Anatomy of Gray: Senior goalie Jamison Gray leads Midgets into final home gameDespite the countless hours he has spent saving goals in net, Dickinson High senior goaltender Jamison Gray can still remember his first high school win.
By: Royal McGregor, The Dickinson Press
Despite the countless hours he has spent saving goals in net, Dickinson High senior goaltender Jamison Gray can still remember his first high school win.
“It was Hazen,” Gray said after a brief moment of thinking.
In fact, Gray was in net for the team’s only two wins during his sophomore season.
Two years later, Gray will be making his final home start against Bismarck High at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Dickinson Recreation Center.
“It’s going to be sad day,” Gray said. “I’ve played in this rink since I was five. I want to win. It’s definitely a game that we can win. I’m going to give everything I have and I know everyone else as well.”
The other five seniors joining Gray for their final home game are Jayden Mink, Brendin Steiner, Austin Krank, Trevor Coates and Hunter Jerome.
“Between what they’ve done for our team and what they’ve done for the whole hockey club, they deserve that night,” Dickinson head coach Tom Folske said. “Their teammates know that and they play a little harder for them. Those guys understand, that’s it, that’s their last home game and they play a little harder.”
Gray’s senior year has been Dickinson’s best since the 2008-2009 season. Through 17 games this season, the Midgets have 6-11 overall record, surpassing the team’s combined win total from the previous two seasons.
“We’ve had a lot of younger guys coming up and they’ve been used to winning,” Gray said. “That just carried over with them.”
Gray won his opening two starts against Williston and Bottineau-Rugby. However, he hasn’t been in net for a win since the team visited Bottineau-Rugby for a 6-5 shootout victory on Dec. 1.
Nevertheless, Gray has remained strong in goal in his last three starts, giving up an average of 3.33 goals per contest.
“Jamison is a hard worker,” Folske said. “He’ll do anything and everything to keep that puck out of the net.”
Dickinson junior goaltender Brett Schweitzer said he has been able to learn from Gray’s example on and off the ice.
“He’s a leader,” Schweitzer said. “He’s not really a verbal leader, but he does it with his actions.
“He’s definitely taught me a lot, especially how to handle the pressure situations before games and everything. When I have those jitters, he talks to me and calms me down. I look up to him for that.”
Gray said he’s there to assist Schweitzer and vice versa. It isn’t much of a change from last season when Gray looked to Matt Porter, now a freshman student at the University of North Dakota, before and after games.
“Schweitzer helps me and I help him,” Gray said. “There’s definitely stuff that we both can work on, but we try to help each other out as much as possible. We are both on the same team and we have the same goal.”
Though it will be Gray’s final home game, he feels extremely comfortable with where the program is headed.
“I feel we have an excellent program,” Gray said. “All the coaches know what they are talking about.”
Killdeer girls are in a marathon stretch of games
The Killdeer girls basketball team had a lull of games from the Christmas break into the first part of January.
That lull is over now.
The Cowboys have three games in a span of six days and are 1-0 in the week thus far, defeating Hettinger-Scranton 51-44 on Monday. Killdeer travels to Hebron-Glen Ullin 6:30 p.m. Thursday for a District 14 game and hosts Beach at 5 p.m. Saturday.
“We’re kind of on a marathon of games right now,” Killdeer head coach Sarah Doe said. “Each practice between these games has been real important to work on little things that we can do better.”
Killdeer’s main component to the 5-6 overall and 2-0 District 14 start has been junior forward Morgan LeMieux. She is averaging 12.4 points per game, which ranks sixth in Region 7.
Though LeMieux’s contributions have been seen both offensively and defensively, Doe believes the biggest asset the junior forward brings is the ability to open the floor for everyone else.
“Morgan has worked on her game year-round and she’s got a definite passion for the game,” Doe said. “She’s been a huge factor for our team.
“If other teams key in on her, it opens up opportunities for everyone else. It’s a win-win situation.”
Doe said the team is still learning to work together and the main goal is be completely ready tournament time.
“Every game has been a building game for us,” she said. “We have a lot of talent. We’re just working to get it all to happen at the same time for us.”
Midgets use week break to fine tune fundamentals
The Dickinson High wrestling team has two weeks off from the end of the Belle Fourche (S.D.) Invitational last Saturday to the West Region Tournament, which is Feb. 9 in Williston.
During the two-week hiatus from competition, the Midgets aren’t looking to learn new moves, but simply fine tune what they’ve been doing.
“It’s really important for the kids to focus on their style of wrestling,” Dickinson co-head coach Cody Wolf said. “They’re not going to pick up any new moves from here on out. All their moves they want to use are set in stone.”
Dickinson received a present on its way back from Belle Fourche when they learned the team had reached the Class A state dual tournament as the West’s No. 3 seed thanks to Minot High earning wins over Turtle Mountain and Jamestown.
Wolf said the team has a breath of fresh air.
“The team is excited about it,” Wolf said. “It not only helps your confidence going into the state tournament, but it allows you to bring other people into the state tournament as alternates.”
The Belle Fourche invite also proved to be a confidence builder. The Midgets had 12 wrestlers place, while Austin Hutzenbiler and Devin Berger each won individual championships.
“That played a big role in why we go down there this time of the year,” Wolf said.