By: Ethan Smith, News Editor
The EnMarket Savannah Hockey Classic brought huge crowds with a promise of some fun southern hockey, and the teams in attendance did not disappoint.
For the 20th year in the row, four club teams from the University of Georgia, University of Florida, Florida State University and Georgia Tech came to Savannah to compete for the Thrasher Cup.
At this year’s event, Georgia Tech was successful in winning their eighth Thrasher Cup trophy, going 2-0 in the tournament with wins over Florida State and runner-up Georgia.
Both Georgia and Georgia Tech were successful in their victories last Friday, as Georgia Tech up-ended Florida State 7-3 and Georgia defeated Florida 8-5.
Florida State and Florida would meet in the first game Saturday in a Sunshine State showdown. FSU jumped out to a 4-2 lead at the end of the first period of play and the Seminoles continuously answered every UF goal with one of their own.
The Seminoles would take third place in the tournament, defeating the Gators 6-4, finishing 1-1 in the tournament.
The action would shift to the Peach State showdown for the Thrasher Cup between Georgia Tech and UGA. Both teams were very physical from the get-go, which had the sellout crowd on their feet and into the action from puck drop. GT took the early lead, but the Bulldogs answered to tie the game at one a piece.
The Yellow Jackets would score two-unanswered goals to take a 3-1 lead and take complete control on most of the game, but the Bulldogs came within one in the final minutes. Georgia Tech was able to stave off the Bulldogs, winning their eighth Thrasher Cup and preventing a Georgia three-peat.
With hockey being a sport that isn’t usually accessible within the regional South, hockey fans from Savannah and even other areas within Georgia clamored for a chance to attend the cup.
The event brought huge crowds to the Savannah Civic Center, and the Savannah Sports Council was very pleased with the turn-out and excitement that came from the fans in attendance.
Here is a slideshow of this years event.
Savannah used to have its own hockey team, the Savannah Sharks, but that team has been disbanded for quite some time, and the enthusiasm for the sport has long since resided. The Savannah Hockey Classic has helped to rekindle a dormant passion for Hockey within the Savannah community.
The event, which has been hosted in Savannah since 1999, has always served as an event for fans from numerous colleges to come out and express their passion for their universities and for the sport of hockey.
The event will likely return to Savannah in 2020 for its 21st installment, so keep up with the club’s teams for the remainder of their seasons and come out next year if you are a sports fan.