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Cloquet native makes good choices during historic hockey brawl

Former Cloquet-Esko-Carlton girls hockey star Carley Esse was in the middle of an historic event in women's hockey -- and managed to stay a spectator in one of the most bizarre events in the history of the college game.

Esse's Bemidji State Beavers had just defeated Ohio State on the road last Friday night when some of the Buckeyes took exception to Bemidji players celebrating on Ohio State ice.

The result was a full-scale brawl that saw 19 players ejected -- nine Beavers and 10 Buckeyes -- and the total penalty minutes for the game zoomed from 16 to a record-setting 318.

That's an all-time record for any college hockey game -- men's or women's -- at any level. And Esse wasn't involved in the fracas.

The old record was 268 minutes in a Hockey East game between Boston University and Maine on Jan. 24, 2004.

How depleted were the rosters for Saturday's rematch? Each team could only skate two forward lines and two sets of defense, with each team dressing only 12 players counting goaltenders. 

Esse, who played defense, scored her first collegiate point in Saturday's rematch, assisting on the team's first goal in a game that finished in a 2-2 tie but which the Beavers won in a shootout.

This season, Esse has one assist in eight games for the Beavers (4-6-2), and has not been penalized.