This weekend, the undefeated No. 1 RIT women’s hockey team will take on No. 4 SUNY Plattsburgh in one of the most anticipated match-ups of the season in Division III hockey. Both teams have been perennial national powers for the last five years, with Plattsburgh winning back-to-back National Championships in 2007 and 2008. The Tigers and Cardinals have met seven times in the last three seasons, with Plattsburgh holding a 5-2 edge. Both RIT wins were notable, however, with the first coming on Jan. 19, 2008, when the Tigers snapped Plattsburgh’s 24-game home unbeaten streak with a 5-2 win. Just over a year later, RIT captain and current assistant coach Keltie Jones scored the game-winning goal with 1:44 left in overtime to give RIT a dramatic 2-1 win in front of what is believed to be a women’s record crowd of 1,133 fans at Ritter Arena.
Fast forward to this weekend, where not only the Tigers are the top team in all of Division III, but will be playing for a great cause. The Tigers, along with Zeta Tau Alpha Sorority, will be teaming up with Geneva General Cardiology Associates to help “Black Out Heart Disease.”
The Tigers are auctioning off special edition, game worn black jerseys (similar to what the men wore during Brick City Homecoming and Family Weekend), and selling replica black T-shirts in order to raise money and awareness about heart disease. Friday’s game gets underway at 7:05 p.m., while Saturday’s contest begins at 3:05 p.m. Admission is free for both games. Bidding on the jerseys will close on Saturday at 6 p.m. The black T-shirts will be on sale for $10 at both games with 100 percent of the proceeds going towards “Black out Heart Disease.” T-shirts are also on sale from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday, and Friday in RIT’s Student Alumni Union.
Bidding is already fast and furious, with senior forward Katie Stack’s jersey already at $500. She is just a penny away from equaling the previous high for a Tiger hockey jersey, as former goaltender Jared DeMichiel’s sold for $500.01 last year in a similar auction to raise money for cancer research. It was nearly a year ago that the men’s and women’s teams, along with Zeta Tau Alpha, raised over $21,000 for the Lipson Cancer Center at Rochester General Hospital to fight cancer. In October, the Tigers raised $7,000 by auctioning off black jerseys online in supporting Rochester Americans Hall of Famer, the late Craig Charron in his battle with cancer.
USCHO.com has gotten into the act, combining RIT’s efforts, along with upcoming promotions by Plattsburgh and Amherst into a nice article.
The Tigers are off to their best start in program history with a 17-0 record, and are closing in on the single-season record for wins in a season (22).
Come on out and make history by filling Ritter Arena to capacity. It should be an unforgettable weekend of hockey, as the Tigers attempt to continue their historic run. Most importantly, this will be a great way to support a tremendous cause.
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