Cal Marvin was among the World War II veterans that convinced Red Jarrett, the University of North Dakota athletic director, to start a hockey program. The first game was on Jan. 6, 1947, and the mainstays of the Sioux roster were a half-dozen players from Warroad and nearby Williams.

Cal was included in this group and it started a bond with North Dakota that permeated the Marvin family and the burg of Warroad for decades.

Back in 1997, Cal recalled this moment in Marvin history at North Dakota with his nephew Scotty:

"I went to Grand Forks to see him play for the Sioux ... got there too late. Scotty had been thrown out for fighting in warmups."

It was almost automatic that Marvins, if they had the talent to play Division I hockey, would wind up at North Dakota. Cal's son Mike was an exception to this, going to Brown for a year before coming back home.

Cal died in 2004. This was at the same time his granddaughter Gigi was entering her senior year at Warroad High and making the decision to accept a hockey scholarship at Minnesota.

Two years later, Gigi's brother cast his lot with St. Cloud State.

A Gopher ... a Husky? What's wrong with this generation of Marvins?

"North Dakota only had women's hockey for a couple of years at the time, although that wasn't the reason for my decision," Gigi said. "I liked everything about the Gophers program, and I liked the school. Minnesota was the place for me."

Gigi also pointed out she wasn't the first Marvin to play for the Gophers. "My cousin Willy was a goaltender for Doug Woog," she said.

Willy was the Gophers' third-team goalie in the late '90s, playing in 11 games in three seasons.

Gigi came to Minnesota as a star prep player. Now a senior, she has turned into a collegiate superstar with the Gophers. A minor injury caused her to miss this weekend's home series with Bemidji State, but Gigi remains a leading contender to win the Patty Kazmaier Award as the top player in Division I women's hockey.

This was also a weekend when Gigi's male counterparts with the Gophers were taking on St. Cloud State -- and thus kid brother Aaron. Where do the loyalties lie?

"I'm a Gopher, so I can't cheer against them, but I'm always going to want my brother to do well," Gigi said.

The Gophers wound up with a WCHA sweep -- a 5-1 domination on Friday night and an 8-6 survival on Saturday in St. Cloud. Aaron had the Huskies' goal Friday and two assists on Saturday.

Aaron first drew statewide attention as a Warroad sophomore in 2005 when he scored in the second overtime to give the Warriors a state Class 1A championship.

He wasn't the same recruiting prize as his sister, though. Minnesota showed no interest. North Dakota might have needed to see him for a full year in the USHL. Aaron went with St. Cloud State and joined the team as a true freshman last season.

Two years earlier, Gigi broke in with 16 goals and 30 assists in 41 games for the Gophers. There was considerably less room to be found for Aaron as a freshman in the male version of the WCHA.

He had three goals and 10 assists in 40 games for the Huskies as a freshman. This three-point weekend put him at eight goals and 13 assists in 24 games as a sophomore.

"I'm most proud of Aaron for the hard work that he's put into being a hockey player," Gigi said. "He's always been an amazing worker and a great teammate. And he's getting more points this season.

"His hands might not be the best part of Aaron's game, but he keeps getting better ...

"We played on the Pee Wee team together when I was a seventh-grader, but in the eighth grade I started playing in the girls' program. We also played hundreds of hours of outdoor hockey together.

"My mom told me it was 38 below in Warroad [last week]. All I could think of was how great the ice was for us to skate on when it was that cold."

Mike and Connie Marvin are the parents. Mike found a career after he returned from his one hockey season at Brown.

"He's had a buffalo ranch, I don't know, for 30 years," Aaron said.

Raising buffalo and not attending North Dakota might qualify this as a little different branch of the Marvin clan.

Patrick Reusse can be heard 5:30-9 a.m. weekdays on AM-1500 KSTP. •