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Lausanne Hockey Club
Lausanne Hockey Club
League National League A
Founded 1922
Home Arena CIG de Malley
Capacity: 9244
City Flag of Switzerland Lausanne, Vaud
Colors Red and White
Minor League Affiliates Star Lausanne (1. Liga)
Promotion 1957, 1978, 1995, 2001, 2013

Lausanne HC is an ice hockey team, based in the city of Lausanne, Switzerland, which competes in the National League A - the top tier of Swiss hockey.

During the 2013-14 season, their first in the National League A, the team managed to average 6,528 spectators, ranking them fifth in the league in term of attendance.[1]

History[]

Founded in 1922, the Lausanne Hockey Club is one of the oldest clubs in Switzerland. They played for sixteen years at Chalet-à-Gobet, in the city heights. In 1938, LHC moved their headquarters to Montchoisi where, in 1941, they merged with Star HC to become the Montchoisi Hockey Club. On November 6, 1949, the team of Lausanne definitively chose their original name: Lausanne Hockey Club. It is with this name that they started off in the Swiss national league. Even though they never won a title, the Lausanne Hockey Club has nevertheless always been competitive. Frequently, they have finished in second place, earning the informal title of vice-champion.

Relegated to Nationalliga B in 1954, they powered back to the Nationalliga A on March 2, 1957 and remained there until 1961. For the next seventeen years, LHC remained at the Nationalliga B level where they had occasional success. On February 18, 1978, in front of over 7,000 fans, Lausanne Hockey Club finally obtained their promotion to Nationalliga A, defeating HC Davos 8 goals to 4. After three seasons spent in the highest league, LHC, reeling from the loss of a player in a tragic car accident, was relegated to NLB. They remained there from 1981 to 1984 before falling to the 1. Liga while also moving to the International Ice Center at Malley (CIGM) where they still play today. They then played one season in first League (84-85) and made a round trip to NLB (85-86), to be back once again in the first League. Three years of purgatory in the inferior league allowed the Lausanne Hockey Club to recover a sporting health status to reach the finals in 1989 and obtain their promotion to NLB.

In 1992, the club’s survival was threatened by bankruptcy. The situation generated a fantastic surge of solidarity followed by the operation “Save LHC”. At the same time, the team saved itself from relegation to the 1. Liga (season 1992-1993). The season 1993-1994 was crowned with a participation in the finals to access the national League A, finals played in five games against Rapperswil, the latter winning it over. At the beginning of the 1994-1995 season, Lausanne Hockey Club was naturally designated as the Nationalliga B favorite to access the NLA. At the end of a fantastic season, the club had been confronted to the team of GCK Lions during the finals and after five games, the decisive match was won by Lausanne 8 to 0 in front of a raucous crowd. Lausanne Hockey Club had earned their promotion. The 1995-1996 season was particularly tough for the Lausanne Hockey Club. After a long series of losses the club decided to fire their head coach. The change didn’t prevent Lausanne from being relegated to NLB at the end of the season. During the following four seasons, the LHC occupied the middle of the NLB ranking before surprising everybody in 2000-2001 by occupying the head of the championship during almost the whole season. By winning against all the most serious opponents of NLB during the play-offs, Lausanne won the title of champion of NLB and defied HC La Chaux-de-Fonds for the promotion games. Winning against the HCC in six matches, LHC was back in NLA for the 2001-2002 season.

After relegation in the 2004-2005 season, Lausanne played the role of “favorite” for the other teams of the NLB. The club tried to reach a NLA once again through promotion, but failed twice in the promotion games 2008-2009 and the 2009-2010 seasons, losing both times against EHC Biel in seven games. In the 2012-2013 season, after a tedious start into the regular season, Lausanne won the NLB championship for the 7th time, defeating EHC Olten in the play-off final. In the following promotion games, Lausanne defeated the SCL Tigers in six games to reach again the NLA for the 2013-2014 season.

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