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Middle school hockey team wins state title, despite not having ice to practice on

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CHARLESTON, W.V. (WOWK) – The West Virginia Wild is a middle school hockey team, that won a state championship Sunday.

“First time ever for us to even go to a state competition, playing against other teams, and we won it,” said Carson Martin.

This team is special; and their story is inspirational.

As many know, the ice rink in South Charleston has been broken down for roughly two months now.

“It’s weird not being able to skate,” said Ethan Tyler. “I would come down here every now and then, come down here every Tuesday and Thursday, and I’d skate… and I don’t have that now.”

The Wild’s usual rink is nothing but dirt. For seven weeks, the boys had to practice in sneakers with tennis balls.

“It’s weird,” says Tyler. “It’s a weird feeling, practicing with skates on compared to without skates on.”

Despite not having ice, this team never lost heart.

“It’s an odd feeling but it doesn’t hamper our spirits or anything,” said Tyler. “We always get out there and we play hockey.”

And playing hockey is what they did; all the way to the state title game.

“It didn’t seem real at first because we were down, and losing,” said Michael Lao. “Then after the ice cut we kind of came back then won by one.”

“We went into the locker room and started screaming and yelling,” said Martin. “We were just celebrating the entire time and on the ice threw our gloves off and threw sticks off.”

A state championship team, that despite facing one of the biggest obstacles, made it out on top.

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