The Journal Gazette
Thursday, January 16, 2020 1:00 am

Komets to put 'Doc', 'Shrocky' in Hall of Fame

JUSTIN A. COHN | The Journal Gazette

Mike Emrick has promoted the Komets' brand internationally as the voice of hockey on NBC. Lincoln Kaleigh Schrock was the rare hometown player to suit up for the Komets, helping them to two championships and captaining them from late 2013 until his retirement in 2015.

Both will be inducted into the Komets' Hall of Fame on March 7, before the team faces the Kalamazoo Wings.

Their admittance will grow the Hall of Fame, which was founded in 1988, to 53 members representing team personnel, executive builders and media.

Emrick, a native of La Fontaine and a Manchester College graduate, grew up a fan of the Komets and was mentored by longtime broadcaster Bob Chase. He began his career in 1973, has worked the telecasts of 31 consecutive Stanley Cup playoffs and is expected to call his 22nd Stanley Cup Final this year.

He often talks about the Komets, and other teams from around minor league hockey, throughout his broadcasts.

It was a wish of Chase, who died in 2016, that Emrick would be inducted into the Komets' Hall of Fame.

“Mike Emrick's career as a world class broadcaster started here in Indiana,” Komets President Michael Franke said. “His relationship with his mentor, Bob Chase, lasted decades until Bob's passing. A Komet fan from the start, 'Doc' has become the greatest ambassador of minor-league hockey in North America with his national broadcasting of pro hockey on NBC.”

Emrick, who has won six national Emmy awards for excellence in sports broadcasting, was the first media member to be inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame, is one of six from the media to have won the Lester Patrick Award for contributions to hockey in the U.S. (something Chase also won), and has won the Hockey Hall of Fame's Foster Hewitt Memorial Award for contributions in radio or TV.

On his induction, Emrick said in a press release: “That a Komets fan for 60 seasons, except for four when I was the (rival) Port Huron Flags' announcer, could be nominated by his icon Bob Chase and that the nomination could be carried forth by the Franke family, who rescued and preserved the Komet franchise, and that I was informed in front of several Komet Hall of Famers I cheered for ... I have no words to finish this sentence. March 7 will be a wonderful lifetime memory.”

Schrock, who coaches the Fort Wayne Spacemen junior hockey team, played 439 games with the Komets and totaled 81 goals, 152 points and 854 penalty minutes as a hard-hustling fan-favorite over six seasons.

A product of Fort Wayne's youth hockey programs, he played for Snider before leaving Fort Wayne for junior hockey. He captained Neumann University to a Division III national championship before helping the Komets to an International Hockey League championship in 2009-10, when he was named the team's Rookie of the Year. He also helped the Komets to the Central Hockey League title in 2011-12.

Between 2015 and 2019, he worked as the head of athlete development and oversaw youth programs at the SportONE/Parkview Icehouse; was youth program director and assistant arena manager at Trine University's rink in Angola; and coached the Summit City Panthers to a state high school championship. 

“Kaleigh Schrock symbolized what it meant to play the Komet way,” general manager David Franke said. “His hustle, grit and physical play made him a special player on our teams and to our loyal fans. Kaleigh brought it all every night. Schrocky will always have a place in Komet history as he now enters the Komet Hall of Fame.”

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