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Ciskie out, Cloquet's Papas in as UMD men's hockey voice

The Minnesota Duluth men's hockey program has its third radio play-by-play voice in four years after Midwest Communications eliminated Bruce Ciskie's position as sports director on Monday.

The Minnesota Duluth men's hockey program has its third radio play-by-play voice in four years after Midwest Communications eliminated Bruce Ciskie's position as sports director on Monday.

Ciskie, 31, had been UMD's play-by-play man for more than three years, taking over for Kerry Rodd two games into the 2005-06 season when Rodd left KDAL radio after having differences with Midwest Communications management. Ciskie, who lives in Proctor, had been with the company for 12 years.

Midwest Communications operations manager Jack Lawson said Tuesday that the company is de-emphasizing sports and moving more toward news and talk radio. Because of that change, Ciskie's position was terminated, Lawson said. However, Lawson said Ciskie "was a professional, hard-working employee and a first-class guy."

Jeff Papas, 43, of Cloquet has been contracted on a per-game basis and will do the remaining 22 UMD regular-season games, and playoffs, on 102.5 FM, KHQG. He has been in the Duluth media market for 20 years and worked in TV sports and news at KDLH-TV (1988-92) and KBJR-TV (1992-96). He's also done Cloquet-Esko-Carlton High School hockey on cable access television since 1992, and has been the DECC public address announcer for UMD women's hockey since the program began. He also did University of Minnesota men's hockey play-by-play on the school's student station from 1983-88.

"I've waited for the chance at a Division I broadcasting opportunity and I'm excited about this chance," said Papas, marketing manager for Members Cooperative Credit Union in Cloquet.

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He'll begin with the Bulldogs on Friday and Saturday at Colorado College. Earlier this season, UMD hockey was moved from KDAL, 610 AM, after 49 years, to the FM dial.

UMD sports information director Bob Nygaard said the school has a one-year agreement with Midwest Communications for its sports, including men's hockey. Neither he nor Lawson would speculate on a future relationship between UMD and Midwest Communications.

UMD men's hockey coach Scott Sandelin said he was disappointed to learn that Ciskie was no longer with Midwest Communications.

"He had really become an excellent play-by-play announcer, who was passionate and knowledgeable about college hockey," said Sandelin.

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