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Denver Pioneers

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Denver Pioneers
Denver Pioneers
Institution University of Denver
Location Denver, CO
School Founded 1864
Enrollment 9,800
Colors Crimson and Gold
Chancellor Robert Coombe
Athletic Director Peg Bradley-Doppes
Rink Magness Arena
Capacity 6,026
Dimensions 200'x85'
Men's Coach George Gwozdecky (Wisconsin '78)
NCAA Championships 1958, 1960, 1961, 1968, 1969, 2004, 2005
WCHA Championships MacNaughton Cup (Men's Regular Season): 1959-60, 1961-62, 1962-63, 1967-68, 1971-72, 1972-73, 1977-78, 1985-86, 2001-02, 2004-05Broadmoor Trophy (Men's WCHA Tournament): 1963, 1964, 1986, 1999, 2002, 2005
Major Rivals Colorado College

The Denver Pioneers are a Men's Division I team in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

The University of Denver began playing ice hockey in 1949 in a surplus WWII naval drill hall that had been re-purposed into the 5,200 seat DU Arena, where the Pioneers would play up until 1997.

The Pioneers went 4-13 that first season, but soon became a competitve program, and in 1956, the hiring of legendary coach Murray Armstrong would make the Pioneers the dominant program in NCAA hockey during the 1960s.

Armstrong's teams won 5 NCAA titles (58, 60, 61, 68 and 69) with a steady pipeline of talented players, mostly from Western Canada. The greatest of these teams was the 1960-61 DU team that went 30-1-1, and won the NCAA Championship Game 12-2, the largest margin of victory in history. Other highlights of the 60s included a victory and a tie against the 1960 U.S. and Soviet Olympic teams, respectively, as well as the 1968-69 Denver NCAA Championship team, led by future NHLers Keith Magnuson, Cliff Korroll and Craig Patrick, which defeated Ken Dryden's Cornell team in the title game, 4-3.

The Pioneers fielded many strong teams in the 1970s, and a several in the 1980s and 90s, but were unable to claim another NCAA crown until 2004, when the Pioneers defeated Maine 1-0 in a memorable title run under coach George Gwozdecky. The Pioneers proved the title was no fluke when they repeated as Champions in 2005 with a 4-1 win over North Dakota.

Today, the Pioneers play to sellout crowds of 6,000+ in Magness Arena, part of a $75 million sports complex that was completed in 2000.

Current head coachEdit

George Gwozdecky [1]

  • The only coach in NCAA history to win a hockey national title as a player, assistant coach and head coach.
  • Gwozdecky-coached teams have reached the NCAA Tournament (including the 1992-93 Miami team) in seven of the last 15 years.
  • Captured ten Denver Cup titles
  • Gwozdecky holds a 461-319-61 (.580) record in 21 seasons as a Head Coach.
  • Gwozdecky sports a 394-289-59 (.566) record coaching Division I programs over 18 seasons
  • Gwozdecky has won two Spencer Penrose Awards as the National Coach of the Year.

Coaching recordsEdit

Coach Years Wins Losses Ties
Murry Armstrong* 1956 to 1977 463 215 31
George Gwozdecky 1994 to 2013 311 195 40
Ralph Backstrom 1981 to 1990 182 174 14
Marshall Johnston 1977 to 1981 89 63 7
Neil Celley 1951 to 1956 82 43 6
Frank Serratore 1990 to 1994 49 92 9
Vern Turner 1949 to 1951 15 24 1

"*Ranks 18th All-Time in NCAA Division I Wins"

Current Roster Edit

As of August 20, 2010. [1]

Goaltenders
# State Player Catches Year Hometown Previous Team
1 Flag of Alberta Sam Brittain L Freshman Calgary, Alberta Canmore (AJHL)
28 Flag of Connecticut Josh Rosenholtz L Senior Ridgefield, Connecticut Proctor Academy
33 Flag of Alaska Adam Murray L Sophomore Anchorage, Alaska US NTDP (USHL)
Defensemen
# State Player Shoots Year Hometown Previous Team
3 Flag of Colorado Jon Cook R Senior Denver, Colorado Camrose (AJHL)
4 Flag of Oklahoma Matt Donovan L Sophomore Edmond, Oklahoma Cedar Rapids (USHL)
5 Flag of Minnesota John Lee R Junior Moorhead, Minnesota Waterloo (USHL)
6 Flag of Colorado Chris Nutini L Senior Centennial, Colorado Wichita Falls (NAHL)
7 Flag of Illinois Paul Phillips L Sophomore Darien, Illinois Cedar Rapids (USHL)
10 Flag of Missouri David Makowski R Freshman Wildwood, Missouri Green Bay (USHL)
20 Flag of Minnesota Joey Brehm L Senior Edina, Minnesota Edina High School
21 Flag of Alaska William Wrenn R Sophomore Anchorage, Alaska US NTDP (USHL)
24 Flag of Colorado John Ryder L Senior Colorado Springs, Colorado Ohio (USHL)
Forwards
# State Player Shoots Year Hometown Previous Team
8 Flag of Nebraska Dustin Jackson R Junior (RS) Omaha, Nebraska Southern Minnesota (NAHL)
9 Flag of California Beau Bennett R Freshman Gardena, California Penticton (BCHL)
11 Flag of Colorado Chris Knowlton R Sophomore Colorado Springs, Colorado Des Moines (USHL)
14 Flag of Alberta Jesse Martin R Senior Edmonton, Alberta Tri-City (USHL)
15 Flag of Colorado Drew Shore R Sophomore Denver, Colorado US NTDP (USHL)
16 Flag of Michigan Anthony Maiani L Senior Shelby Township, Michigan Sioux City (USHL)
17 Flag of Nevada Jason Zucker L Freshman Las Vegas, Nevada US NTDP (USHL)
18 Flag of Colorado Luke Salazar R Junior Thornton, Colorado Wichita Falls (NAHL)
19 Flag of Alberta Kyle Ostrow L Senior Calgary, Alberta Nanaimo (BCHL)
22 Flag of Illinois Jarrod Mermis L Freshman Alton, Illinois Lincoln (USHL)
23 Flag of Colorado Nick Shore R Freshman Denver, Colorado US NTDP (USHL)
26 Flag of Alberta Shawn Ostrow R Sophomore Calgary, Alberta Camrose (AJHL)
27 Flag of Wisconsin Dan Olszewski L Sophomore Janesville, Wisconsin St. Louis (NAHL)
37 Flag of Iowa Nate Dewhurst R Junior Johnston, Iowa Des Moines (USHL)


NHL alumniEdit

Retired playersEdit

Forwards/Defenseman
Name Team Seasons GP Goals Assists Points +/- PIM
Keith Magnuson Chicago Blackhawks 10 589 14 125 139 170 1442
Cliff Koroll Chicago Blackhawks 11 814 208 254 462 109 376
Bill Masterton* Minnesota 1 38 4 8 12 (4) 4
Peter McNab Buffalo/Boston/Vancouver/NewJersey 15 954 363 450 813 130 179
Kevin Dineen Hartford/Philadelphia/Carolina/Columbus 21 1188 355 405 760 (23) 2229
Vic Venasky Los Angeles Kings 7 430 61 101 162 (17) 66
Glenn Anderson Edmonton/Toronto/NY Rangers/St. Louis 18 1,129 498 601 1,099 201 1,120
Mike Christie California Seals/CO Rockies/Cleveland/Vancouver 9 412 15 101 116 (97) 550
Marshall Johnston Minnesota/California Seals 7 251 14 52 66 (73) 58
Rich Preston Chicago/New Jersey 8 580 127 164 291 (35) 348
Ed Beers Calgary/St. Louis 6 250 94 116 210 19 256
Bruce Affleck St. Louis/Vancouver 7 280 14 66 80 (82) 86
Craig Patrick* Washington/California Seals 9 401 72 91 163 (131) 61
Craig Redmond Los Angeles/Edmonton 5 191 16 68 84 (57) 134
Erik Andersson Calgary 1 12 2 1 3 (8) 134
Goalies
Name Team Seasons GP Min W L T OT GAA
Ron Grahame Boston/Kings/Quebec 5 114 6,472 50 43 15 0 3.79
Pete LoPresti Minnesota/Edmonton 6 175 9858 43 102 20 0 4.07
  • Bill Masterton, on January 13, 1968, fell to the ice, hitting his head. He died two days later of massive head injuries, becoming the first player to die as a direct result of an injury during an NHL game. The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy is awarded annually to the NHL player who best personifies perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to the game of hockey
  • Craig Patrick was the GM of 1991 & 1992 Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins

Active playersEdit

  • as of 12/19/07
Forwards/Defensemen
Name Team Seasons Games Played Goals Assists Points +/- PIM
Matt Pettinger Washington/Vancouver/Tampa Bay 7 311 52 45 97 (40) 163
Paul Stastny Colorado Avalanche 2 116 43 76 119 18 58
Matt Carle San Jose/Tampa Bay/Philadelphia 3 115 15 39 54 1 52
Antti Laaksonen Boston/Minnesota/Colorado 7 483 81 87 168 (11) 152
Mark Rycroft St. Louis/Colorado 4 226 21 25 46 (9) 113
Goalies
Name Team Seasons Games Played MINS W L T OT GAA SV %
Wade Dubielewicz New York Islanders 4 21 971 8 6 1 0 2.78 .907
Peter Mannino Atlanta Thrashers 2 3 133 1 1 0 0 4.51 .885

ArenasEdit

DU Arena (1948–1997)Edit

University of Denver Arena was a 5,200-seat multi-purpose arena in Denver, Colorado. It was home to the University of Denver Pioneers ice hockey team. It also hosted several Frozen Fours. It was razed in 1997 to make room for the $75 million Magness Arena, (part of the Ritchie Center for Sports and Wellness) which opened in 1999.

Originally a Naval Drill Hall built during World War II in Farragut, Idaho, the DU arena was donated to the University after the war and reassembled on the Denver campus in 1948-49 to house the University's then-new ice hockey program.

The arena was refurbished in 1972-73 when the roof needed repairs, and 14 seven-ton steel trussess were added to shore up the roof. Additional patchwork renovations were added in the 1990s, prior to razing the building in 1997.

The best known features of the arena were the steep bleacher balcony at the south end, and the 1970s rainbow painted on the north end wall. Famous hockey games held there include the NCAA ice hockey finals in 1961, 1964 and 1976.

Magness Arena (1999–present)Edit

The Ritchie CenterMagness Arena is a 7,200-seat multi-purpose collegiate sports arena in Denver, Colorado. It was built in 2000 as part of the Daniel L. Ritchie Center for Sports & Wellness, a $75 million, 400,000-square-foot (37,000 m2) sports complex at the University of Denver. It is home to the University of Denver Pioneers ice hockey and basketball teams. The Ritchie Center replaced the former DU Arena and DU Fieldhouse, which were razed in 1997 to make way for the Ritchie Center. The basketball team also plays smaller games at Hamilton Gymnasium, located in the Ritchie Center.

The arena is named after cable television pioneer Bob Magness, who donated $10 million towards construction costs.


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