This season has been a bit of a work in progress thus far for the Gustavus Women’s Hockey team. The team currently holds an overall record of three wins, four losses, and three ties, with two wins, two losses, and two ties in MIAC conference play. The team’s roster consists of ten first-year players, and only three seniors, so it is fair to say that the team is a rather young one.
“We are having an up and down season. That’s to be expected with a younger team,” Head Coach Mike Carroll said.
A few of these “up” moments from the season includes a home win over MIAC conference rival St. Thomas, as well as another home conference win when Augsburg came to town. The home victory ended with a 6-4 Gustie victory. First-year Laine Fischer sealed the victory over the Tommies with an empty netter in the third period.
“It was satisfying knowing I had sealed the victory in a victory over our rival,” Fischer said. Fischer has enjoyed her time on the ice as a Gustie thus far. “I love playing here at Gustavus. I enjoy my teammates and the intensity and speed of the game at the college level,” Fischer said.
With so many first-years, there has definitely been an adjusting period to the game of hockey at the college level. A common theme of a faster pace, higher intensity, and better competition came up when discussing the transition from high school hockey.
“I have worked a lot harder in college than I ever did in any high school practices and because of that, I think it has helped me improve a lot and has helped me be prepared for games,” First-year Amanda DiNella said.
“I love playing here at Gustavus. I enjoy my teammates and the intensity and speed of the game at the college level.”
DiNella, like many of the other first-year players, is thankful for the upperclassmen of the team.
“The upperclassmen bring leadership to a very young team and keep us all focused and help us learn,” Fischer said. This leadership is essential to a team filled with as many young talented players that the Gustavus roster possesses.
Looking forward, the team’s hope is to get healthy. With winter break coming up, the team hopes to heal up and prepare for a strong finish.
“We are trying to get through the next two games with no more injuries, take a break and see how we can improve for the second half of the season. Right now, postseason play is the farthest thing from my mind,” Carroll said.
“We have many freshman that we think can be really good college players,” Carroll said.
“We are trying to get through the next two games with no more injuries, take a break and see how we can improve for the second half of the season. Right now, postseason play is the farthest thing from my mind.”
—Head Coach Carroll
The Gusties take the rink next tonight at 7:05 p.m. against the University of Wisconsin-River Falls comes to campus. Then the team has a month long hiatus from competition, to be followed by a trip to the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point on Jan. 8, 2016. Hopefully, the team will finish on the “up” portion of the “up and down season” that Carroll described.