Broadmoor World Arena, home of the Colorado College men's hockey team since 1998. The Tigers plan to move into a new arena being built on campus in 2021. Photo courtesy of Broadmoor World Arena
In terms of prestige or historical dominance in hockey, Colorado College doesn’t quite stack up with the University of Denver (the Pioneers are winners of eight national championships) but that doesn’t mean the program, which has been around since 1938, hasn’t had some significant moments or even produced dominant players from time to time — especially in the 1950s when the Tigers were a national powerhouse.
The Tigers, who call Broadmoor World Arena in Colorado Springs home, at least for the time being, are winners of two NCAA national championships (1950 and 1957). They compete at the Division I level in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC) with the Pioneers of Denver, and they’ve been to 10 Frozen Fours and 20 NCAA national tournaments, including five tourneys in seven years in the 1950s.
Winning seasons over the last decade, however, have been few and far between for the Tigers. Colorado College made six national tournaments in the 2000s but just one since (2011). But there’s reason for optimism: Tiger hockey is scheduled to move back on campus in 2021 with the completion of the new Ed Robson Ice Hockey Arena, marking the first time in 80 years the Tigers will skate their home games on campus grounds.
Without further ado, below are the Colorado Hockey Hub’s top five hockey players in Colorado College history.
A native of Highlands Ranch, Bachman spent only two seasons with the Tigers in Colorado Springs but that was plenty of time to make his mark. He started his career with one of the best seasons for a goaltender in Tigers’ history in 2007-08, posting a .931 save percentage and 1.85 goals-against average, becoming the second player in Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA) history to win Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year honors in the same season. He was equally solid his sophomore year, posting a .914 save percentage before signing with the Dallas Stars after the season.
Before he was a Stanley Cup winner with the St. Louis Blues in 2019, Schwartz came up big for Colorado College in some key moments. After helping the Tigers to an NCAA Division I national tournament appearance in 2011, he recorded two goals and a pair of assists to help take down top-seeded Boston College in the first round as a freshman. As a sophomore, he led Colorado College in points despite missing six games for the World Junior Tournament. Schwartz recorded 88 total points in 60 games played in a Tigers sweater. He signed with St. Louis after that season (he was drafted by the Blues No. 14 overall in 2010).
The program’s first of two Hobey Baker Award winners (the other being Marty Sertich in 2005) — given to the top player in NCAA hockey each year — Sejna was an elite offensive talent from the center position in his three years at Colorado College. He capped his Tigers career with a spectacular 2002-03 season in which he tallied 82 points in 42 games. His first two years weren’t anything to scoff at either, as he put up at least 50 points in each of his freshman and sophomore seasons. Throughout his career, the Tigers went 84-33-9 overall while taking home a conference championship in his final year with the team.
Before suiting up for Colorado College, Hay was a center playing junior hockey who was looking for a college opportunity. So as anyone would do, he hitchhiked from Saskatchewan, Canada, to Colorado Springs to talk himself into a scholarship. Given the unlikely opportunity, his career took off. He was a key contributor for the Tigers, helping the team to a national championship in 1957. Hay was named to the all-tournament team that year after recording 73 points. He followed that with an 80-point campaign the following season and he went on to have an eight-year career in the NHL with Chicago, producing two 20-goal seasons, and he won a Stanley Cup with the Black Hawks (they weren’t yet redubbed the Blackhawks) in 1961.
A native of Swan Lake, Manitoba, Hartwell is Colorado College’s all-time leader in goals, racking up 112 from 1949 to 1952. Along the way, the winger helped the Tigers to their first national championship in his first season with the team. He scored four times in two tournament games that year, contributing to Colorado College’s title run. In three seasons he tallied 170 total points. Unlike the other names on this list, Hartwell’s hockey career concluded with him hanging up his Tigers jersey for the last time. After graduating, he became a geologist and worked in the oil industry until he retired in 1997.
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