Laurier Brantford's first graduating class marked its 10th anniversary in conjunction with the school's annual homecoming events.
Members of Laurier Brantford's first graduating class attended events this weekend, according to the school's associate director of development and alumni relations.
"It's hard to believe it's been 10 years and we had a handful of students from that first class here," Ann Brandt said. "This was also the fifth anniversary for the class of 2008 and, of course, we always welcome all our alumni."
Hundreds of current and former students wearing Laurier's purple and gold packed the Brantford and District Civic Centre to watch the men's hockey team open its season.
"This is considered a home game for the team," Brandt said. "We are encouraging our athletics from Waterloo to come down more often. They love coming here to play."
That sentiment was confirmed by Laurier Golden Hawks team captain Tyler Stothers.
"Actually, this game is always our best crowd of the whole season," Stothers said. "We don't get as big a turnout at our larger rink in Waterloo, so this game is great. The guys really thrive off the loud noise and the crowd."
The Golden Hawks certainly came out strong against the Windsor Lancers, with defenceman Peter MacIntosh getting the first goal of the game just four minutes in.
The crowd erupted again when Ryan Lopes tied the score 2-2 at the end of the second period.
But the Lancers would add to goals in the third period for a 4-2 victory.
"We have a young team," Stothers said. "But we had our best recruiting class that I've seen and I think we are going to make some noise in the (OUA) West Division."
Two of the team's local players didn't get to have a homecoming of their own on Saturday, as goaltender Duncan Long and forward Joe Vanni were injured.
Long is a St. John's College graduate, while Vanni played for the Brantford Golden Eagles when the junior B club was still in town.
"Unfortunately they both have some injuries," Stothers said. "It's just fluke stuff, too. Duncan has a back spasm and Joe broke his foot blocking a shot in practice. But they are here to cheer the team on."
Brandt said the school's graduating classes are growing in scope every year and that homecoming planning will have to also evolve.
"We are at just under 3,100 alumni from Laurier Brantford now and each subsequent class is larger than the last," she said. "Luckily the YMCA and Laurier Athletics and Recreation Centre will provide us with our own varsity team in 2016 when we get basketball."