Local News

Bette Grande: Women’s hockey has come a long way in a short period of time

Article by Bette Grande

*This article first appeared in The Fargo Forum on Sunday, Feb. 25th

What a game! I am proud of the U.S. women’s hockey team. Proud, but not one bit surprised. Women’s hockey has come a long way since we first strapped skates on our baby girl, and I have been blessed with a front row seat. Girls hockey was just getting started and most of the girls were playing on boys’ teams, learning the game from their big brothers. Today, many hockey fans prefer the flow and skill of the women’s game.

The loss of women’s hockey at the University of North Dakota is a story for another day. Today, we celebrate the accomplishments of a dedicated team of athletes. Each player on the team has a compelling story, and people in this area have watched several of these players for years.

In my time as a hockey mom of three skaters, we watched and cheered on several of the players from this Olympic team. We watched Gigi Marvin play against our son and the Lamoureux twins going through the ranks. We watched Brianna Decker during the USA Hockey Select 17 camp in Lake Placid on the same team as our daughter, her skill and leadership was obvious. Yes, these young girls were talented, but they did not achieve their success over the years by talent alone. Their success, both individually and as a team, is the result of dedication, commitment and hours, months and years of hard work. Each player is also quick to express gratitude to their families for the support and commitment to pursue their dreams.

Brad Schlossman’s excellent article on the gold medal game included a great quote from Tessa Bonhomme, a former Canadian Olympian, “I’ve played against Jocelyne Lamoureux so many times. She knows how to get under my skin. I had a really hard time cheering for her all this time, but my goodness, the Lamoureux twins were my favorite players in this tournament. They were the engine driving this team.”

Yes, I imagine that competing against the Lamoureux twins was not a pleasant experience. They approach the game and their opponents the same way they approach their training and preparation: Motivated, driven and relentless. Much better to have them on your team!

Amazing and powerful role models not just for young women but for all of us. These women have now achieved the one goal that had eluded them. A goal that drove them during those early morning off-season workouts, drove them through the injuries and the let-downs. Talent, yes, but passion and persistence as well.

Women’s hockey has come a long way in a short period of time. We celebrate this latest achievement with these amazing players, but we also take away an important lesson on what it takes to achieve our goals. And I expect these talented women will continue to lead by example as they set new goals.

*Grande represented the 41st District in the N.D. Legislature from 1996 to 2014. She is a wife, mom, grandma, research fellow with the Heartland Institute, lover of life and Jesus. 

*This article first appeared in The Fargo Forum on Sunday, Feb. 25th

*Ian Grande is the Editor of the Stanley Gazette. If you have any comments or concerns please email StanleyGazette@gmail.com

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Categories: Local News, Local Sports

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