Roseau has a storied hockey tradition that dates back to 1908 which was the first season of organized high school hockey. However, it wasn’t until 1945 that the Minnesota High School League officially sanctioned the game as we know it today. Roseau has captured seven state championships over the past 68 years with the most recent in 2007. Roseau’s holds the record for their 34 state tournament appearances.
Roseau’s first championship dates back to 1946 when they were known as the Green wave and were led by Rube Bjorkman notching a hattrick in a 6-0 shutout win over Rochester. Bjorkman later went on to represent the United States in the 1948 and 1952 Winter Olympics games.
In 1953, Roseau made their first appearance at state known as the Rams with return trips in 1955 and 1957 before winning back-to-back championships in 1958 and 1959.
After failing to defend their Region 8 crown in 1960 the Rams came back strong in 1961 capturing their third championship in four years as they defeated South St. Paul 1-0. The Ram’s Dave Backlund scored the game’s lone goal midway through the first period. Following the 1967 season, long time head coach, Oscar Almquist, retired after a 24 years behind the Rams bench.
The ‘70s had probably the most legendary teams in Roseau history as the Broten brothers; Neal and Aaron along with linemate Bryan “Butsy” Erickson were dominant with state tournament appearances in 1977, 1978 and 1979. After a disappointing finish in the 1977 state tournament, the Rams entered the tourney the following year undefeated and the hands-down favorite to walk away with the title. After a win over Rochester John-Marshall in the quarter finals the Rams faced a familiar foe in the Edina Hornets but found similar fate as the previous year and were defeated 5-3.
The ‘80s had the Rams making three state tournament appearances in 1981, 1983 and 1984. The 1984 team was led by Paul Broten who was the last of the three Broten brothers to lace them up for the Rams.
After two decades without a state championship the Rams didn’t wait very long to change the trend in 1990 as Roseau beat Grand Rapids 3-1 to claim their fifth state title and first in 29 years. Senior, Chris Gotziaman, paced the Rams to the win with two goals. Nine years later, the Rams would raise another banner in Memorial Arena as they defeated the Hastings Raiders 4-0 in the 1999 state Class AA final. Mike Klema had the hot hand for the tournament scoring six goals to lead the Rams to the title.
The Rams captured their seventh state title in 2007 with an impressive 5-1 victory over another northern power Grand Rapids Thunderhawks. The Rams were led by sophomore, Tyler Landman, who recorded two goals in the win.
The rich hockey tradition continues as passionately today, as in the past, as the Rams emulate previous accomplishment, yet aspire for their own successes.
Provided by: Rams Hockey Online