Breaking the Ice with Girls Hockey


Team Hug: Girls ice hockey scores a goal. Photo courtesy: hamdengirlshockey Instagram, December 18, 2021.

     Hockey season is finally here, and the girls are back on the ice. This sport does not get as much attention as other sports in high school; however, it is equally notable. The team is a co-op, made up of players from Milford, as well as Hamden, East Haven, New Haven, and Prospect.

     Senior Katharine Harrison says, “I like working with them because I’ve made a ton of friends from all over Connecticut that I probably never would have met otherwise. The only downside is that they all live more than 20 minutes away, so it can be difficult to make plans at times.”

     The distance between them does not stop them from being close as a team. Traveling around 30 minutes just for practice and games is all worth it for these players.

     “Our team is really tight-knit, so our bond makes it easy to communicate and support each other, as well as correcting mistakes as a team. We win and lose together, and we’ve got each other’s backs.” Harrison adds.

     According to the team, a typical practice consists of a 5–10-minute warmup, followed by a series of drills or conditioning. These drills include, but are not limited to, passing, skating, and taking shots at an open net or one with a goalie. They typically end with a scrimmage, doing their best to simulate a real game.

     Jaime Capozzi, a sophomore on the team states, “We’re usually working on drills and other things that we can use to our advantage in games – or we’ll be working on things we didn’t do so well with in a game – for example, positioning and pressuring the puck”.

     While doing all of these drills they have to make sure they stay balanced on their skates, and anyone who remembers their first few times ice skating can attest to the fact that it is not always a simple task. 

     With practice they are able to better themselves, Capozzi states, “Getting better motivates me. I’m always working towards being the best I can possibly be.”

     Win or lose, the coach and players continue to motivate each other. Coach Jessica Morgillo says, “I motivate the team by trying to build positive relationships with players. Creating a welcoming environment in the locker room. Embracing the team aspect. On the ice I try to be encouraging and make a big deal out of nice plays.” 

     Morgillo keeps a positive attitude, and even sends her team inspiring quotes before each game in preparation to get them in a motivated mindset. Her role as a coach allows her to bring her love for the game to her players.

     Morgillo relays that, “Hockey was a huge part of my life growing up and coaching keeps me connected to the sport. I love seeing the progression of how the team starts and how we finish the season with everything that goes in between.” 

     The season is not over yet for these girls, and they are hopeful for a successful season playing the sport they love. 

     Skating while playing hockey might not be appealing to all athletes, but for people like Harrison, “I’ve always felt happy when on the ice or even just in ice rinks. I feel a rush when skating.”