Josh Tubbs watches a golf ball fly through the air after swinging his driver Saturday at the Albert Lea Hockey Open. Proceeds from the event support youth hockey in Albert Lea. — Micah Bader/Albert Lea Tribune
Josh Tubbs watches a golf ball fly through the air after swinging his driver Saturday at the Albert Lea Hockey Open. Proceeds from the event support youth hockey in Albert Lea. — Micah Bader/Albert Lea Tribune

Supporting youth hockey

Published 9:18am Monday, August 26, 2013

Albert Lea Hockey Association and Blue Line Club raises money for programs

Golfers swung their clubs Saturday to support a different sport: hockey.

Green Lea Golf Course hosted the Albert Lea Hockey Open, a tournament that raises money for the Albert Lea Hockey Association and the Blue Line Club — the Albert Lea High School hockey booster club — to pay for expenses like ice, coaches and equipment, said Brad Loch.

Loch is a co-chairman of the Albert Lea Hockey Association with Scott Thompson.

“It’s all about the kids and raising money to keep hockey the cheapest in the state for Albert Lea,” Loch said. “Our board’s mission is to get the young kids involved.”

Blake Adams, a former player and 2009 graduate of Albert Lea High School, was happy to be part of the event.

“It’s fun and a good way to support Albert Lea hockey,” he said.

Current players also were involved by overseeing challenges and opportunities to donate money throughout the course. High school players Matthew Carlson and Lucas Hacker, oversaw hole No. 13. They agreed the 18-hole best-shot tournament with 36 four-person teams gets them excited for the season.

Among the groups of golfers was Dave Braaten, who participated for the third year. Four of his grandchildren take part in Albert Lea hockey programs.

The event also included a dinner, raffle and auction. Auction items included a pair of hockey jerseys and sticks autographed by Darcy Kuemper and Clayton Stoner of the Minnesota Wild. The duo came to Albert Lea along with Wild radio analyst and former Minnesota North Star Tom Reid as part of the Minnesota Wild Road Tour on June 26.

The Albert Lea Hockey Association planned several events for the fall season, including a 2-and-2 challenge and Albert Lea Youth Hockey Night. Event specifics will be announced when they are determined.