For any sports team, reaching a pinnacle of success is a dream that every player, coach, and fan holds dear. For Holy Cross College, that dream is quickly becoming a reality. Over the past few years, the college’s hockey team has emerged as a force to be reckoned with in the college hockey world. With a record-breaking season in 2018 and a continued upward trajectory, Holy Cross is establishing itself as a dynasty in the making. So how did this small Jesuit college in Massachusetts achieve this level of success? Let’s find out.
Established in 1843, Holy Cross College has a long-standing tradition in athletics, including a strong hockey program. However, it wasn’t until the arrival of head coach David Berard in 2014 that the team’s fortunes began to change. Under Berard’s leadership, the team has steadily improved, culminating in a record-breaking 2018 season.
With a record of 27-1-4, the Holy Cross Crusaders made history by winning the Atlantic Hockey regular-season championship for the first time in program history. They also earned the top spot in the national rankings for the first time and secured their first NCAA tournament bid. This remarkable achievement was the result of a team effort, with standout performances from players like goaltender Paul Berrafato and forward Ryan Ferrill.
But success on the ice wasn’t the only reason behind the team’s impressive rise. The program has also seen a steady increase in fan support and engagement. The Crusaders have one of the highest attendance rates in college hockey, with die-hard fans filling the stands and creating a lively atmosphere for every game. This increase in fan support has not only boosted team morale but has also garnered attention from the national hockey community.
Aside from their on-ice success, Holy Cross also prides itself on its academic achievements. The team has consistently ranked as one of the top programs in the country for student-athlete graduation rates. This focus on academic excellence is a key factor in attracting top-tier players to the program.
Another factor contributing to the team’s success is their commitment to community service. The players regularly participate in volunteer work and community outreach programs, strengthening their bond as a team and instilling values of teamwork both on and off the ice. This dedication to giving back to their community has not gone unnoticed, as the team has been recognized with numerous awards and commendations for their efforts.
Holy Cross has also made strategic investments in their facilities and resources for the team. The Hart Center, the college’s main athletic facility, received a $92 million renovation, including a state-of-the-art hockey arena. This investment has not only provided a superior training facility for the team, but it has also attracted top recruits and elevated the program’s reputation.
Looking ahead, the future seems bright for Holy Cross hockey. With a strong coaching staff, a talented and dedicated team, and a supportive community behind them, there is no doubt that this program will continue to thrive. The team’s recent success has put them on the map and established them as a dominant force in the college hockey landscape.
Holy Cross Hockey has come a long way since the arrival of Coach Berard in 2014. The program’s commitment to excellence both on and off the ice, strong leadership, and investments in facilities and resources have all contributed to their rise as a powerhouse in college hockey. With a dynasty in the making, there is no limit to what this determined and ambitious team can achieve in the future.