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Hockey: CEC alumni vs. high school tradition continues

Cloquet-Esko-Carlton high school player Dea DeLeon grabs the puck from alumna Sadie Lundquist during the annual alumni verses high school players games Monday, Dec. 24. Lundquist is playing her first season with the National Women's Hockey League's Minnesota Whitecaps. Jamie Lund/Pine Journal1 / 2
Cloquet-Esko-Carlton high school player Logan Dushkin tries to poke the puck away from alumnus Westin Michaud, a senior at Colorado College, during the annual alumni versus high school games Monday, Dec. 24. Jamie Lund/Pine Journal2 / 2

The annual tradition of Cloquet-Esko-Carlton hockey alumni playing against the current high school team originated in roughly the late 1980s, according to girls assistant coach Dave Esse.

The women's alumni team is much younger than the men's. Richard Bartholdi moved from coaching high school boys hockey in 1997 to starting a girls team because his daughter, Brigitte, and a few of her friends wanted their own team. Once those players began graduating, many of them returned to play with their former teammates in the alumni games.

This year's games Monday, Dec. 24, had fewer men and women alumni players than in the past. The alumni women even needed to borrow a goalie from the high school team.