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Spartans have new owners, will stay put

The Southern Oregon Spartans hockey team won't be going anywhere after all.

The Tier II Junior A squad has been purchased by Dylan and Brie Martin, a recently married couple from out of the area, according to a release Thursday on the Spartans' website. The couple's ownership has been approved by the Western States Hockey League.

Dylan is from Evansville, Wisconsin, and Brie is from Albuquerque, New Mexico. Each has a hockey background, and they've had a desire to own their own team for a while, according to the website.

"Owning and operating a team has been a dream of ours for some time now," they said on the site. "We are blown away that our dream has now become a reality ... We could not be more excited to move to Medford. We know this community loves and supports this team, which was a big part of the draw for us. Community involvement and volunteer commitment is a pivotal element in our organization's model. It is very important to us to develop these kids on and off the ice, as hockey players and as people."

The Spartans were put up for sale by the former owners — Forest Sexton and Troy Irving — after last season was completed.

Sexton and Irving, both passionate hockey fans, purchased the team in 2010, three years after the franchise debuted as the Rogue Valley Wranglers.

Spartans to stay