THE PUCK CHASERS - BARRY STEVENSON (Glasgow
Ice Hockey Herald No xx Article
It takes guts to play a game like ice hockey.
To skate around at up ,to thirty miles an hour knowing that at any second you can be dumped on the
ice or against the boards, crash full tilt into an opponent, or get cut by a stick or a skate blade. Like every hockey player throughout the world, Barry Stevenson has
that kind of guts. But Barry also has another kind of guts -a very special kind. To
explain, lets go back to 1965, the year that Dynamos were formed, and the year Barry started playing
hockey. There are a few -a veryfew- boys who have a natural ability for the game. Barry was not
one of these; his assets were his speed on skates, and a grim determination to succeed. In those early years success looked far away. While contemporaries like Tommy Taylor
and Alan Lavety adapted quickly, and became leading lights in the side, Barry struggled to co-ordinate
his skating speed with the basic elements of stickhandling and shooting. He had many critics, both
inside and outside the Dynamo camp. He'll never make it, was the general verdict, and some of the more unkind souls laughed and made fun of his efforts. But there's an old
saying about "he who laughs last". Barry.is the one doing the laughing nowadays, and that is where
that special kind of guts has paid off -the guts that are needed -to persevere in the face of ridicule,
with the odds all against you. Barry stuck in. He never missed a practice for three
years, and slowly but surely he improved, until now he is rated among the top half-dozen left wingers
in the country.
This season he has arrived, and has contributed
much to Dynamos' success. The pay-off for all the hard slogging came a fortnight ago in the first
leg of the 'Icy Smith' Cup Final at MUrrayfield, when the name of Barry Stevenson went in alongside the three star's top rating in the hardest game of the season, earned
by an outstanding performance, and three brilliant goals.
Off the ice, Barry is co-partner ~with his
father in a joiners and shop fitters business, but his main interest in life is cars. He is a first
rate mechanic, loves driving as much as he loves tinkering with engines, and changes
his own car often; his present model is a Mini- Cooper'S'. He lives aoout half a mile fromCrossmyloof,
and he and his wife Mary have one daughter, two-year-old Mandy, with an addition to the family expected
this year. He lists ice-cream as his favourite food, and for relaxation likes nothing
better than a 'good going party!'.
Back to hockey, .and although Barry would
like to get into the British team, his main ambition is "to go through each game without getting
any penalties." -.asked him who he found the hardest defenceman to get
past, and with a laugh,he replied "all of them". No doubts, though, about the best goalminder he's
played against -Willie Clark. And as a final question, I put the same poser
I'd given Kenny Matthews recently -what it's like having your elder brother as coach. Barry expressed
similar sentiments to Kenny, but condensed it to one word -"rotten!". Rotten
or not, Robert has played a notable part in the development of his younger brother.