Centennial Sports: History of Hockey in Pelham


Gavin Kleinberger, Sports Editor, Junior

Boys Ice Hockey has been a cornerstone of Pelham High School athletics for decades, with years of success. The first-ever team was created in 1943, getting almost thirty players to sign up for the team. It was the first time in PMHS history that they had assembled an Ice Hockey team. At this time, field hockey was referred to as hockey. The team was coached by Herb Wiink and Don Sasser. There were high levels of enthusiasm for the sport, but the team faced a problem: they had no ice to play on. This was before the rise of artificial ice, and there was no frozen pond for them to play on, given the weather conditions of Pelham. The team had to shut down because of these problems, not starting up again until 1970.

Following the long hiatus, Pelham had a Boys Ice Hockey team consistently in the years after that, up until the present day. The team was sometimes recreational, depending on how many people were on the team. Currently, there is a girls varsity hockey team for Pelham High School. The first girls hockey team was started in 1973, where they were able to get 19 members to play. There was also a girls team in 1988. For years, the coach of the boys hockey was Cal Schmeichel, before Ed Witz, the current coach, took over. The team has won an abundance of section titles since the turn of the century. This was all capped off in 2017, when Pelham won a state championship for the first time ever, with a nearly undefeated record of 25-1.