The fast-approaching 2001-02 Rensselaer mens hockey season will mark the programs 100th year in action and hockey coach Dan Fridgens veteran squad hopes to emulate some of the accomplishments of years gone by.
Were certainly looking forward to this year in building from last seasons experiences and past accomplishments, Fridgen says.
It all began in the 1901-02 school year in Cohoes, N.Y., where Rensselaer played (and lost, 1-0) its first game against Williams College. The program climbed to Division I status in the 1949-50 season. Twice Rensselaer reached the pinnacle of the college hockey world, winning the NCAA National Championship in 1954 and again in 1985.
This years team has equally lofty goals, as 21 players return from last years squad. Among the returning players are seven National Hockey League draftees, including high-scoring forwards Matt Murley and Marc Cavosie, defensemen Danny Eberly and Francois Senez, and goalie Nathan Marsters. In addition, Steve Munn, a hard-hitting blueliner, is one of eight seniors back to lace them up at the Houston Field House.
Marsters, a sophomore, was Rensselaers Most Valuable Player last year after ranking among the top goalies in the United States in several categories. Murley, a senior, also was among the top goal scorers in the nation last year while senior Jim Vickers, Rensselaers Most Improved Player Award winner, was listed with the top scoring defensemen in all of U.S. college hockey.
Fridgen, who returns to coach his eighth season, will work to mold his eight seniors, six juniors, seven sophomores, and five freshmen into a team that has set its sights on competing in the Eastern College Athletic Conference Championship and earning another bid to the NCAA Tournament.
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), 110 8th St., Troy, NY 12180. (518) 276-6000