PLYMOUTH, Minn. - It's not often that a junior varsity hockey game gets this much attention. But, Monday's game between Benilde St. Margaret's and Wayzata was less about hockey and a lot more about healing.
"I think therapeutic is a good word for that," said Benilde-St. Margaret's Varsity hockey coach Ken Pauly. "Because you know, everyone has to move on."
"It was fun to just get out there and play," said BSM Junior Forward Tanner Ahlborn. "And get the monkey off of our back.
The game had been postponed by a month, originally scheduled for days after Jack Jablonski's injury in December. It's clear Jablonski is on everyone's mind. The game is slow to start with very little contact.
"We've been overly tentative the last five weeks and we're trying to correct that," said BSM Junior Varsity coach Chris McGowan. "But it's a process and it's gonna take time."
Part of that process is visiting with Jack. His teammates have been by his side as often as possible. Support that has done wonders for him and his teammates.
"I knew he was tough just didn't know he was this tough, " described Ahlborn. "He is in there working every day and it inspires me to work harder."
The player that hit Jablonksi was on the ice Monday. Benilde-St. Maragaret's players took the opportunity to lift him up.
"He is one of my good buddies," said Ahlborn. "So every day I am talking to him encouraging him."
"We hugged and I told him to hang in there," said McGowan.
"He is a good kid no one feels worse than him."
With a goal late in the third period Wayzata won the game 1-0. But in the end the final score of the game seemed insignificant compared to the therapy provided those involved.
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