SPORTS SUNDAY: Bismarck hockey phenom Britta Curl helps younger sister, Brenna, build her hockey future
Brenna Curl led the West in scoring this season, posting 15 goals and 30 points
Britta Curl has a decorated hockey career at the young age of 23. She's competed in three IIHF championships, earning a gold medal in 2018 and silver in 2021. At the collegiate level, she's won three national championships with the Wisconsin Badgers, while wearing the "C" on her chest this past season. All of this success stems from her high school hockey days with the Bismarck Blizzard.
"I think we had really successful years when I was in high school with the Blizzard," said Team USA forward, and Wisconsin Badgers captain, Britta Curl. "Getting coached by Tim Meyer and Annie Cashman. I think they gave me all the tools I needed to grow in confidence, become a goal scorer, and just get better. I really appreciate that program."
Britta is not the only "Curl" to blossom from Bismarck. Younger sister, Brenna, is sharing the same experiences: same head coach, same arena, same number on their jerseys, and you even see some similarity in their "cellies." Only now, Brenna was a part of the split from the co-op and captained the newly-minted Bismarck Century team to a state consolation championship this season. Brenna was able to step into a bigger role for this new Patriots team.
"I think I had to take on a little bit more of a leadership position as we were splitting because I was only one of, I think, about six returners," said Patriots junior captain Brenna Curl. "So I think it was actually a good opportunity for me, and for a lot of other girls, the split in the end."
In her junior season, she was the top scorer in the West, putting up 15 goals and 30 points. It seems to run in the genes for these sisters, molded by Bismarck hockey.
"I think our program does a really good job. We both actually grew up playing boys hockey, which I think also benefited us a lot. Just playing at that higher pace until we get high school," Brenna said. "I think we've had a lot of good opportunity just coming right out of Bismarck."
Those opportunities have made Britta one of the best players to come out of North Dakota, and Brenna, one of the best in the state right now.
"She is probably more skilled than I was at that age," Britta said. "And probably more than I will be. She's got great hands and a super good shot."
But, Brenna doesn't fully agree with Britta's assessment.
"I don't know if I would agree with her on that," laughed Brenna. "I think she's a pretty skilled player. But yeah, I mean, I don't know. We're just a little bit different, in some ways."
Separated by hundreds of miles, the distance between them hasn't broken the bond these two sisters have. With the guidance of Britta, Brenna hopes to make a name for herself at the next level.
"She's kind of paved the way for me. I kind of know the process a little bit better," said Brenna. "And, obviously, I want to be successful like her, but I think eventually I'm going to go on my own path."
"Honestly, I just hope she ends up somewhere where she has a great team, great coaches, and people to be around," said Britta. "And at the end of the day, when she's done with her career, she can like look back and be glad at what she did and, you know, move forward to the next part of her life."
Brenna said she is keeping her options open regarding the college recruitment process. If the opportunity to go to Wisconsin presented itself, she said she would take it.