Tonight we have a special program before the game starts. We’ll have the opportunity to meet and honor one of Middlebury’s greatest teams—the 1960–61 men’s hockey team. 20 members of the team have returned to the College during this year’s Alumni Hockey Weekend to celebrate the 50th anniversary of that extraordinary season.
This truly was the team that set the standard for our hockey program. Competing against much larger schools during an era when there was only one division in collegiate hockey, the ’61 Panthers finished the season with 19 wins and only 2 losses, scoring a total of 192 goals—a season scoring record that still stands today. The team averaged more than nine goals per game, while the netminders allowed fewer than three goals per contest. It also boasted the only all-brother line in college hockey.
The men who played on the ’61 team have made Middlebury proud both on and off the ice. After graduating, they went on to become successful businessmen, entrepreneurs, and professionals in the fields of architecture, law, higher education, golf, and film. Collectively, they have served their country in the military, served their communities and professions in a wide range of volunteer positions, raised families, and seen their own children through college. Some are now not only Middlebury alumni, but parents of alumni.
Now I’d like to ask the members of the ’61 team to come out on the ice and be recognized.
Peter Connal '61
||#2 Frank Costanzo '61
#1 Chuck Gately '62
#14 Frank Coy '61
|Right Wing||#17 Jerry Fryberger '61
#14 Richard Coy '64
#18 Robert Fryberger '61
#22 Donald Swain '62
#18 John Flynn '63
We’d also like to recognize two players from the 1958 and 1959 teams who are present here tonight. These men helped to build the team and contributed to its successes.
||#5 Pete Bostwick '58|
|#12 Mike Karin '59|
And finally, we would like to call the captain of the 1961 hockey team to the ice:
||#16 Phil Latreille|
Gentlemen, we salute you, the men who set the standard for Middlebury hockey’s winning tradition.
We also have a special tribute tonight to captain Jean Philippe “Phil” Latreille ’61.
Phil is considered one of the greatest college hockey players of all time. A Montreal native, he was recruited by just about every top college in the U.S. and Canada and by two teams in the National Hockey League. Phil chose Middlebury because of coach Duke Nelson, and he went on to etch his name in Panther and national record books. A three time All-American right wing, he was known for a blistering slapshot that was years ahead of its time.
Phil scored more goals in a game (10), in a season (80), and in a career (250) than any other player in the history of U.S. college hockey. Fifty years later, he still holds seven all-division NCAA scoring records.
Phil, we salute you. As a permanent commemoration of your achievements, the Friends of Panther Hockey have installed a plaque in your honor located, appropriately enough, just under the Canadian flag and next to the All-American awards. Scott Needham, president of Friends of Panther Hockey, also has a replica of the plaque for you to take home.
Now I’d like to ask the audience to join me in saying thank you to you and your teammates from all of us at Middlebury.