Keweenaw Storm continues to make us proud

Often times in the world of sports, pride is preceded by pain. The agony of defeat, as it has come to be known, overshadows, for the moment, the reality of the accomplishment. Sunday’s loss in the national championship game by the Keweenaw Storm U-19 girl’s hockey team is surely an example.

When the storm lost in the final game, 2-1 to Cape Cod, for many, their first thoughts may have been “Oh no, not again.” Referring to last year’s heart breaking championship loss. In fact, Sunday’s game marked the Storm’s third loss in a national championship game in four years.

But “not again,” isn’t the way we should be looking at it.

Consider that Sunday marked the Storm’s third runner-up finish over that span. A span that included four state championships and annual dominance in pool play. Three times in the past four years our local team wound up being the number two team in the country. That’s an amazing run.

What coach Glenn Patrick and his team have done year after year is incredible. Although a national championship has eluded them once more, their continual precense as one of the premier women’s hockey teams in the nation is a testiment to the hard work of the players and the support of their families, friends and this community. The Storm’s regular appearence on the national scene certainly could only be accomplished by the generosity of sponsors and the fundraising efforts of the parents, coaches and players themselves.

We’ve had a couple of days to let the sting of defeat swell into the pride we feel for what these astounding young women have accomplished, not only this year but over the past four years.

Coach Patrick said it best. “With the support from the people back home, they (team) realized their hard work is appreciated … they have nothing to be ashamed of.”

Indeed. In both victory and in defeat the Keweenaw Storm have represented our community, with pride, integrity and, most importantly, with class.

Thank you Keweenaw Storm. And congratulations on a job well done.