I spent the past weekend in Detroit to watch RIT’s first game at the Frozen Four. It was a bit disappointing to see them lose 8-1 against the Wisconsin Badgers, but it was a great experience. Throughout the weekend, I heard many people stating that RIT showed that they don’t belong in the Frozen Four, but I completely disagree. RIT beat the Denver, second ranked team in the nation, and the University of New Hampshire to make its way to the Frozen Four.
The semifinal game was lost early on with too many penalties including a 5 minute major where Wisconsin scored two of their goals (with 5 on 3 action). RIT is predominantly a defensive team and with such a team, it is hard mentally to swallow being down more than a couple of goals. I liked that Coach Wilson was generous enough to put in both backup goalies so they can also get playing time in what was the biggest game of RIT hockey history.
The weekend was full of one-sided victories. All three games were decided by at least 5 goals, which didn’t make much for very exciting and nail-biting hockey.
I was actually surprised by the lack of support other teams’ fans were giving to their team. It was shocking that the loudest fans during the Championship game were the RIT fans that were mocking the fans of both Boston College and Wisconsin. It got to the point that Wisconsin fans actually came over to the Corner Crew asking for their help in between the second and third intermission. It is sad that they needed to ask for help from a section of probably around 300-400 RIT fans to help cheer on the Wisconsin team that clearly had many more fans throughout the arena. The RIT fans left such a presence in the championship game that it was mentioned during the ESPN broadcast and several media articles covering the game. One of the biggest cheers that got the most laughter and applause from surrounding non-RIT fans was “That’s all right, that’s OK, you’re going to work for us one day!”. Even towards the end of the game, several Boston College fans starting chanting RIT along with the Corner Crew.
The City Of Detroit
Definitely signs of tough times in Detroit with almost every other store was out of business. While talking to some locals, they kidded around by saying “you should have seen 3 years ago, when everything was out of business.” Even though there was many people affected by the downturn of the economy, they didn’t act it. The streets were packed all day with Tigers fans (Detroit’s home opener was on Friday afternoon) and the city put together a festival across the street of Comerica Park with live music, vendors and games. The people of Detroit love their sports which was evident by the many stores and street stands that sold sporting apparel and merchandise (those were practically the only stores that remained open besides bars and restaurants).
By far my favorite place in Detroit was this little strip known as Greektown which is made up of a bunch of Greek restaurants (I ate on this street for 4 of my meals). The food there was fantastic and for a pretty decent price. Greektown seemed to be the place to be no matter what time of day, and I recommend it to anyone traveling to Detroit.