Frischmon brings heart from the heartland

by Bailey Maio and John Neenan || AHL On The Beat Archive

frischmon2_200.jpgWith Minnesota’s cold winters and hot summers, the move from Ham Lake to Syracuse, at least climate-wise, wasn’t very difficult for Syracuse Crunch center Trevor Frischmon.

Growing up, he remembers watching his two older brothers play hockey and always wanting to be like them. Since strapping on his first pair of skates at age 2 he has done nothing except nurture his love for the game.

After three years of skating around on his family’s backyard rink, Frischmon finally picked up a stick and started to play hockey. As he grew, he began to practice every day after school and on the pond. With many hours of practice under his belt, he progressed and played for numerous teams as a kid.

During the summers, he traveled all across North America to play in various tournaments. As the years progressed, so did his success in hockey.

“One of the best memories is winning the Minnesota State Championship my senior year in high school. That was a really big thing, especially in Minnesota,” he says.

That championship wasn’t his last, as many more were in store for Frischmon.

After high school, he went on to play junior hockey for the Lincoln Stars of the United States Hockey League (USHL). During his time in Nebraska, his team won two league championships. As Frischmon matured and made the transition to college hockey, he didn’t know that more success was in store for him and his teammates at Colorado College.

The Colorado College Tigers claimed two Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) regular season championships during Frischmon’s time there. During his freshman year the team found success, winning the WCHA regular-season title. However, the 2003-04 season was not as triumphant, as the team’s bid for a second straight WCHA title fell short.

Frischmon’s junior year in 2004-05 saw the Tigers return to form and capture another regular-season conference championship. Frischmon put together his best collegiate season, notching 26 points (10g, 16a) while finishing sixth on the team in scoring.

As he recalls his college days, he says he would love to play with his buddies again. Some have even made it into the pros and played against the Syracuse Crunch. While facing the Chicago Wolves, Frischmon gets to once again play on the same ice with two former Colorado College teammates, Joey Crabb and former AHL Rookie of the Year, Brett Sterling.

He would also love to get a chance to strap on his skates again with his pal Mark Stuart, a defenseman for the Boston Bruins.

After college, Frischmon split the 2006-07 season between the Crunch and their ECHL affiliate at the time, the Dayton Bombers. He contributed 13 points (5g, 8a) in 24 games with the Bombers, but eventually earned a spot on the Crunch’s roster, skating in 33 games and notching seven assists. It was this season that made Frischmon feel like he could play the pro game and make that jump to the next level.

Unfortunately, he suffered a setback just four games into the 2007-08 season when his goal of sticking on the Syracuse roster fell apart. Frischmon was back in the ECHL, this time with the Charlotte Checkers, where he posted five points (1g, 4a) in seven games. The Crunch kept him on their radar, and when an injury created an open roster spot, another opportunity came knocking on his door.

This time, Frischmon made no mistake and cemented himself into the lineup, signing back-to-back tryout contracts before earning an AHL deal on Feb. 23, 2008.

frischmon2_200.jpgMost people are not born with the on-ice vision of Wayne Gretzky or the pure offensive gifts that you see in some of today’s best players like Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin; Trevor Frischmon is no exception. Although not a gifted scorer, he is so valuable because of his honest, hard-working, blood-and-guts style of play. His outstanding defensive ability landed him a spot on the Crunch’s top penalty killing unit last season. His all-out approach on every shift led the Crunch to the fifth best penalty-killing percentage in the league. He is also very strong in the face-off circle, an underrated part of the game.

Even with the faster pace in the AHL, he recalls his transition being easy because his game translated well to a higher level. With two years under his belt with the Crunch, Frischmon has already compiled a number of memories. When asked about playing for the Crunch, he could only say positive things.

“The guys on the team are great – everybody gets along on and off the ice. We work well together. The fans are great. The atmosphere in the War Memorial is fantastic and the fans are in the game.”

Some of his favorite memories with the Crunch are last season’s team and the 15-game winning streak to close out the regular season. But the memory that sticks out most for him was his series-clinching goal in overtime of Game 6 vs. Manitoba in the North Division Semifinals, one of the most memorable goals in Crunch history.

Like all hockey players, Frischmon has both personal and team goals for this season.

“I would really like to contribute more offensively,” he says. “With two years here already, I will be one of the more experienced guys on the team. Also, I need to be more of a leader. This will help both the team and me offensively.”

As far as goals for the team go he recalls the disappointing ending to the 2007-08 season. Making the playoffs is one of the main goals for the Crunch. After making the playoffs last year, he wants the team to go even further this season and hopefully bring a Calder Cup championship to Syracuse.

Although hockey has always been a main aspect in Frischmon’s life, it isn’t the only thing he enjoys. He likes to golf and hang out with teammates and friends. He says he has an idea of what he would have done if he wasn’t playing professional hockey. “My dad owns his own business so I think I would probably be working for him. One of my older brothers works for him now.”

With great teammates and superb fans, another championship appears to be in grasp for Trevor Frischmon.