Rivera Ends College Career

16-Rivera, Jacob-Potsdam HockeyJacob Rivera, a forward on the Potsdam College/University ice hockey team in New York, ended his college career with nine goals and eight assists in 68 career games.

The 6-1, 195-pound senior from Pacific Palisades helped the Bears finish 11-11-4 this season.

“Jake is a terrific kid,” said Coach Chris Bernard. “His senior season was an exceptional end to a very productive career. He sincerely dedicated himself to bettering our program and our campus through hard work and involvement. He has been a great teammate and fun player to coach.”

Rivera started skating in 1996, at age five, after going with his father to a Kings game at the Great Western Forum. They had been invited by NHL star Kirk Muller, who played on the 1984 Canadian Olympic team and then 19 seasons as a pro. After passing through the visiting team’s locker room after the game, Jake told his father: “This is what I want to do.”

Jake kept pestering his father for two weeks until Rick found the Iceoplex in Simi Valley (where the Kings then practiced) and signed Jake up for a youth program. On days when Jake wasn’t practicing, he begged his parents to take him to the rink for open ice “stick time.”

In an earlier interview with the News, Rivera said that after college he’d like to try out for a pro team. If that option doesn’t present itself on the rink, he’ll pursue a career in business administration.

Rivera was honored by President Dr. Kristin G. Esterberg for earning top marks at Potsdam, which is located on the outskirts of Adirondack Park. He was also named to the SUNY Potsdam dean’s fall list.

Rivera has two younger brothers who also play hockey. Luke skates for the Freedonia Blue Devils and Nick, a left-winger, was the captain for the Omaha Lancers this past season.
Jacob Rivera played for the Potsdam Bears. Photo: Jason Hunter


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