After years of dominance by major Norwegian ice hockey clubs like Storhamar and not least the Stavanger Oilers, players for the small suburban club Frisk Asker could finally skate their way to victory earlier this week. That allowed them to don gold helmets and bask in the adulation of hometown fans.
First they beat Lillehammer in the quarter-finals, then the major club Vålerenga in the semi-final. That put them up against Storhamar Monday night and they didn’t disappoint. Frisk Asker won 4-2, with the same number of goals as in the earlier matches.
“We’ve had a Vålerenga complex,” team captain Anders Bastiansen told newspaper Aftenposten. “Not any longer.”
Led by 29-year-old coach Jan André Aasland, the youngest head coach in Norway’s premier hockey league, it was all about keeping the faith. “We’ve always had the faith,” he said. “It was great that we actually managed this.”