Congratulations to Somerset High School on being presented with the Boys Hockey Sportsmanship Award!

We believe there’s something more important than just winning or losing a tournament. We believe that the team, school, and fans who support their athletes with dignity and class are the true champions. That’s why we’ve proudly sponsored the WIAA/Rural Mutual Insurance Sportsmanship Award for 56 years. 

We would like to congratulate Somerset High School on being this year’s recipient of the Boys Hockey Sportsmanship award. 

Somerset Boys Hockey

When talking with Head Coach, Dan Gilkerson, we asked him what this award meant to him as a coach, the team and community along with how they teach their athletes about sportsmanship. 

As a coaching staff and team, we are honored and could not be prouder to receive this award. We spend more time with our team working on our family culture than we do teaching and learning hockey. It is rewarding for the players and coaches to be recognized because of how hard we work at it.

At the beginning of each season we set goals and expectations as a group. We talk about how we act and how we treat each other, our opponents, officials, teachers and members of our community. Having our athletes take ownership and work with each other and the coaching staff to set these expectations enhances the development and growth of the collective group. We have formed a partnership; we answer to each other and hold each other accountable every day.  

As coaches and players, we realize it is our responsibility to each other to continue to develop quality characteristics that we as a team will be prideful of. We believe we are never finished and will always work to continue to grow. We have created an environment that we all want to be a part of. We have fun, we compete and when we have player’s and coaches with the right attitude who truly care about each other in the right environment, everyone wants to be a part of it and success follows. We believe good Sportsmanship is a direct result of all these efforts.

Our community is proud of us and has been so supportive the past two years that we have made it to state. This award means a lot to everyone in our small town and we are so thankful for their support. Seeing pictures and videos of people watching the live stream of our game all over town was amazing. Spartan Pride! WE NOT ME!

Coach Gilkerson is in his 16th season as the Head Coach at Somerset HS and 18th season overall with the program. His assistant coach Ryan Dalzell has been with him every step of the way. For us it is fairly easy to recognize hockey talent and help them improve their skills on the ice but our favorite part of coaching is seeing the growth of each player as an individual person. It is truly amazing to see them transform from a player just trying to fit in, to a senior leading the team and holding teammates accountable for doing things the right way.  

Coach Gilkerson said; “We really want every athlete that we coach to have a positive experience and feel valued. We want them to know that they are part of what we have built and what we continue to build towards. We are never finished!”

Congratulation again on a great season and winning the WIAA/Rural Mutual Sportsmanship award. This is a great achievement for the Somerset community.