions. It's also the exception at Michigan Tech, where fourth-string practice goalie Matt Messina is a combat veteran after serving a three-month tour in Afghanistan with the Minnesota Air National Guard.
Messina played high school for Duluth Marshall and Duluth Denfeld prior to joining the National Guard. This year, Messina, a senior majoring in civil engineering, was given the opportunity to join Michigan Tech's team as a practice goalie after Matt Wintjes went down with an injury.
In honor of Veterans Day, Michigan Tech put together this wonderful video on Messina as a way of thanking him for his efforts. It's definitely worth a watch: