Long-time trainer key to Portage Terriers success

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Long-time trainer key to Portage Terriers success
Long-time trainer key to Portage Terriers success – Apr 25, 2017

PORTAGE LA PRAIRIE, Man. — Running a successful hockey team takes experience. Luckily for the MJHL’s Portage Terriers, Geno Romanow has more than 40 years of it.

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The equipment manager and trainer joined the team during the 1970s. For the now 75-year-old, it was a way to get his hockey fix having never played the sport.

“I couldn’t skate,” Romanow said. “I had wobbly ankles. I’m here for the love of it.”

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For years, Romanow juggled his career at TransCanada Pipeline and side gig with the Terriers. Even though he calls it a job, Romanow’s stint with the team has been mostly on a volunteer basis. To thank the trainer for his time, the Terriers named an award after him. It’s given out every year to the player who exemplifies Romanow’s dedication.

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“He just really cares about you,” Terriers captain Riley Thiessen said.

A trait that’s earned Romanow the nickname Grandpa Geno along with the love of all the players.

“I don’t have a favourite,” Romanow said. “If I said I had one, they would all jump on me.”

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Romanow’s age has started to catch up with him. Long bus rides cause his back to hurt. But despite the pain, retirement isn’t on his game plan.

“It keeps me motivated,” Romanow said. “Keeps me alive. Something to do really.”

Especially during the dog days of winter.

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