Special moments and players in Mariucci's first 20 seasons

  • Article by: JASON GONZALEZ , Star Tribune
  • Updated: January 3, 2014 - 3:23 PM

Special moments and players in the short history of the arena with a big ice sheet.

 

Twenty years ago the “Taj Mahal” of college hockey opened on the University of Minnesota campus. The new Mariucci Arena was a palace fit for Gophers hockey.

The 200-feet by 100-feet Olympic-sized ice sheet at the center of the venue was pristine. The hockey that it would play host to over the next 20 years was even better.

It started with a 4-4 tie against St. Cloud State on Oct. 30, 1993, and the excitement hasn’t let up. In the last game there before this weekend’s Mariucci Classic, Seth Ambroz scored a goal with 26 seconds left to give the Gophers a sweep of Wisconsin in the first Big Ten hockey series ever.

The individual talent to skate in the arena has been special. At least half of the 2014 men’s Olympic roster has played at Mariucci, including three former Gophers.

“It’s almost crazy when you look at all the guys that came through here. There are 20 guys on the Olympic roster that played college hockey and about 16 probably played at Mariucci,” said Grant Potulny, former Gophers standout and current assistant coach. “Mariucci was the Taj Mahal when it was built.”

With every aging arena, upkeep is necessary. In 2001-2002, 18 luxury suites were added to allow an even 10,000 fans into each event. Last season, a new LED scoreboard and sound system were installed.

The thing fans continue to fill the seats for, though, is the outstanding hockey talent on the ice each night.

In honor of the venue’s 20th anniversary and this weekend’s Mariucci Classic, here’s a look at the top 10 moments and top 10 players to come through Mariucci Arena.

Note: The lists were determined by a survey of former Gophers coaches and players, media members and fans. The memories are in chronological order.

 

Upsetting No. 1

Though there were many, Mike Crowley’s most memorable goal arguably came on Feb. 9, 1996. His wrist shot past Colorado College’s goaltender gave the Gophers a 3-2 victory against the top-ranked Tigers in front a sellout crowd. It was the Gophers’ only victory against the Tigers that season. Current Gophers coach Don Lucia was on the opposing bench at the time.

 

A timely late hat trick

Ryan Kraft made sure the Gophers would hang another banner in Mariucci Arena with a third-period hat trick against Wisconsin in 1997. Kraft’s goals enabled the Gophers to pull away for a 7-3 victory and claim a share of the WCHA regular-season championship.

 

Over-the-head good

  • related content

  • Chart: New Mariucci Arena's Top 10 players

    Thursday January 2, 2014

    Ten notable players to lace up skates at Mariucci Arena

  • Preview: Mariucci Classic

    Thursday January 2, 2014

    23RD ANNUAL MARIUCCI CLASSIC PREVIEWFriday: Ferris State vs. Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), 4 p.m.Colgate vs. Gophers, 7 p.m., Fox Sports...

  • Mariucci Arena, in 2002.

  • Ticket from new Mariucci Arena's grand opening in 1993.

  • Gopher Mike Crowley’s goal beat No. 1 Colorado College in 1996.

  • Ryan Kraft’s hat trick for the Gophers in the third period of a 1997 game against Wisconsin clinched a share of the MacNaughton Cup.

  • Mariucci Arena fills up for most Gophers hockey games.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Boston - A. Ranaudo 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - C. Morton
Toronto - D. Hutchison 6:05 PM
Baltimore - U. Jimenez
Washington - T. Roark 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Harang
Miami - N. Eovaldi 6:10 PM
NY Mets - B. Colon
NY Yankees - M. Pineda 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - J. Odorizzi
Cincinnati - J. Cueto 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - J. Arrieta
Chicago WSox - C. Bassitt 7:10 PM
Kansas City - L. Hendriks
Cleveland - C. Kluber 7:10 PM
Houston - N. Tropeano
Detroit - R. Porcello 7:10 PM
Minnesota - R. Nolasco
Milwaukee - W. Peralta 7:15 PM
St. Louis - L. Lynn
Los Angeles - D. Haren 7:40 PM
Colorado - T. Matzek
San Francisco - J. Peavy 8:40 PM
Arizona - J. Collmenter
Seattle - R. Elias 9:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Rasmus
Texas - N. Tepesch 9:05 PM
Oakland - S. Kazmir
Philadelphia - A. Burnett 9:10 PM
San Diego - I. Kennedy
Tampa Bay 9/18/14 7:25 PM
Atlanta
San Diego 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Buffalo
Dallas 9/21/14 12:00 PM
St. Louis
Washington 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Philadelphia
Houston 9/21/14 12:00 PM
NY Giants
Minnesota 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New Orleans
Tennessee 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Baltimore 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Cleveland
Green Bay 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Detroit
Indianapolis 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Oakland 9/21/14 12:00 PM
New England
San Francisco 9/21/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Denver 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Seattle
Kansas City 9/21/14 3:25 PM
Miami
Pittsburgh 9/21/14 7:30 PM
Carolina
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
(5) Auburn 9/18/14 6:30 PM
(20) Kansas State
Connecticut 9/19/14 7:00 PM
So Florida
Old Dominion 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Rice
Troy 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(13) Georgia
Georgia Tech 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Virginia Tech
Eastern Mich 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(11) Michigan State
Iowa 9/20/14 11:00 AM
Pittsburgh
Bowling Green 9/20/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Maryland 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Syracuse
Tulane 9/20/14 11:30 AM
Duke
Hawaii 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Marshall 9/20/14 1:00 PM
Akron
North Carolina 9/20/14 2:30 PM
East Carolina
Army 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Virginia 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(21) BYU
(6) Texas A&M 9/20/14 2:30 PM
SMU
Rutgers 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Navy
Central Mich 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Kansas
Utah 9/20/14 2:30 PM
Michigan
Florida 9/20/14 2:30 PM
(3) Alabama
Louisville 9/20/14 2:30 PM
FIU
Fla Atlantic 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Wyoming
Indiana 9/20/14 3:00 PM
(18) Missouri
San Jose St 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Minnesota
Texas State 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Illinois
Massachusetts 9/20/14 3:00 PM
Penn State
Georgia State 9/20/14 5:00 PM
Washington
Appalachian St 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Miss State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
(8) LSU
Northern Ill 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas
Middle Tennessee 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Memphis
Utah State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Arkansas State
Miami-Ohio 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Idaho 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Ohio U
Ball State 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Toledo
(14) So Carolina 9/20/14 6:30 PM
Vanderbilt
(4) Oklahoma 9/20/14 6:30 PM
West Virginia
Ga Southern 9/20/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
UNLV 9/20/14 7:00 PM
Houston
(22) Clemson 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(1) Florida State
Miami-Florida 9/20/14 7:00 PM
(24) Nebraska
New Mexico 9/20/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico St
California 9/20/14 9:00 PM
Arizona
Louisiana 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Boise State
(2) Oregon 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Washington St
San Diego St 9/20/14 9:30 PM
Oregon State
Toronto 9/19/14 9:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Edmonton 9/20/14 6:00 PM
Hamilton
Calgary 9/21/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Ottawa 9/21/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 season     
Aug 28 - vs. E. Illinois 6 pmX42-20
Sep 6 - vs. M. Tennessee St. 2:30 pmX35-24
Sep 13 - at TCU 3 pmX30-7
Sep 20 - vs. San Jose St. 3 p.m.
Sep 27 - at Michigan TBA
Oct 11 - vs. Northwestern TBA
Oct 18 - vs. Purdue 11 am
Oct 25 - at Illinois 11 am
Nov 8 - vs. Iowa TBA
Nov 15 - vs. Ohio State TBA
Nov 22 - at Nebraska TBA
Nov 29 - at Wisconsin TBA

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How will the Vikings and Gophers do this weekend?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close