PRINCETON, N.J. – The ECHL announced on Friday that Matt Nevala of The Anchorage Daily News is the 2005-06 recipient of the ECHL Outstanding Media Award.
The award is determined in a vote of league media members, media relations directors and broadcasters.
Nevala has been the beat writer for the Alaska Aces for each of their three seasons in the ECHL and he has covered the team for 10 seasons, beginning when the team was the Anchorage Aces in the West Coast Hockey League. The 34-year-old began working for newspapers when he was a 16-year-old high school sophomore, sacrificing weekend nights to collect boxscores and briefs for his hometown Kalamazoo (Mich.) Gazette. After receiving his bachelor’s degree in English from Western Michigan University in 1995, Nevala accepted a job at the Greenville (Mich.) Daily News. He moved to Alaska in late 1995 and began working full-time at the ADN a year later. He lives in Anchorage with his wife, Kristen, and their daughter, Margaret (2).
“I must first thank my team of Anchorage Daily News’ co-workers, who make my job fun and rewarding. Without them, who knows what I might misspell,” said Nevala. “I also need to thank everyone associated with the Alaska Aces, but especially coach Davis Payne, director of communications Jack Michaels and all the players. They give me the access and assistance I need, and hopefully I deliver the readers an inside look at the team that they can’t get anywhere else.
“I’ve loved the game of hockey since my dad first put me in skates some 30 years ago and to work around it on a daily basis is an honor in itself,” he added. “It’s hard to believe I’m being singled out among the abundance of talented ECHL media members I have so much respect for.”
ECHL Outstanding Media Award Winners
Year Recipient Media Outlet
2005-06 Matt Nevala The Anchorage Daily News
2004-05 Mike Mastovich The Tribune-Democrat
2003-04 Len Bardsley The Times of Trenton
2002-03 Dave Eminian Peoria Journal Star