By HDN staff
The Hi-Line was treated to sports in its purest form last night when the Great Falls Americans ventured north to the Havre Ice Dome.
The Americans, temporarily displaced by the Montana Pro Rodeo Finals being held at their normal home, took the opportunity to support junior hockey in Havre. The Americans agreed to play a exhibition game against the Ventura Mariners of California here.
From the moment the first puck dropped at center ice, it was apparent the visiting Californians were out of their league as well as their climate. To their credit they played hard and rallied to make the score appear closer than the game really was.
Not surprising, however, because effort is what makes amateur hockey so entertaining.
Few if any of these players will ever skate for a living. They play for merely the love of a game that has been part of their life for as long as they can remember.
What they found in Havre was a sold out arena of appreciative, if not totally knowledgeable, fans. The Americans routinely play before larger crowds, but we doubt if they play before louder crowds.
Both teams found out what the rest of Montana is discovering. Havre is quickly becoming quite a hockey town. The credit for hockey emergence falls directly on the shoulders of the parents, who have built the junior hockey program in Havre. The Havre Ice Dome serves as a testament to their dedication.
Havre is just waking up to the many benefits that the youth hockey program has and will continue to bring to this community.
We think this city owes a debt of gratitude to the Havre Youth Hockey Program. We would also like to thank the Great Falls Americans and Havre Youth Hockey for last night's show. It was so much fun why not do it again.