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Stoneman Douglas Hockey team hoists the Stanley Cup

The Stoneman Douglas Hockey team practices at the BB&T Center. (Sun-Sentinel)

Band of brothers, emerging out of tragedy - to win a championship. Less than two weeks after a gunman killed 17 of their friends, the Stoneman Douglas Hockey team won the state title.

Monday they held the biggest trophy in all of sports, over their heads.

High school players, on NHL ice - the Stoneman-Douglas hockey team were the special guests of the Panthers, practicing at the BB&T Center.

Panthers players and the organization have become quite close to these young men - this arena sits just 16 miles from their high school.

But still this was surprise, a dream come true for any player that's ever laced on skates and grabbed a stick. The actual Stanley Cup arrived - and the players passed it around.

"It was heavy," said MSD player Joey Zenobi.

"They let us play with it and drink out it, it was awesome," said team captain Matt Hauptman.

Quite the trophy, for the state champs that gave away their state championship medals. Their 17 players were motivated every game, by the 17 killed on Valentine's Day. So they knew what had to be done with those medals.

"We went and put those medals on every memorial, we dropped them, and they're still there," says Hauptman.

And they're not done honoring their fallen classmates. They head off to nationals at the end of the month.

"I hope we bring home even more hardware."

These 17 young men certainly deserve to keep it.

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