Girls’ hockey beats Benilde

Team credits success to leadership and preparation


Caroline Green

Senior Katie Fredrickson keeps her eye on the puck during the girls’ varsity hockey game Jan. 11 at the Rec Center. Hopkins-Park beat Benilde-St. Margaret’s 3-2.

Nicole Sanford, Ruby Stillman, and

Walking off the ice after Hopkins-Park’s 3-2 win against its rival team, junior Mary Gleason said the victory made her feel proud.

“(I felt) amazing (when I scored), obviously against the team that everybody hates. This is the team you want to beat,” Gleason said.

Coach Chris Erickson also expressed satisfaction with the team’s performance.

“The first period was good, the second period we had the little casual laps in there, but the third period they worked hard,” Erickson said. “Benilde’s a good team, and they came out with some speed, and we tried to match it, match their intensity. So I was very happy with our effort today.”

According to Gleason, the team anticipated to defeat it’s opponent.

“We for sure expected to beat them,” Gleason said. “I thought it was pretty good other than the second period — we played pretty well the whole game other than a couple minutes in the second (period).”

Gleason said a difficult practice and group motivation effectively prepared her for the game.

“We had a good practice…worked hard,” Gleason said. “A lot of (my preparation involves) energy in the locker room, getting prepared for warm-ups and all that.”

Erickson said his conscious efforts to prepare the team in many ways p

aid off.

“We had a very intense practice…we worked them hard and talked about everybody doing their own part, bringing their own, playing 100 percent, and I think a lot of them did that today,” Erickson said.

According to Erickson, Gleason exudes leadership through her work ethic. Gleason assisted on two of the team’s goals and netted one of her own.

“The whole senior group is great leadership, plus you got Mary Gleason today that played (and) got a point on every goal,” 

Erickson said. “She works hard, and she’s a great kid, and she’s got a lot of skills. So I think she’s got a next level of leadership that’s going to come in and fill in for these seniors when they graduate.”

Gleason said she hopes this win will drive the team through the rest of its challenging season.

“We have a really tough schedule,” Gleason said. “We have Lake Conference where we play Edina, Wayzata, all them, and hopefully this game will propel us through those, but they’re tough teams, top teams in the state, so I don’t know.”

Hopkins-Park’s next game will be against Eden Prairie at 7 p.m. Jan. 16 at the Eden Prairie Community Center.