Syracuse to Honor Alumni This Weekend

Updated: Nov 4, 2021

By Zoe Jurmann


The Syracuse Orange are proud to celebrate the individuals who came before them and made the Syracuse Men’s Hockey Program what it is today. The 2021-22 Men’s Hockey Team is proud to welcome back alumni on Saturday and Sunday for their 2 game series against the University of Rhode Island. Syracuse is also set to honor the 2021 Hall of Fame inductees and award recipients throughout the weekend.


For the full Hall of Fame Alumni weekend schedule visit this page.

To register for Saturday's event and the 2021 Men's hockey Alumni Game use this link.


8 individuals will be inducted into the Syracuse Men's Hockey Hall of Fame, 1 championship team will be honored, and 2 more individuals will be recognized with the Van Winkle Award on Saturday evening. Meet the prestigious Syracuse Hockey alumni below.



Brian Fitzgerald

1958-1962

Forward

Captain 61-62

Original Team member HOF

Brian Fitzgerald is one of the true originals of the Syracuse University Hockey Association as it was called then. And when asked who the characters of the team were, he responded, “Well of course Van Winkle and then some people may have described me that way.”

Raised in Syracuse, Fitzgerald grew up playing hockey under the tutelage of his father, a former player. Brian was the older and first of two brothers to play at Syracuse, though at different times, and whose father was one of the original coaches.

As described by a teammate “As a player, he was a fast skater, played the first line, and he scored the winning overtime goal in the first home game of the season.” Brian was proficient and effective enough to be recruited along with two of his fellow teammates to play occasionally for the Semi-pro Syracuse Stars. After graduation, while in law school he continued to play hockey from time to time in New Jersey alongside his friend and former SU teammate “Rip” Van Winkle.

As a leader with the team, an officer (59-62) and Captain, as well as the Speaker Pro-Tem of the SU Joint Student Legislature (JSL) Fitzgerald was a strong advocate for the team putting forward resolutions for team funding, and recognition as well as study for financing an on-campus rink. During his junior and senior years, Fitzgerald joined the Marine Corps.

After graduating from SU Fitzgerald attended Fordham Law School. He later worked as a clerk for a judge in New York before he was called to service by the Marines for three years. After his service he married and moved to Colorado where he has stayed, practicing law and trading his hockey skates for a pair of rugby cleats.

As a member of one of the Original Teams, Brian Fitzgerald is already a part of the SUMH Hall of Fame. Today for all his contributions on and off the ice as an impact player and leader it is with great honor and pride that we induct Brian Fitzgerald into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame, Class of 2021.





Dave Kahn

1959-1963

Forward

According to Dave Kahn “You don’t stop playing hockey because you get old, you get old because you stop playing hockey.”

Kahn grew up in Princeton, NJ where at the age of six or seven he began skating and playing hockey at Princeton's Hobie Baker rink, as well as on the outdoor pond rinks. He continued playing throughout high school and at Syracuse University and still plays today, now in his 80’s.

At Syracuse University Kahn helped his childhood friend Dick Van Winkle establish the Syracuse University Hockey Association (SUHA). During his time with the Orange, Kahn played as a forward and was always described as “fast.” Described as “fast” Kahn played forward for the Orange from 1959-1963. Though stats from that time are scarce, if judged by his current performance he stacked up the points through assists. Kahn remembers helping construct the seasonal ice rink at the old Coliseum at the Syracuse State Fairgrounds where they shared the home ice with the local semi-pro team of the time.

He continues to play hockey at his local rink in Santa Barbara, CA, where he is known as the “elder statesman.” Kahn is a member of the Old Hacks, a senior house team, and also plays on the 80 & over USA team roster that has annual hockey tournaments with the 3 Canadian 80 & over teams.

For his contribution to the establishment of the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey program, his leadership on and off the ice, and his lifelong service as an ambassador to the game of hockey we are proud to induct Dave Kahn into the SUMH Hall of Fame.



Mike McTigue

1976-1979

Forward, #10

Co-Captain

Michael McTigue (pronounce Mick’ Tie) grew up in Rochester, NY where he attended McQuaid Jesuit High School, played hockey for four years and served as Captain his senior year. He then went to college at the Environmental Science and Forestry School, the affiliate school of SU, and played four years with The Orange

McTigue was a player who just loved playing and enjoyed the team and the camaraderie. Remembered by his teammates, McTigue was an impact player who was “a scrappy, little guy, quick and fast who scored goals and assists but is remembered most for his passing; a real playmaker.” McTigue was only 5’8, 150 lbs and believed his job was “to stay out of on-ice melees and use my speed to get away from those big guys.”

Despite a lack of statistics, it is agreed McTigue’s best year was his second year (76-77) when he led the team in scoring (total points) and was named a first-team league all-star. The 1976-1977 and 1977-1978 teams were comprised of some of SU Men’s Hockey's most talented players of that decade including McTigue, who was part of a prolific scoring machine that accumulated 144 total points among the teams top four players.

McTigue went on to gain his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine and returned to Massachusetts where he is an owner and partner in the Gardner Animal Hospital. He continues playing hockey in the local area men’s leagues, still enjoying “the camaraderie, the relations built and just having fun!”

It is with great honor and pride that we recognize Michael McTigue for his impact on and off the ice, for his leadership, and as a promoter of the game by inducting him into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame, as part of the Class of 2021.


Jim “Marblehead” Veale

1979-1983

Forward-Right Wing, #19

President (1980-1983) & Captain (1981-1983) & Player-coach (1982-1983)

While Jim’s nickname “Marblehead” may originally have indicated where he was from, it all also seemed to apply to the style of hockey he played. A former teammate described Veale as “a tough scrappy ROTC.”

As a player, you would find him in the middle of the action, a scorer. He was also considered an impact player which often involved hard checking and the occasional on-ice melee. Veale admits “Yeah, I did like throwing the body around, that was fun…I remember the fights more than the goals to be honest.” One memorable on-ice rumble earned him and his opponent an early exit from the game, later in the third period when the on-ice players looked up they could see the two combatants side by side watching the game and enjoying a couple of beers. “That is the great thing about hockey,” says Veale

As player-coach and captain, Veale was at every practice and was often playing ‘den-mother’ rounding up enough players for a game. As team president, he wrote checks to the refs to cover the previous year’s obligations before they would agree to work that year’s games.

After Syracuse, Veale returned to Boston then attended the University of Virginia for graduate school, eventually earning a Ph.D. in Physics. He went on to start up his own business, Lighthouse Instruments. His research and business interests are in developing laser spectroscopic methods for unmet needs in the pharmaceutical industry. Veale still enjoys playing hockey and is currently playing with a local Charlottesville team as well as traveling to some adult tournaments.

There is much more that could be said of Jim Veale but the lack of time, space, and the censors won’t allow it. It is with great honor and pride that we thank him for his impact on and off the ice, for his leadership, and as a promoter of the game by inducting him into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame, as part of the Class of 2021.

Erick Krug

1989-1993

Goalie #31


“Heck of a goalie and a wonderful guy. “

Erick Krug came to Syracuse from Catholic Memorial in Roxbury, Massachusetts, one of the premier high school ice hockey programs in the country. At Syracuse Krug served as the team’s main goalie and was part of the league champion team of 1989-1990.

As described by his teammates, "Krug was the backbone… we won the championship because he was a strong, strong goalie.” "He was our workhorse, he was in the goal most of the time, solid as a rock.” “He was ‘The Man’ and the best goalie in the league”

Krug loved SU Hockey and dedicated an enormous amount of time to the team as a leader on the ice. After graduating, he helped with fundraising and continued to be a support for the younger players. He played a vital role off the ice, acting as a big brother by taking new players under his wing, be they an upcoming goalie or a new rookie forward on his first road trip. He made them immediately feel part of the team and a valued member.

After graduating from SU, Krug returned to Massachusetts where he was a member of IBEW Local 103 and an active community member of the Knights of Columbus. He continued to play in local men’s hockey leagues and rooted for his hometown Bruins. Erick, unfortunately, passed away in February 2017, however, he will continue to be recognized for his stellar play and contribution to the team on and off the ice. We are honored to have his fellow teammates and family here for this occasion.


Lance Davis

1990-1994

Forward, #10

President and Captain

Lance Davis grew up in Amherst, Massachusetts where he played hockey through high school then headed for Syracuse University for a degree in journalism from the Newhouse School with little thought about hockey.

Once at Syracuse, Davis’ interest in hockey led him to become one of only 2 players from 90-94 to make the team as a freshman and play all 4 years. Davis was popular with the coaches and his teammates for his ability to win face-offs, dig the puck out of corners and make critical setup passes while playing in the stacked position as the third defenseman providing hard backchecking and defense play; he still managed to be among the top scorers and point leaders all four seasons. During the 93-94 season, he led the team in goals (13) and second in assists (10) and total points (23).

In addition to his on-ice performance, Davis served as a team officer for three years (1991-1994) and served as team Captain and club President (1992-1992). Teammates described him as “the leader on the team, not just the leader on the ice, he was the guy who organized it all, he always came in, was always ready, he led by example.”

Davis returned to the Boston area after graduating where he studied law at Boston College, becoming a lawyer and local politician. His communication skills were well utilized as a contract negotiation lawyer and local Alderman for Ward 6 in Dedham, MA. Davis has been an active community volunteer, school committee parent member, and, of course, a men’s league hockey player. He is currently stepping in to coach his community’s U18 Girls hockey program after it was nearly canceled. At 48 years old playing with 35-year-olds, he admits he isn’t the fastest guy on the team but can still play defense “covering that extra guy slot gets you a long hockey life.”

It is with great honor and pride that we thank Lance Davis for his impact on and the ice, and his leadership by inducting him into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame, as part of the Class of 2021.


Wes Rene

2009-2012

Forward/Center, #11

Captain

Wes Rene was a highly talented player and a model team leader whose level of play and leadership led the SUMH program through a transformational period, elevating the program, preparing it for the next generation of leadership, and reflected in today’s program culture. Wes Rene and Russell Suskind handled a lot of the behind-the-scenes paperwork, scheduling, and getting our budget tripled, they were very impactful, they helped turn the team around financially.

On the ice, Rene was part of one of the most prolific scoring first lines along with Richard Suskind and Aaron Witzel. Rene is ranked 4th all-time in total points (145) among SU players; 4th all-time in Goals (55); and 3rd all-time Assists (79) and was named to the 2010-2011 NECHL First Team All-Conference.

Upon graduation, Rene worked for two years at a beverage import company owned by his father, then attended Albany Law School. He now works with Harris Beach, a corporate law firm out of Rochester, NY. Since the pandemic, he and his fiancée have been residing in Saratoga Springs, NY.

For his level of impact play, and leadership it is with great honor and pride that we induct Wes Rene into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame, Class of 2021. Due to a prior commitment, Wes Rene is unable to attend the ceremony. Here to accept on behalf of Wes Rene is his father Paul, which seems appropriate due to the impact he had on Wes’s hockey career.


Nino DiPasquale

2012-2016

Defense, #23 and #10

Assistant Captain (2013-2015) and Captain 2015-2016

Nino DiPasquale had an impact both on and off the ice. “Everyone was excited to have him on the team. Nino was one of those players who helped elevate our game over the next couple of years”

One of the top players on the ice DiPasquale holds the distinction of being the all-time leading scorer among SUMH defensemen with a total of 117 points. He is also ranked 7th all-time among all SUMH players; 7th in all-time goals with 49; and 6th all-time in assists with 68. DiPasquale played in 121 games - 4th all-time and 2nd among defensemen.

Off the ice, DiPasquale was just as impactful. Tapped to be an assistant captain as a sophomore (2013-2014) he played a significant role in the recruitment of coach Nick Pierandri, his old high school coach; the teams SU faculty advisor John Petosa, his stepfather; and the Team Parent Communication representative, Sharon DiPasquale his mother. Working alongside Russell Suskind and the other captains, as well as those just mentioned, DiPasquale helped restructure how the team was administered, served as the liaison between players and the coach, and led by example on the ice, thereby taking the program to a different level. Nino took over as Senior Captain for the 2015-2016 season.

After graduating from SU, DiPasquale has stayed in regular contact with his teammates and SU Men’s Hockey as a fan, supporter, and resource to the SUMH program history project.

Because of the tremendous impact as a player and a leader it is with great honor and pride that we induct Nino DiPasquale into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame, Class of 2021.

Championship Team

HOF Teams 1989-1990

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The teams of the ’80s drew a lot of interest with 100+ potential players showing up for tryouts. While mostly self-coached during this decade, they managed to annually put together winning seasons on a consistent basis. Under the coaching leadership of Mike Yood, a SU Law student serving as a non-player coach during the 1986-1987 season, the team set up some basic systems based on the Russian style of play, which was untraditional for that time. These basic strategies were carried forward by the player-coaches that followed, resulting in SU teams playing in 3 out of 4 play-off finals between 1986-1990, culminating with a sweep of the 1989-1990 ECHL Regular Season and League Playoff Championships.

The 1989-1990 Championship team, led by player-coaches Mike Pace and Greg Craybas, has three Hall of Famers, to date, including forward, Chris Healy and goaltender, Erick Krug.


The team was comprised of Andrew Beach, Bill Brandenstein, Jack Bortz, Joe Boyer, Greg Craybas, Josh Curran, Greg Dudley, Bill Hackett, Mike Horn, Erick Krug, Ken Fry, Todd Fraser, Gary Funk, Chris Healy, Erik Long, Adam Lurie, Mike McKee, Rod Morrison, Chris Otremba, Mick Pace, Scott Polsworth, Kyle Rosenbaum, Rob Stolz, Jeff Traiger, Matt Weinberg, Mike Wechsler, Tom Werme, Scott Silberman, Merrill Zavod, Mark Dunn, and Bryan Freeman. All were highly skilled players, though each had their own skill sets, they were able to combine their skills into a formidable opponent of the New York club and D3 teams alike.

The top two lines of Ken Fry, Mike Pace, Gregg Craybus, Chris Healy, Todd Fraser, and Scotty Polworth were usually called upon to stop an opponent from scoring or if down a goal to go out there and score a goal. The third and fourth lines were: Josh Curran, Adam Lurie, Rob Stolz, Rod Morrison, Scott Silberman, and Gary Funk. The four lines complemented each other with the scoring evenly spread among them. The solid defense of Mike Horn, Eric Long, Tom Werme, and Jack Bortz was equally formidable along with unquestionably “the best goalie in the league”, Erick Krug, backed up by his successor Merrill Zavod along with Greg Dudley, Kyle Rosenbaum, and Chris Otremba.

It is with great pride that we recognize the 1989-1990 SUMH team for its dedication, effort, and self-directed leadership that has helped set the tone and creates the legacy upon which the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey program has grown into today by inducting the team into the Syracuse University Men’s Hockey Hall of Fame as part of Class of 2021. Accepting on behalf of those first classes are Mike Pace, Greg Craybas, and Chris Healy.

Van Winkle Award 2021

Lance Davis and Amy Morris Davis

The Richard Van Winkle award is presented to the Syracuse University Men’s Ice Hockey individual(s) who have demonstrated leadership on and off the ice, and have made significant contributions to the development of the team and the maintenance of its legacy. This year for the first time the Award recognizes the collaborative and synchronized effort of two such individuals.

Together these two individuals had a profound and lasting impact on the SUMH program, guiding it through a time of crisis, as well as a period of restructuring and growth and the professionalization of a hockey program that earned the respect of its peers in its league and across the state, securely setting the foundational anchors for the program that would eventually grow into today’s success. This year's recipients Lance Davis and Amy Morris Davis have done all that.

Lance Davis was a member of the SUMH from 1990-1994. He became a club officer in his sophomore season (1991-1992) when he found himself drafted/appointed by the team captains to represent them at the league’s team meeting, Davis went on to be elected Team Captain and Club President for the next two years 1992-1994.

Coach Allen LaVenture said of Lance “He was definitely a presence, he was the leader on the team, Lance was the glue that bound the team together, without Lance’s leadership I don’t think we would have had the team unity or the success we achieved.”

During this time Davis worked with team officers and coaches to transition from the informal “Player-Coach Era” into a more disciplined professionalized head coach system, including standards of play and behavior, protocols for addressing issues and carrying out day to day administration, a plan for promoting the team’s visibility and to increase attendance. Lance can also be credited with preventing the team’s ejection from the league and possible disbanding.

Lance is always the first to tell you he didn’t do it alone. He knew he needed help and recruited fellow teammates and friends including a new student from Hamilton, NY Upon hearing of her experience as team manager and chief statistician for the Hamilton high school team, Lance focused on the fact that the hockey club could really use her help to organize and pull the whole program together.

Amy Morris joined the Syracuse hockey club as manager during her freshman year ( 1991) spending the next four years (1991-1995) working hand in hand with the coaches and the team officers to reorganize the day-to-day administrative functions, and create a system for game day logistics and operations, publicity, ticket sales, handling the rosters, lots of rosters and any other tasks when necessary


“She was and is an organizer extraordinaire,” says Lance, “I knew well enough to get out of her way and let her put all the structures in place from an administrative standpoint, we talked about the bigger vision on how we needed the hockey vision to align with the administrative framework and it was a pretty good team in that regard at the end of the day.”

Lance and Amy have called Somerville their home since 2001. It is rare to see the name of one of them without seeing the other mentioned as well. Over the past 25 years, they have worked together to change and improve whatever community (residential or professional) they belong to. While Lance serves as a lawyer concerned with contract negotiations and as a local Alderman, Amy serves as a principal at the Learning Prep School in Newton, MA, a school that services students with language-based learning disabilities. Both have served on their children’s school committees and coached their youth sports teams. They serve together on the Honorary Committee for the Somerville Homeless Coalition Gala, helping to provide shelter, support, and hope to families and individuals who are homeless, or at risk of becoming homeless. Lance and Amy have also been extremely helpful with the Team history Project, providing background perspective of the time, filling in player roster names and information, tracking down people, and making introductions.

For all their contributions it is with great pride and honor that Syracuse University Men’s Hockey presents Lance Davis and Amy Morris Davis with the 2021 Richard Van Winkle Award.


Join the Orange to celebrate these iconic figures at Tennity Ice Pavilion on Saturday, November 6th, at 3:30 pm!



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