UConn names new hockey facility after Toscano family

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UConn’s new state-of-the-art ice hockey facility. Named after the Toscano family, the facility will be open for use by both Ice Hockey teams and students. Photo from UConn Athletics.

Since construction began last May, a new state-of-the-art ice hockey facility has been built on the University of Connecticut’s Storrs campus.  

The Toscano Family Ice Forum is set to open for the upcoming winter season.  

Previously, the UConn Men’s Hockey team’s home rink was the XL Center in Hartford, Deputy Director of Athletics and External Relations Mike Oblinger said. The women’s team played in a dated facility on campus. Oblinger thinks both teams playing in the new facility will improve the UConn hockey program.  

“It’s a first class ice hockey facility. This rink will be a valuable addition to our student athletes, to our program, our community and our students,” Oblinger stated. “The old facility on campus had fallen behind some of our peers, so our two hockey programs will see the direct benefit of the new one.” 

The facility will not only benefit the players and UConn hockey program but will also appeal to UConn students, UConn Women’s Ice Hockey Head Coach Chris MacKenzie said. 

“It’s going to add a convenient location for our student fans to attend games. Before this season, if they wanted to catch a men’s game it would have had to be in Hartford, but now they can see one right on campus,” MacKenzie said. 

Assistant Athletic Director for Communications Bill Peterson said that without the support and involvement of UConn Board of Trustees Chairman Dan Toscano and his family, the new facility would have never been able to come about.  

“Dan and his family’s commitment to the rink project and our hockey programs has made it become a reality and brought the rink to the finish line where we can soon actually step foot in there,” Peterson said.  

“Dan and his family’s commitment to the rink project and our hockey programs has made it become a reality and brought the rink to the finish line where we can soon actually step foot in there,”

Bill Peterson, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications

Oblinger said that members across the UConn community and administration are thankful for the impact the Toscano family has had on the university. 

“Dan is someone who has donated his time for the benefit of UConn, and his leadership has been very important for the growth of our university outside of his generosity,” Oblinger said. “Again he and his family have stepped up and given the lead gift in helping create this facility, so we thought it was appropriate to name the rink after them.”  

A UConn Today article reports that the facility will be able to hold 2,600 students and fans for the upcoming season. 

“It’s a state of the art facility. It’s something that will have all the bells and whistles that the standard for new arenas have,” Peterson said. “This is a great region of the country to be a hockey fan.” 

Coach MacKenzie is hopeful that the new facility will help grow both hockey programs. 

“In order for the UConn hockey program to take the next step and try to become an elite one, this rink is necessary,” MacKenzie stated.  

“In order for the UConn hockey program to take the next step and try to become an elite one, this rink is necessary,”

Chris MacKenzie, UConn Women’s Ice Hockey Head Coach

Peterson thinks the new facility will bring more students to games which will create a beneficial atmosphere for the athletes.  

“Different fan experiences in different arenas bring a level of excitement and a layer to the game that we haven’t had the chance to experience before the building of this rink,” Peterson said, “The team and the athletics department are most excited about the facility, hopefully creating different hockey specific traditions here.” 

Both the UConn community and surrounding towns will be able to benefit from the facility, MacKenzie said. 

“We’re going to house a youth hockey program called the Connecticut Junior Huskies, who will have access to the rink,” MacKenzie stated. “On campus too, I believe there will be student activities that have involvement with the rink as well.” 

Oblinger is hopeful for the future of the UConn hockey program.  

“The uniqueness of men and women’s ice hockey at UConn and this new facility is going to really bring people out and have them wanting to see these games,” Oblinger said. 

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