Northern Star: Red the Rink by Carson Gotelaere and Caden Lia

It was only fitting that the Spartans first two goals were scored by Gotelaere just seconds in, followed by a power play goal by Lia later in the first period.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Last Friday, the Superior boys hockey team traded their blue jerseys for red ones, and packed the stands for a cause bigger than hockey. An event led by seniors Caden Lia and Carson Gotelaere.

“I just wanted to because I had a personal connection, with my Grandpa and seeing everything he went through and just wanting to help out and getting the hockey team involved,” says Lia.

As part of the boys senior projects, they put on the ‘Red the Rink’ event, a game played in an effort to raise money and awareness for Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, better known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s Disease. The condition targets the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord, reducing functionality in both the upper and lower parts of the body. For these teammates the decision for this event was an easy one, as both families were impacted by the disease.

“That was my dad’s best friend growing up. So, it hurt him a lot and everyone around in our family because he was a great dude and loved by a lot of people,” says Gotelaere.

“You know, it’s a slow process so it starts off a little slower but then once it starts to go, it’s just hard to watch, it sucks. And my mom took care of him a lot and I’d go over there and see him. After so often you see him start to get worse and worse and it’s just not fun,” says Lia.

Lia and Gotelaere channeled their platform as hockey players, getting the community to rally behind the cause, selling t-shirts, raffle tickets and chuck a puck, with all proceeds donated to the ALS Foundation of Wisconsin.

“It feels really good, especially since I’m connected to it, since we both are. That we can actually have an impact, hopefully on helping other people with ALS and helping their families,” says Gotelaere.

“Up here there’s a lot of people that love hockey and will come out to all the games no matter what. So, we thought we might as well use it do a hockey game for it and it’s been great, everyone wants to help, especially if it involves the hockey team and it really brings awareness to a large group of people up here,” says Lia.

It was only fitting that the Spartans first two goals were scored by Gotelaere just seconds in, followed by a power play goal by Lia later in the first period. Although Superior lost a close one, the team raised hundreds of dollars to help families impacted by ALS win.

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