DU, CC hockey brought one wild party to Ball Arena


Kyle Gustafson grabbed a green lawn chair, pounded all four legs into the tallest snowbank within shouting distance, and plopped down like it was the Fourth of July.

“One of the highlights of the year,” Gustafson chuckled, adjusting his grey DU Pioneers stocking cap as darkness fell, right along with the temps, in a parking lot 150 yards north of Ball Arena.

“Every time we play Colorado College, we beat up on them, you know? It’s all good fun.”

The best fun, now that you mention it. In its Ball Arena debut, the Gold Pan Series looked and sounded like the Avs never left.

“Country roaaaaaad, take me home …” a capacity crowd — 17,952 strong, rocking to the rafters — sang in unison with 7:10 left in the tilt and the Pios leading, 2-0, en route to an eighth consecutive win in the rivalry.

DU students locked arms and swayed. For a few hours on a frigid Friday night, Chopper Circle was Magness North.

“Give me a C!”


“Give me an O!”


“Give me an N!”

“Give me a D!”


“Give me an O!”


“Give me an M!”

Stop! Stop! Stop!

Family newspaper, people.

“Hockey was kind of that thing we would rally around in college,” Paul Sherman, DU Class of ’17, had explained earlier in the night, pointing a yellow temperature gauge that looked like a Star Wars prop at a portable brick pizza oven. “And this is my first game since college.”

So to celebrate, Sherman and a half-dozen of his closest pals — including one yet to arrive who’d attended Colorado College — set up a tailgate outside Ball Arena in a 36-degree chill. The menu: Pizza and whiskey.


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