DU hockey celebrates national championship with fans: “The entire state of Colorado is so proud” – The Denver Post

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock welcomed the DU hockey program back home with a special offer for the national champions.

A (joking) get-out-of-jail-free card.

“The mayor says you can go out and break any law you want,” Hancock said in a Tuesday night address to the team inside Magness Arena when state leaders joined hundreds of fans to celebrate DU’s 5-1 victory over Minnesota State in the title game.

Colorado Gov. Jared Polis grabbed the microphone to make a state proclamation: April 12, 2022, will forever be known as Denver Pioneers Ice Hockey Championship Day. DU is now tied with Michigan for the most championships in NCAA hockey history (nine).

“The entire state of Colorado is so proud,” Polis said. “We kept battling. The entire season was a team effort. The only thing that will look better than a golden nine behind us will be a golden 10 next year.”

U.S. Rep. Diana DeGette, D-Denver, also delivered a message at the ceremony. She plans to enter remarks in the congressional record this week with a statement to recognize DU’s championship season. However, DeGette is a graduate of Colorado College — the Pioneers’ bitter hockey rival.

“Even though I’m a CC Tiger, I am here tonight to honor our Pioneers,” DeGette said. “Our wonderful players and coaches. I’ll probably get thrown out of the alumni association, but that’s OK with me.”

Among fans seated on the north side of Magness Arena were Susan and Steven Pozder of Highlands Ranch. They earned bachelor’s and graduate degrees at DU and have been season-ticket holders for 30 years. Both attended the Frozen Four in Boston.

“The whole last period of the championship game, everyone in our whole section was standing,” Susan Pozder said. “It’s great for Denver and Colorado.”

Steven Pozder added: “It was amazing seeing them play the way they did.”

The evening finished with coach David Carle and captain Cole Guttman speaking to the lively crowd.

“A very important group is our alumni family,” Carle said. “They give a lot of time, effort, energy and money to make this thing go. They come around our players a lot and learn what it means to be a Pioneer. We couldn’t do it without them. This truly is a family.”

Guttman, a sixth-round NHL draft pick to the Lightning, said: “We couldn’t have done this without everyone’s support and we can’t stress (enough) how much we appreciate it. The support from you guys on campus, in Loveland, and in Boston, is a huge reason why we’re standing here today as champions.”

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