SUNY Buffalo State and Fredonia, two institutions that share a rich history as athletics travel partners and rivals, will compete in the "Battle by the Lake," a season-long, all-sports competition for the Lake Erie Cup.
The two Western New York institutions, both members of the State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC), consistently compete for recruits from the Section VI high schools, producing a natural rivalry that begins long before the first athletic competition each season. As a result, former high school teammates and rivals find themselves on opposing rosters between the two colleges located just over 50 miles apart.
"Our geographic locations have created a natural rivalry that has formed over years of intense competition," said Jerry Boyes, director of athletics at Buffalo State. "We are excited to elevate the rich rival tradition between Buffalo State and Fredonia with the development of the Lake Erie Cup. We think this is a great way to increase the support our students provide to one another as they work toward an overall common goal, striving to win the 'Battle by the Lake' on an annual basis."
"Fredonia's rivalry with Buffalo State has been a great one," said Greg Prechtl, director of athletics at Freodonia. "For decades—even prior to the formation of the SUNYAC—Buffalo State vs. Fredonia State contests were hotly contested affairs that generated great interest on both campuses. Competition for the Lake Erie Cup should further highlight this great rivalry and provide even more incentive to athletes from both programs to elevate their games."
Structure for the "Battle by the Lake"
Each sport in which the two schools compete is worth two points annually. In sports that meet once per regular season, each game is worth two points and ties are worth one point. In sports that play twice during the regular season (softball, men's hockey, and men's and women's basketball), each game will be worth one point, and ties will be worth a half point. In the sports of cross country, swimming and diving, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field, the team that finishes higher at the SUNYAC Championship meet will earn two points for its school.
The school with the most points at the end of the season (non-conference and postseason matchups will not count) will win the Lake Erie Cup to keep on its campus until the following year. Buffalo State's football and women's hockey teams will not participate as Fredonia does not offer teams in those sports. Conversely, Fredonia's women's tennis and baseball teams will not take part as Buffalo State does not sponsor those sports.