Girls who are used to competing against each other will come together as one to play a game they love -- hockey.
The Brainerd School District's student activities committee agreed Wednesday to recommend to the school board to enter into a cooperative agreement with area school districts to allow girls to play on the Brainerd girls' hockey team.
An agreement was in place a month ago, but was dropped because there were not enough girls interested to play the sport. Now there are more girls interested in being on the team, said Todd Selk, Brainerd activities director.
Two girls from the Crosby-Ironton School District have already started to pass the puck around with the Brainerd Warriors.
"I hope that once they have the Brainerd uniform they can work together to do the best for the Brainerd School District. No matter if they are from Crosby or Pequot Lakes they are part of a team and I truly believe that if there are any differences it would be set aside." Todd Selk Brainerd activities director
"We found that kids are kids and they adapt faster than adults," Roger Twigg, athletic director at C-I, said about students from different school districts playing on the same team. "It may create uncomfortableness at the beginning, just like a new kid, but in athletics they accept each other more quickly because they realize that they are going to help the team and have skills."
"I hope that once they have the Brainerd uniform they can work together to do the best for the Brainerd School District," said Selk. "No matter if they are from Crosby or Pequot Lakes they are part of a team and I truly believe that if there are any differences it would be set aside."
The Pequot Lakes School District plans to drop out of the agreement because there are not enough girls who want to play hockey. Bob Ayd, the school's athletic director, thought one or two girls were interested, but they aren't anymore.
Last year girls in Crosby-Ironton, Pequot Lakes and Aitkin played hockey on the same team, but this year there were not enough students interested to play so the districts dropped the program.
"This (agreement) gives the students an opportunity to play the sport," said Selk. "We are in the business for kids."
Students in neighboring communities participating in Brainerd programs, however, is nothing new. A handful of area students have been involved in soccer, gymnastics and the swimming programs in Brainerd. One Crosby-Ironton student has been playing on the Brainerd soccer team for two seasons.
Girls from area school districts are responsible for traveling to and from the practice site and the bus departure site, so there would be no transportation costs to the Brainerd district. Students are also required to pay a $35 athletic fee.
Twigg said the agreement among the districts is good because it allows students to play a sport they love and it also gets people in the communities together.
There are currently 29 players in the Brainerd girls' hockey program, which began five years ago.
Brainerd Dispatch ©2013. All Rights Reserved.