Norwich Alumni Hockey Weekend kindles memories

alumni hockey playersNorwich Alumni Hockey Weekend took place on December 2 & 3, 2003. The event drew more than thirty former icemen back to Norwich for two full days of playing, watching and reminiscing about the game of hockey.

For the hockey-playing grads of the early seventies, some of those memories were bittersweet. Saturday morning's Maroon (odd-years) versus White (even-years) "Old-Timers" Game was dedicated this year to the memory of William D. Cahill, who passed away suddenly this fall. Bill, a three-year varsity letterman at Norwich, later returned to "The Hill" as assistant coach for Men's Hockey from 1990-92 before taking over as head coach from 1993-1995. At the time of his death he was the Women's Varsity Ice Hockey Coach at R.P.I.

In three 20-minute periods of non-stop action, graduates representing classes from six decades faced off against each other. When the final buzzer sounded, the Evens had prevailed, 13-7.

In a fitting tribute to his brother, Peter Cahill presented the Cahill Memorial Trophy Cup to the captain of the winning team. Fourteen members of the Cahill Family were in attendance to witness this lasting legacy of Bill's service to Norwich and his love of hockey.

Gene Curley '51, Peter Byrne '61, and John Manchester '64 skated away with the Old Timers' Award for the oldest grads skating this year, while the Junior Alum honors went to Lynn Beedle '03, Pete Catalano '03 and Toza Crnilovic '03. Making his inaugural appearance in the goal as an alumnus was Ziga Ivanic '02. The opposing goalie was Bob Demasi '82. The remaining roster included: Keith Barrett '80, Matt Barrett '06, Bob Bartolomeo '68 and son Joe, Mark Bolding '95, Peter Cahill (brother of the late Bill Cahill '73), Paul Cokinos '80, Robert Cole '79, Paul Clayton '99, Shane Combres '01, Greg Ducluzeau '01, Michael Driscoll '82, Michael Dyment '97, Mike Gonneville '77, Robert Harty '78, Ken Howard '65, Arthur Kramer '66, Joe LaBella '77, Jason Lumsdon '00, Jack Martin '87, Keith Maurice '02, Paul Noonan '86, Steve Patsos '79, Roger Perry '71, Don Ryley '77, Dan Stone '00, and Tom Viall (representing his brother Charles '64). Present, but not laced up, were James Grip '71, Tony Mariano '75 and Jim "Trip" Sutherland.

Following the game, Kreitzberg Arena's Marketing Manager Dave Maxwell presented the players with miniature Norwich Hockey goalie sticks and Division III National Championship hats and pucks as souvenirs, courtesy of the Blue Line Club. In addition, as honored VIPs for the weekend, all hockey alumni were given complimentary tickets to both Friday's and Saturday's varsity men's hockey games.

Cahill familyFollowing the alumni game, alumni, hockey players, fans and friends of Bill Cahill gathered in Milano Ballroom for lunch and remarks from Mike McShane, who thanked the alumni for their spirit and contributions to Norwich and the hockey program. McShane noted that the new arena and all the excitement it generates could not have been possible without the generosity of Norwich alumni, parents and friends. Peter Cahill also addressed the audience, thanking everyone for the wonderful tribute to his brother's memory.

Later that afternoon, between the first and second periods of the Norwich-Amherst hockey game, Norwich hockey alumni were called out to center ice to be introduced to the fans in Kreitzberg Arena. In a final tribute to a true coach, mentor and friend, Norwich Athletic Director Tony Mariano presented Peter Cahill with a beautifully framed hockey jersey, bearing the numeral four that Bill wore as a Norwich student-athlete.

All alumni hockey players should mark their calendars for December 2004, when the next William D. Cahill '73 Memorial Alumni Hockey Game Trophy match will occur in Kreitzberg Arena.

pubrel@norwich.edu, December 2003

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