This month in history: DU celebrates third hockey national championship

50 Years ago…

DU wins its third NCAA hockey championship

2011 marks the 50th anniversary of DU’s third NCAA national championship in hockey. The Pioneers also had won the NCAA championship the season before. The team also won the 1961 WCHA regular-season and tournament titles.


In the 1961 NCAA Tournament, the Pioneers beat the Minnesota Golden Gophers 6-1 in the semifinals and defeated St. Lawrence in the finals by a score of 12-2.


DU’s Marty Howe, Bill Masterson, Jerry Walker, Grant Munro and George Kirkwood were named All-Americans in 1961.


The team was captained by Masterson, who went on to play for the NHL’s Minnesota North Stars. In 1968, Masterson died as result of an on-ice injury he sustained during a game against the Oakland Seals. As a result, the NHL’s Bill Masterson Memorial Trophy is annually awarded to a player who shows perseverance and dedication to the sport of hockey.


DU hockey coach Murray Armstrong received the Spencer Penrose Award and WCHA Coach of the Year award in recognition of the team’s accomplishments.


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