Hockey is more than just a sport; it is a way of life. The intense competition, the skilled players, and the passionate fans make it one of the most beloved sports in North America. And when it comes to hockey rivalries, there are few teams that have a history as rich and storied as Colgate.
Founded in 1900, Colgate University’s hockey program has a long and illustrious history. The team, known as the Colgate Raiders, is the oldest team in the ECAC Hockey League and has produced countless talented players over the years. But what truly sets the Raiders apart is their intense and longstanding rivalries with other top hockey programs.
In this article, we will take a trip down memory lane and revisit some of Colgate‘s most important matchups throughout their history. From fierce battles on the ice to unforgettable moments, these games have helped shape the legacy of Colgate hockey and continue to fuel the passion of their devoted fans.
Yale: The Beginnings of a Rivalry
The rivalry between Colgate and Yale dates back to the 1920s, making it one of the longest-running in college hockey. It all began in 1922, when Yale beat Colgate 2-1 in their first-ever meeting. The competition between the two teams only intensified from that point on.
Over the years, the two teams have faced off in several memorable games, with each vying for dominance in the ECAC league. One of the most iconic matchups between the two was in 1952, when Yale handed Colgate a 13-0 defeat, their largest loss in program history. But the Raiders bounced back, and in 2016, they defeated Yale 2-1 in a thrilling overtime victory, reminding everyone that this rivalry is far from over.
Cornell: A Battle for New York
The rivalry between Colgate and Cornell is a classic case of neighboring teams competing for bragging rights. As two top programs in New York State, the competition between the Raiders and the Big Red is always fierce, and their matchups have been closely contested over the years.
The rivalry truly took off in the 1980s when Colgate and Cornell battled it out in the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) championship game for three consecutive years. But it was in 2004 that the rivalry reached new heights. Cornell won the conference title that year, but Colgate exacted revenge by defeating them in the NCAA tournament, earning their first-ever win against Cornell in the postseason.
Harvard: A Battle of Prestige
The rivalry between Colgate and Harvard is one of prestige and tradition. Both schools are known for their stellar academic programs and high-caliber hockey teams, making their matchups even more intense.
Their rivalry dates back to the 1920s, when the two teams first faced off. But it was in the 1980s when tensions between the two schools reached their peak. The 1983 ECAC championship game, dubbed the Miracle on Ice, saw the Raiders defeat Harvard in a fantastic comeback performance. The two teams have continued to battle for top spots in the ECAC league ever since, making their matchups a must-watch for any hockey fan.
Boston University: A Clash of Titans
The rivalry between Colgate and Boston University is relatively new, beginning in 1976 when the two teams first met on the ice. But what makes this rivalry so special is the level of talent and success both teams have achieved over the years.
Both Colgate and Boston University have produced several NHL players and have won multiple conference titles. And when these two top teams meet, it’s always an intense and closely contested battle. In 2019, Colgate pulled off an upset victory against Boston University in the first round of the NCAA tournament, making it one of the most memorable clashes between the two teams.
Conclusion: A Legacy of Passion and Competition
As we look back on some of Colgate’s most important matchups, it becomes clear that their storied history is a testament to their passion for the sport and their unrelenting competitive spirit. Their rivalries with some of the top programs in North America have helped shape the legacy of Colgate Hockey, and the team’s unwavering dedication to the game continues to captivate the hearts of fans.
Whether it’s their rivalry with Yale, Cornell, Harvard, or Boston University, one thing is for sure: Colgate Hockey remains a force to be reckoned with. And as the team continues to push the boundaries and add to their legacy, one can’t help but wonder what other great matchups and unforgettable moments are in store for this prestigious program.