Years Played: 1926, 1927, 1933
Neil Gabler was born in Brooklyn, New York and moved to Sarnia, Ontario, where he played hockey in a church league and for the Sarnia Collegiate Institute. At Michigan, he played defense in the 1925-1926, 1926-1927, and 1932-1933 seasons for Coaches Joseph Barss and Eddie Lowrey. He was named All-Conference defenseman in 1925-1926 and 1926-1927. He was elected captain for the 1927-1928 season, but an injury delayed his schooling until he returned five years later in 1932. Coach Barss awarded him three Maize and Blue ribbons, attached around a cigar for his three goals scored in 1926-1927. The team that season combined for only seventeen goals.
His most memorable experience was at Wisconsin when Michigan was down to only three men on the ice. Goalie Steve Jones was put off for a two-minute tripping penalty, leaving Neil Gabler and another defenseman, Roach, left on the ice. Neil Gabler went into the goal where Wisconsin shot at him. He stopped the puck and started up the ice to kill off Jones’ penalty. Wisconsin did not score on that power play.
His most important goal was a game-tying goal against Minnesota in a game that Michigan finally won in three overtimes, tying for the Conference Championship. With only minutes left, he raced the length of the ice, scored, and went head first into the goal post, knocking him out. Neil Gabler graduated from the College of Architecture. He designed the East Quadrangle dormitory on Central Campus, the Mortimer E. Cooley Building and the Phoenix Memorial Laboratory Building on North Campus, the first “M Club” room in the old Yost Field House, and the Penguinarium at the Detroit Zoo. Neil Gabler passed away 14 September 1988.
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