Hockey rivals Long Beach, Bethpage pay tribute to player fatally hit by car
Rivals on the ice came together Wednesday night to pay tribute to a Long Beach teenager who died last month after being hit by a car.
The Long Beach High School hockey team faced off against Bethpage at the Town of Oyster Bay Ice Skating Center.
The players and coach say they leaned on each other for support as they took to the ice without their teammate and friend, Gerrin Hagen.
Hagen, 18, died after he was hit by a car last month in Hicksville while riding his skateboard home from school.
Teammates say the Long Beach lacrosse and hockey player was not just a stellar athlete, but the kind of friend everyone could depend on.
"Even though we're the same age I always looked up to him, he was always looking after me,” says teammate Aidan Cardl.
Even though they played hard against each other, the Bethpage and Long Beach teams both showed their support for Gerrin, his family and the Long Island hockey community by proudly wearing patches and stickers with his No. 2.
Varsity head coach Mike Medrano says Gerrin gave 100% to everything he did, and now his teammates are doing the same as they are back out on the ice, together -- playing the way Gerrin would want them to play.
"He was a leader on and off the ice, and you know he was a brother to all of these guys, including myself,” Medrano says.
Gerrin's teammates say there is nothing that Gerrin would want more than a county championship and that's their goal, every time they take to the ice.
"The team goes out there, especially for like the Hagen family, it's important that we go out there and we do what Gerrin would want us to do,” Cardl says.
The score was 3-2, Bethpage.