An uninvited guest can really suck the life out of an event.
Such was the case for a nocturnal engagement at Graham Arena in Rochester Thursday night when a bat swooped in during the Century High School girls hockey game.
"I was like, 'Oh my god. Is this really happening?," said Ella Lentz, who plays defense for the team.
"Our whole team was watching it like little five-year-olds," added Kieran Witt.
The Century High School girls hockey team was playing Faribault when they saw the animal midair, which they thought was a bird at first.
The team, however, didn't bat their eyelashes. "I've never experienced something like that, and I've been playing goalie for two years," said goalie Sam Quarve.
The bat somehow got into the arena while a Zamboni was resurfacing the ice before the start of the third period. A garage was open to allow the Zamboni to enter and exit the arena.
"Everyone was freaking out. It was hilarious," said Lentz.
The bat put players and onlookers in a trance for more than 17 minutes. "He was just flying around, chilling."
"My mom was terrified. She put her hood up and stayed inside of it," said Witt.
Despite the distraction, the game went on. "What else can you do? It'd take too long [to try and get the bat out]," said Quarve.
Nearly everyone was distracted, but not Century's coach. According to some team members, he was not too happy they were watching the bat instead of the puck.
Meanwhile, some players got too close for comfort. "[The bat] did hit a few girls helmets on my team," said Quarve.
Even though Century lost the game, they gained a memory that will hang with them for a while.
Defensive player Lentz said it best. "It's like I'm never gonna forget this... did that just actually happen?"
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