Listen here to the Weekly Radio Readings by Sheila Winstead, RCHS Board Member or tune in to WiLD 102 Radio Sunday mornings.
Recorded February 2022
February 6, 2022:
The Roseau County Museum has a new book in its collection called Tourney Time, a collection of stories about 75 years of Boys’ High School Hockey Tournaments. It was put together by David LaVaque and L. R. Nelson. The museum’s copy was a donation from Jim Stordahl, who was part of the 1958 and 1959 State High School Championship teams from Roseau. Jim and his brother Larry and teammate Don Ross were on a Top Ten Line given the nickname “The Production Line” at the ’59 tournament. The Roseau Rams had a perfect season that year.
This book has a forward by the Broten brothers, Aaron, Neal, and Paul, who also played in many tournaments for Roseau High School before going on to their hockey careers.
Each year’s tournament has a separate chapter in the book with a title noting an interesting part of the winning team’s story. 1958’s chapter is called “Border Crossing” and subtitled “Bulauca Brothers Roseau’s Handsome, Controversial Canadian Connection”. Here’s that story by L. R. Nelson:
As teenagers, Ed and Bill Bulauca made daily trips across the border dividing middle-of-nowhere Manitoba from equally remote northwestern Minnesota, barely slowing as they cruised past the uniformed customs agents stationed on both sides of the invisible line separating Canada from the United States.
“In those days, you would drive by the customs house and they would just wave to you,” Ed said. “And after eight at night, everything was closed. You just drove right through.”
The Bulauca brothers grew up in South Junction, Manitoba, a one-church, one-store, zero-stoplight community three miles due north of the US border on Highway 310. As high school sophomores, the Bulaucas began …listen for the rest of the story.
February 13, 2022:
Last week I was reading from a book donated to the Roseau County Museum by Jim Stordahl. The book is called Tourney Time, about 75 years of high school hockey tournaments, written by David LaVaque and L. R. Nelson. I’ll continue reading about the 1958 Roseau High School team that won the championship with the help of two Canadian brothers, Ed and Bill Bulauca.
Bill Bulauca was a year younger than Ed but had skipped a grade in elementary school so he could join his brother in the same classes. As freshmen, the Bulaucas had attended a boarding school in Winnipeg, one hundred miles to the north.
“I was really pleased,” Ed Bulauca said about attending Roseau High. “Because this way I got a car.”
Ed, who did all the driving, piloted a four-door 1950 Pontiac Chieftain the first year the boys commuted to Roseau, then upgraded to a sporty blue-and-white 1956 Pontiac Laurentian two-door hardtop for their junior and senior years.
The Bulauca brothers bolstered a lineup that featured several other multisport stars, including [Dick] Roth, the Stordahl brothers (Jim and Larry), bullet-shooting forward Don Ross, and superb defensemen Dale Olson and Keith Brandt.
Roseau reached the state title game again in 1958, entering the finale against St. Paul Harding with a twelve-game unbeaten streak, including a 4-0 victory over defending champion International Falls in the quarterfinals and a 6-3 rout of South St. Paul in the semifinals. The return of Larry Stordahl from an early-season knee injury …listen for the rest of the story.
February 20, 2022:
At this time of the year, there’s a lot of hockey going on. The Roseau County Museum was recently given a book for its collection by Jim Stordahl. The book is called Tourney Time and has short stories about each of 75 years of Minnesota Boys’ Hockey Tournaments. It was written by David LaVaque and L. R. Nelson and includes statistics and interesting facts about each year’s championship.
The story about 1959 by L. R. Nelson was called “Sleeping Giant” with the subtitle “Roseau Power Forward Larry Stordahl Almost Dozed through Semifinal Game”. Here’s the start of it:
Larry Stordahl preferred to do his sleeping at night. As a veteran of multiple state tournament trips, the standout Roseau forward had a trusted, proven pregame routine. Afternoon naps weren’t part of it.
But a good night’s rest had been hard to come by during the first few days of the 1959 tourney. An unfamiliar bed and loud big-city surroundings contributed to his fitfulness. By Friday afternoon, the worn-out Stordahl decided a quick snooze would leave him refreshed and ready for that night’s semifinal showdown with International Falls.
So Stordahl shut off the lights and closed the curtains in his room at the St. Paul Hotel, stretched out in his bed, and settled into a deep sleep.
As Roseau’s student manager, Jackie McDonald tended to many of the team’s behind-the-scenes tasks. He filled water bottles, he taped sticks, he washed uniforms, he folded towels.
Before every game it was his job to roust players from their hotel rooms, then help herd the stragglers across the street and through Rice Park to the St. Paul Auditorium.
McDonald was good at his work. He made his rounds with efficiency. He pounded on doors with authority. He checked and double-checked each player’s room diligently. On this evening, however ..listen for the rest of the story.
February 27, 2022:
Last Sunday’s story was from a book donated to the Roseau County Museum by Jim Stordahl. It tells about 75 years of Boys’ Hockey Tournaments, written by David LaVaque and L. R. Nelson. The name of the book is Tourney Time. The story last week was about the 1959 tournament and was called “Sleeping Giant”. Jim’s brother Larry Stordahl had decided to take a nap the afternoon of a big playoff game with International Falls. He was sleeping so hard that he didn’t hear the knocks of the student manager Jackie McDonald, and was still missing from the line-up when the team was practicing. His teammates were starting to panic. Don Ross and Jim Stordahl were two-thirds of the line that included Larry. Here’s the rest of the story.
Larry Stordahl was the puck hound. No one was better at working the corners than big Larry who at 6 foot 1 was the tallest of the trio. His wiry frame and tenacity made life miserable for opposing defensemen.
“Larry was a strong kid, and he had that long reach and could poke the puck away,” brother Jim said.
Jackie McDonald and Larry Stordahl were roommates, and earlier in the evening, as part of his appointed rounds, the sophomore manager had stuck his head in their darkened room and called out. There was no response and no movement. Stordahl must have already left for the rink, McDonald figured.
He figured wrong.
After being alerted to Stordahl’s absence, Roseau coach Oscar Almquist dispatched McDonald back to the hotel. Sure enough, Stordahl was buried under his blankets, still in a deep slumber. McDonald woke …listen for the rest of the story.
Thank you to (www.roseauonline.com) for letting us share the history of our county with your listeners by donating air time, studio time, and production staff on a weekly basis.