In the past week Jerrod Mermis committed to attend the University of Denver next Fall. There are unconfirmed rumors that his younger brother, Dakota, may be in DU's pipeline as well. We found this story online from April 2007 about the Mermis family. Its a great read.
From: The Alton Telegraph
by Peter Hayes
April 16, 2007
These sorts of things are supposed to happen just once in a lifetime - if they happen at all. Winning a championship can elude even the best teams and athletes, no matter what sport. But for the Mermis family of Alton, Illinois once-in-a-lifetime is becoming routine.
Jarrod Mermis and his younger brother, Dakota, played key roles in helping their respective club hockey teams capture national championships recently. In fact, they did it on the same weekend - more than 300 miles apart.
“It’s definitely been a roller-coaster ride, to say the least - a good way,” said Jolene Mermis, the boys’ mother. “I think this could be a first.”
Indeed. But that’s not all - the national title was the second straight for Jarrod Mermis and the fourth consecutive for his team, the St. Louis Junior Blues, who captured their Junior B crown April 1 in Grand Rapids, Mich.
While Jarrod was helping his team stage a dramatic comeback en route to a national title, kid brother Dakota was in Buffalo, N.Y. helping his Affton Americans skate to the USA Hockey 12-and-under Tier III national championship.
And what about the boys’ dad, Bil Mermis? Even though he coaches Dakota’s Affton team, Bil Mermis was able to catch his older son’s title-game win.
“(Affton’s) championship game was Sunday and Jarrod’s team played Monday,” Bil Mermis said. “I was able to rent a car in Buffalo, go up and around through Canada and back to Grand Rapids. We got there before the third period their semifinal game.
“It was a phenomenal experience.”
Winning a tournament, a conference or a state championship is difficult enough - just ask any coach or player. Just winning games is difficult, period.
“We set some really high goals for our team this year,” said Bil Mermis, who is a fourth-grade social studies and math teacher at Forsythe School in Clayton as well as the head coach of the Alton High hockey club.
“It was just a question of whether we’d put the pieces together and be playing our best at the right time.”
The Americans defeated the Phoenix Firebirds 2-1 in the national championship game. Dakota Mermis scored the game’s first goal just 1:53 into the first period. In the semifinals, they defeated the San Jose Junior Sharks 4-2. Other wins were over Saratoga, N.Y., Indianapolis and Hatfield, Pa.
To advance to the tournament, Affton grabbed two wins in the Missouri Amateur Hockey playoffs and four more in the USA Hockey Central District qualifier. In all, the Americans won 12 consecutive games to win their national crown.
Meanwhile, back in Michigan, the Junior Blues actually came close to seeing their string of national titles end at three. Facing elimination after a second-round defeat, they found themselves needing to defeat Boston Junior Bruins by at least 10 goals to stay alive.
Final Score: Blues 11, Bruins 1.
Jarrod Mermis, a junior at Alton High School, scored a pair of goals in the Junior Blues’ dramatic victory. After the rout over Boston, they defeated Suffolk, Mass 6-2 to advance to the national championship showdown with the New Hampshire Monarchs. St. Louis skated to a 4-0 win on four first-period goals, including one by Mermis.
In the national tourney, Mermis had seven points on four goals and three assists.
Jarrod Mermis, an MVCHA All-Star and two-time Telegraph All-Area selection, had 25 goals and 31 assists for the Junior Blues and had three game-winning goals.
Any sibling rivalry at the Mermis home when it comes to hockey?
“Not overtly,” Bil Mermis said. “If any, it’s more of a positive thing. I think they’re happy for each other.
“Dakota went with me to watch Jarrod’s games and when the (Blues’) coach found out we were there, he had somebody bring Dakota down to the dressing room with his national championship medal. He laid the medal out for all the players to see and said, ‘Here’s one national championship medal - now you guys do out and win another one.’”