UND women's hockey: Roseau to host WCHA game
Roseau High School coach Brian Bergstrom shared a laugh with Mary Loken during Christmas break. "I told her that when most people graduate, they don't get to suit up in their old locker anymore," Bergstrom said. Loken will have that unique opport...
Roseau High School coach Brian Bergstrom shared a laugh with Mary Loken during Christmas break.
"I told her that when most people graduate, they don't get to suit up in their old locker anymore," Bergstrom said.
Loken will have that unique opportunity this weekend.
The UND sophomore forward will return home on Saturday as her Fighting Sioux women's hockey team takes on Bemidji State at 7:07 p.m. in Roseau's Rams Sports Center. It will serve as the first of a two-game series between the Western Collegiate Hockey Association teams.
Bergstrom helped set up the event with assistance from UND coach Brian Idalski and Bemidji State coach Steve Sertich. He's expecting the arena to be nearly full as all youth hockey players get free admission if they are wearing a hockey jersey and adults can get in for just $5.
"It's such a privilege to have them up here," Bergstrom said. "Surely, our hats are off to both North Dakota and Bemidji State for allowing us this opportunity. For fans up in northern Minnesota to be able to see a WCHA hockey game is a great opportunity. And it's a game that means a lot for both clubs." Bemidji State currently sits in fourth place with 29 points. UND is in fifth with 26.
Loken, a sophomore forward, has two goals and six points. She's played in all 20 games this season.
"She's such a good kid, Idalski said. "She's able to go back home like that and show people who haven't had a chance to come down and see her play in person in the last two years how much she's developed. I know she's improved a ton in the last couple years." Because UND will be using Roseau's home locker room, Loken will be able to find her own locker and suit up where she did as a standout for the Rams.
"It will be a joy," Bergstrom said. "I had Mary since she was an eighth-grader. She's an outstanding person and an outstanding athlete." There are other ties as well. UND assistant coach Erik Fabian played for the Rams earlier this decade. The Sioux also have verbal commitments from four Warroad High School players Layla Marvin, Lisa Marvin, Shelby Amsley-Benzie and Kayla Gardner. Warroad is just a few miles from Roseau.
"Obviously, the Roseau and Warroad area is in our backyard," Idalski said. "It will be nice to be involved in this game exposure-wise and to support hockey up there." This isn't the first Division I hockey game that Roseau has hosted. A few years ago, Wisconsin and Bemidji State played a regular-season game there. Bergstrom said the bleachers were full all the way to the top.
The day will begin with a junior varsity game at noon. The varsity team will play at 2 p.m. And the main event is at 7:07.
"I think the atmosphere is going to be tremendous," Idalski said. "I know they are expecting to pack the place. Anytime you can fill something to capacity, the noise and energy are going to be very good. This will be a neat experience."
Reach Schlossman at (701) 780-1129; (800) 477-6572, ext. 129; or send e-mail to email@example.com .