Hawks and Rails come together for a greater cause

DULUTH, MN. (KBJR6) – Two Northland teams come together on the ice for a greater cause than the scoreboard indicates after three periods.

The top-ranked Class A Hawks and Proctor Rails will play in their first-ever “Raise Mental Health” outreach game Thursday night at Hermantown Ice Arena. The Hawks and Rails have partnered with the Minnesota Hockey Coaches Association to raise awareness and shine light on the ice about mental health.

Motivation has flowed from the NHL and college ranks as the next levels of hockey continue to make mental health a centralized topic within their teams.

Hermantown head coach Pat Andrews also wanted to do more. Andrews says the boys have responded very well and he looks forward to continuing to create a safe place for his players to have more mental health conversations.

“We try to make it acceptable to talk about it, to de-stigmatize it. If you had a broken arm, you would go to the doctor and have your arm examined. For some reason we associate mental health/mental illness as if you aren’t tough if you have it. Really, it affects everyone in their lifetime at some point and allows for having those conversations and letting people know that it’s okay to not be okay. It’s just that we want you to say something about it and talk about it,” Andrews said.

In Thursday’s game, players will represent the color of sanity with green socks and green tape. Green wristbands will also be available for purchase. The Hawks will give that money to Amber Wing.

The puck drop is at 7:00 p.m.

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