It was a magical, unforgettable ride.
The 1963-64 Marblehead High hockey team shocked the Massachusetts schoolboy puck world on its journey to the all-divisions state tournament championship game. The Headers combined a hard nosed style of play with a talented group of players who approached every shift like it was their last.
That entire 18-player team, along with collegiate All-American goaltenders Cory Schneider and Gary Whear, will be inducted into the Friends of Marblehead Hockey Hall of Fame Aug. 18 at 5:30 p.m., as part of the organization's 14th Annual Bud Orne Golf Tournament at Tedesco Country Club.
"It was an honor and a privilege to represent Marblehead High," said Daynor Prince, the Headers captain and MVP during the 1963-64 regular season. "We left it all on the ice every day. We were a team that played for each other, the school and the community. We were filled with pride — and we loved to compete."
"The 1963-64 team lit the flame for future Header hockey teams to follow," said Bob Roland, who was in his second of an eventual 29 seasons guiding MHS as head coach. "We had a system that every player bought in to: Play hard and get after it."
And get after it they did. Led by the first line of Prince, Don "Toot" Cahoon and John Sumner, the Headers scored and banged their way to an unprecedented ice campaign. Despite falling to the Arlington Spy Ponders in the title game at the Boston Garden, the 1963-64 season is still considered by many as the best in the program's storied history. The program averaged a yearly record of 15-3 from 1963-1973, which has been labeled "The Golden Era of Marblehead High School Hockey."
Roland was quoted in a 1985 column by then-Salem News sports editor Bill Kipouras as saying, "Our first (1964 Tournament) game was against Hudson at Worcester Arena. I can still remember Tootie, a freshman, getting on the bus without a tie, and Daynor, a senior, really got on Tootie's case. We won that game, 5-2, then got on a roll.