Jan. 28, 2009
Duluth's Stars use combined power to win
By Jon Nowacki
As controversy continues over the Duluth school
district’s plan to close Central High School, life goes on
for one sport that combines athletes from all three public high
schools: girls hockey.
For the past three years, members of the Duluth
Northern Stars have put rivalries aside for the sake of the team,
and the results have been good. This year is no different, as evidenced
by Duluth’s 3-2 victory over Proctor-Hermantown-Marshall on
Tuesday night at the DECC for the Northern Stars’ fifth straight
“Our kids grew up playing together, so this
whole combining thing is a non-issue,” said Amber Fryklund,
who coaches Duluth with former UMD men’s hockey assistant
Jim Knapp. “It’s nothing new. They get along great.”
Leading the way are six-year staples Laura Bellamy
(Denfeld) and Gina Dodge (East).
Bellamy finished with 33 saves while Dodge had
two goals as the Northern Stars (16-3-3) got just enough offense
to beat the speedy Mirage (16-5-1), who outshot them 35-15 and 15-4
after the first period to take a 1-0 lead.
Just when it looked as if PHM might roll to victory,
Duluth’s Tyra Kerr scored on the power play 56 seconds into
the second period as momentum shifted in what could be a Section
7AA playoff primer.
“That penalty kind of threw us into a defensive
shell, and we didn’t get out of it until the period was almost
over,” Mirage coach Glen Gilderman said. “We’d
love to see them again, but it’s a really strong, wide open
section, so you never know.”
Dodge put Duluth ahead 2-1 at 10:22 by putting
in a rebound, and she scored again 2 minutes later with a backhanded
shot on the power play. Julia Gilbert trimmed the lead to 3-2 later
in the period, but the high-scoring Mirage would get no closer as
Bellamy was strong in the third period, stopping 13 shots.
Dodge said she wasn’t surprised by Bellamy’s
Bellamy has committed to playing college hockey
at Harvard and Dodge at Minnesota Duluth. The two have known each
other since the seventh grade, when Bellamy already was starting
in net for Denfeld-Central and Dodge was part of the forward rotation.
“It was a little scary being 12 or 13 years
old playing with 18 year olds, but in these kind of games, we’ve
got experience now,” Bellamy said.
Bellamy said the Northern Stars have helped girls
from different schools get to know each other.
After two years with Denfeld-Central, Dodge, who
went to middle school at Ordean, attended East in the ninth grade.
She played for the Greyhounds for a season before Duluth went to
one team the following year because of a numbers shortage.
“It was pretty fun my freshman year because
their entire team [Denfeld-Central] hated me, but it’s all
good now,” Dodge said, laughing.
Proctor-Hermantown-Marshall ..... 1-1-0—2
Duluth ........................................... 0-3-0—3
First period — 1. PHM, Bekah Norton (Hannah Buchite), 10:44.
Second period — 2. D, Tyra Kerr (Linnea Chruscielski), :56
(pp); 3. D, Gina Dodge (Chruscielski), 10:22; 4. D, Dodge (Stephanie
Lenz), 12:30 (pp); 5. PHM, Julia Gilbert, 13:58.
Saves — Anja Morris, PHM, 12; Laura Bellamy, D, 33.