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In Oak Lawn, policemen top firemen in charity hockey game

Matt Sauter brother Illinois state trooper James Sauter dropped first puck during an charity hockey team between Oak Lawn's fire

Matt Sauter, brother of Illinois state trooper James Sauter, dropped the first puck during an charity hockey team between Oak Lawn's fire and police departments. James Sauter was killed in 2013 during a stop on I-294. Proceeds from the game on Sunday, May 18, went toward the Illinois Chapter of Concerns Of Police Survivors. | Nick Swedberg/For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: June 23, 2014 1:33PM



A charity hockey match Sunday night in Oak Lawn ended in defeat for the village’s Fire Department, which was trounced 6-1 by the Police Department.

It was the 10th annual Police vs. Fire match-up, with proceeds from this year’s game going to the Illinois Chapter of Concerns of Police Survivors, an organization that helps families of officers killed in the line of duty.

The turnout at the Oak Lawn Park District’s ice arena was less than in previous years, when up to 600 people have filled the stands.

The smaller-than-usual crowd likely was because of the Blackhawks’ afternoon playoff game against the Kings, and because the weather was nicer than it has been, said Tom Cronin, a detective with Oak Lawn’s police department. Cronin served as the announcer during Sunday’s game.

Matt Sauter, brother of slain Illinois state trooper James Sauter, dropped the ceremonial first puck. James Sauter was killed during a stop on Interstate 294 in 2013.

Members of the Richards High School junior ROTC presented the colors.

Elizabeth Travnik, 15, and Alexandra Overland, 15, both of Oak Lawn, sang the national anthem before the game. Travnik is the daughter of Oak Lawn firefighter John Travnik, who played Sunday night.

A raffle and ticket sales at the door were expected to bring in as much as $3,000 for the charity.



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