Bridgedale Academy Blog

    Mike McPartlin

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    Monday, July 26, 2021

    Behrens and Lopina NHL Drafted

    by Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy

    Seven Bridgedale Grads and Counting


    Bridgedale Academy grads Sean Behrens and Josh Lopina were recently selected in the 2021 National Hockey League Draft. This makes four years of Bridgedale grads (00s, 01s, 02s and 03s) to have been drafted over the last four NHL drafts, bringing the Bridgedale total to seven.

    Sean was selected in the Second Round (#61 Overall) by the Colorado Avalanche, and Josh in the Fourth Round (#98 Overall) by the Anaheim Ducks.

    Sean spent the last two seasons with USA Hockey's National Team Development Program and will suit up for the University of Denver in the fall.

    Josh had a season for the ages last season as a freshman at UMass. First he captured the Hockey East Rookie of the Year honors and then capped things off with UMass's first-ever Division 1 NCAA National Championship. 

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    Wednesday, April 14, 2021

    Josh Lopina - National Champion!

    by Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy

    A Man of Many Firsts


    Last Saturday, Bridgedale Academy grad Josh Lopina and his UMass teammates defeated St. Cloud State to win the NCAA Division 1 National Championship.

    It was the first-ever national championship for the Minutemen, capping off an amazing season.

    And Josh, as the team's second line center and top face-off man, was a major contributing factor in the team's unprecedented success.

    And all this in his first season as a freshman with the team.

    But by now Josh is used to being "first."

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    Wednesday, November 18, 2020

    Private Showings at Bridgedale Academy

    Visit and do some Classroom Observations

    by Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy


    For obvious reasons, Bridgedale will not be hosting any Open Houses this winter.

    Instead, we are offering Private Showings for interested families.

    Schedule your own Bridgedale Academy Private Showing

    Your Own Private Open House Showing

    And so we cordially invite you to have your own “Private Open House.” 

    Take a break from the stress of your son’s e-learning and come to Bridgedale on a day of your choosing.

    See first-hand what makes Bridgedale the perfect option for the serious student hockey-player.

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    Wednesday, September 2, 2020

    2020-21: Bridgedale Offering High School

    Bridgedale Joins w/ K12 Private Academy to offer high school grades!

    By: Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy



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    Friday, July 3, 2020

    Why We Celebrate the 4th of July

    by Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy

    What does it mean to be a nation?


    The word “nation” comes from the root word for “birth.”

    Compare the words natal, nascent, native and nativity; all relate to things being born.

    A nation, therefore, is something that has come into existence - A Nation is Born.

    The United States of America is unique in all of human history.

    It is unique for many reasons, one of which is that, like a human, it has a birth certificate.

    Our nation’s birth certificate is the Declaration of Independence.

    Our character as a nation, imprinted on us at our birth, is embodied in the core principles, in the self-evident truths, stated in the Declaration of Independence.

    These core principles include: 

    that all men are created equal 

    that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights

    that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness

    That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among Men

    deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed 

    That whenever any Form of government becomes destructive of these ends

    it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it


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    Tuesday, June 2, 2020

    2019-20: A School Year for the Ages

    Our Talented, Caring Teachers Crushed it!

    By: Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy


    Parents ecstatic with Bridgedale's distance learning.

    The 2019-20 school year at Bridgedale Academy was truly one for the ages.

    When it became clear in early March that the COVID-19 pandemic was about to have a profound impact on how we do things at Bridgedale Academy, we began making our preparations.

    We pride ourselves on the "dynamic engagement" of our in-person classroom instruction. And with our boys-only environment, and small class-sizes, we especially take pride in how well ALL our boys do academically, and how virtually all of them come to LOVE LEARNING.

    Click here to read Testimonials from Bridgedale Parents

    But a mandated school shutdown meant that we would lose that in-person instruction.

    So what could we possibly do to maintain that same high level of engagement?

    It turns out plenty.

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    Tuesday, March 17, 2020

    Why Checking Skills are so Valuable in Hockey

    One of the Keys to Moving Up the Hockey Pyramid

    by Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy

    A number of years ago I attended a spring AAA Minor Bantam game featuring many excellent players. 

    It was, I knew, one of the very first “checking-allowed” games for both teams. 

    As a longtime AAA bantam coach, I was expecting to see players who were more than anxious to “hit” - but without a clue about how to properly “check.”

    But instead I was very pleasantly surprised.

    Because this game featured two teams with very good checking skills.

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    Friday, February 7, 2020

    An orange is not an apple

    What does this have to do with young athletes?

    By: Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy


    "An orange is not an apple."

    Hmm. Seems pretty obvious.

    After all, an orange is an orange, and an apple is an apple.

    So “what does this have to do with the development of young student-athletes?” you might ask.

    It turns out plenty.

    Plenty, that is, when the student-athlete keeps trying to convince himself that some things are other than what they actually are.

    A thing is what it is.

    One of the most common challenges I deal with as Headmaster at Bridgedale Academy, is getting young student-athletes to deal head-on with the realities they face each day.

    The capacity for youngsters to evade and contrive, and at times even to deceive themselves, never ceases to amaze me.

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    Monday, August 26, 2019

    Top 7 Reasons for a School for Athletes like Bridgedale

    Developing the Entire Student-Athlete

    By Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy


    Enhance your son's athletic and academic performance


    How valuable is a school for athletes that understands and deals straight up with the fact that boys need physical activity, on a daily basis, and that getting that physical activity improves their academics?

    What if that same school offers its student-athletes a classical education?

    What if that school actually encourages the boys to be competitive? Won't that yield benefits that go above and beyond just sports and academics?

    Boys learn better, boys excel, in such an environment. And the benefits can last a lifetime.

    So let’s get to it. What follows are my 7 top reasons for boys to attend a school for athletes like Bridgedale Academy.

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    Wednesday, July 17, 2019

    3 Bridgedale Grads Phase 2 USHL Drafted

    Grabko, Glynn & Thiesing Getting Recognized

    by Mike McPartlin, Headmaster, Bridgedale Academy  


    Bridgedale Academy is proud to congratulate 3 of its graduates who were recently drafted in Phase 2 of the USHL Draft. Two of the three, Nicky Grabko and Jimmy Glynn, are 2000 birth year student-athletes and the third, Therien Thiesing, is from Bridgedale's 2003 birth year group.

    “The 2000's and the 03's were both outstanding groups,” said Bridgedale Headmaster Mike McPartlin, "and Nicky, Jimmy and Therien embody those same qualities of being unusually focused and mature at a young age. They are now reaping the benefits from their hard work and dedication. They are not only outstanding athletes, but also fine young men of good character. We are very proud of them and what they already have and will continue to accomplish.” 

    Nicky Grabko

    Nicky, a goaltender, was selected in the 4th Round by the Green Bay Gamblers, the 47th pick overall. Nicky now competes for the Minot Minotauros of the NAHL. He is not yet college committed.

    “Thank you so much for all you did for Nicky. It can be tough for a goalie, but Bridgedale not only gave him the opportunity to train on a regular basis with a goalie instructor, but also he was able to compete on day-to-day with so many other outstanding players.”

    Rob Grabko, Nicky's Dad

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