Fredonia and Buffalo State, who already have a rich history of athletics as long-time travel partners and rivals, will enhance that rivalry beginning this season with the development of the "Battle by the Lake," a season-long all sports competition between the two institutions for The Lake Erie Cup.
The two Western New York institutions, both members of the State University of New York Athletic Conference, consistently compete for recruits from Section 6 high schools, producing a natural rivalry which 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 situated just over 50 miles from one another.
"Fredonia's rivalry with Buffalo State has been a great one," Fredonia Director of Athletics Greg Prechtl said. "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."
"Our geographic locations have created a natural rivalry that has formed over years of intense competition," said Buffalo State Director of Athletics Jerry Boyes. "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."
The structure for the "Battle by the Lake" will be as follows:
Each sport in which the two schools compete is worth two points annually. In sports which 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 one-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 will earn the Lake Erie Cup and keep the cup on its campus for the following year. Non-conference and postseason matchups will not count toward the Lake Erie Cup competition.
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.