ZACHARY STEVEN KAFKA
September 13, 1985 to July 27, 2004 ALWAYS IN OUR MEMORY
Zach’s team victorious in memorial hockey game. NOW 3-W 1-L
The fourth annual Zach Kafka Memorial Hockey game was held on Saturday, March 1 at the Lee Community Center in Morris.
For the third straight year, Zach’s team came out on top, as they defeated the Challengers 6-4. The skaters on both teams had a lot of fun on the ice and many fans from the area enjoyed cheering them on.
The Challengers scored the lone goal of the first period, as first time player Pete Lundberg scored an unassisted goal.
Things really heated up for Zach’s Team in the second period as Josh Benck, Brian “Peggy” Shelstad and Cody Backstrand each scored unassisted goals to put Zach’s Team on Top 3-1.
Jesse Holtquist then answered for the Challengers with an unassisted goal to cut into the lead. But Zach’s team was not to be denied as Josh Benck scored his second goal of the game, with an assist by Nate Raffety and then Luke Kafka scored on an assist by Cody Haukos to put Zach’s Team up 5-2 after two periods.
In the third period, Cody Haukos scored for Zach’s Team to make the score 6-2. The Challengers Doug Wiley then broke loose for an unassisted goal and later assisted on a goal by Jesse Holtquist to end the game at 6-4.
Coaching Zach’s team again this year was Bob Johnson. Playing for Zach’s Team were: Zach Raffety, “Peggy” Shelstad, Christina Shelstad, Cody Backstrand, Cody Haukos, Dalton Dewitt, Jimmy Laub, Josh Benck, Josh Zahn, Kole Arndt, Kyle Arndt, Luke Kafka, Nate Raffety, Nick Stolpman, Tom Bailey and goalie Curtis Nelson.
Coaching the Challengers was Dick Raffety. Team members consisted of Luke Backstrand, Jason Oakes, Brent Hanratty, Jessie Holtquist, Stacy Homan, Ron Sharstrom, Rich Raffety, Pete Lundberg, Paul Tinklenberg, Nick Thymian, Micah Raffety, Kor Mulder, Josh Tinklenberg, Doug Wiley, Garth Haukos, Craig Schlemme, Colin Raffety, Aaron Zahn and goalie Steve Raffety.
The game raised just over $4,300, with the proceeds going to a scholarship endowment fund for the children of Paul Tinklenberg of Willmar in memory of Paul’s wife Beth, who passed away last summer.
Paul and his family are former members of Ortonville, and Paul was very active in his time in Ortonville with the Big Stone Lake Area Hockey Association.
The game is played in memory of Dan Kafka’s son Zach, who died suddenly at the age of 18 in 2004. Zach played goalie for the Big Stone Lake Area Junior varsity team, so Dan decided to hold a game in his memory each year.
Many teammates of Zach’s come back and play in the game against a challenging team.
Dan has also created the Zach Kafka Memorial Fund in his son’s memory dedicating a scholarship to a graduating senior. They are currently taking applications for scholarships. For more information, log onto www.rememberzach.net