With winter’s icy grip enveloping Lawrence in a sort of arctic stranglehold, most Lawrentians prefer to keep as far away from the cold as possible and look eagerly to the faraway spring. The Lawrence University Women’s Hockey team, however, enjoys this time of year as it signals the beginning of their season.
As a club sport, the women’s hockey team is not yet an official varsity team. However, these women work with the same vigor as varsity athletes to learn the intricacies of the game and hone their skills.
“The fantastic thing about our program is that it provides women with the opportunity to learn a sport that is almost always associated with fights,” says Team Captain Angela Butler. “At the most basic level, it is a sport that requires an overwhelming amount of skill, aerobic endurance, speed, agility, and strategy.”
During practices these athletes work on fundamental skills including skating, stick handling, passing, and shooting. “It’s all about getting comfortable on the ice and not being afraid to fall on your face,” says Butler. “Not only that, it provides the opportunity to learn the sport in a fun and non-competitive environment.”
Overall, the women on the team work to improve their hockey skills as well as create a supportive, enthusiastic atmosphere for each individual player. Butler says “The team’s overall attitude during practice is great. The ladies on the team are always ready to pick each other up or cheer when a member of the team has fallen on the ice.”
As a whole, the women’s hockey team is excited about the plethora of new freshmen players. “Most of our new members this year are freshmen and all of the ladies in general bring a great amount of fresh energy to the team,” says Butler.
Building a strong foundation of young players will be essential to continuing the success of this Lawrence club team. Eventually, the club hopes to establish itself into a varsity women’s hockey team pending the completion of Lawrence’s own ice rink. “We are very excited that we might have some freshmen who will be able to continue joining and leading this program once we have graduated,” says Butler.
Meanwhile, the team looks forward to continuing to train and learn in preparation for the games and tournaments that will come later in the season. Look for the Lawrence University Women’s Hockey Team this term as they plan on establishing themselves as a foundation on this campus.