Friday, March 11, 2011

Quarry Cats.

This weekend is what the entire year has come down to. Three games. Just three. But they decide our fate. Do we go to California? Do we play in Nationals? Do we show people how good we are?

Only if we want to.

The one thing that transferring to Montclair has given me that Northeastern could never have given me was the chance to play on this team again. Above everything else that has happened this year, playing on the Quarry Cats has made me realize that transferring was the best decision I ever made. It made me realize how much I really love hockey, how big a part of my life it is, and how without the girls on my team, I wouldn't have had a social life or some of the closest friends I've ever made.

When I first came back and heard the news, I was excited but also nervous. I hadn't actually played on this team in two years. What would everyone think? Would I be that awkward person who was on the team but wasn't really part of the team?

As it turns out, that didn't happen at all. I arrived for my first dryland/practice, and fit right in. It was like I had never left.

The season progressed. We started out on a high note, winning all our games. It was great. We felt fantastic. Until, of course, we hit a sour note and lost all our momentum.

Then it was up and down until Polar Bear, where we really clicked as a team, both on and off the ice, despite being accused otherwise.

And now it's come down to this. As Herb Brooks said, great moments are born from great opportunity. That is definitely what we have here tonight. We have the opportunity to show everyone how good we are, and then to go to California and prove it again.

In the 1980 Olympics, no one thought the U.S. team would do what they did. But they did it. They beat the Soviets, and then beat Finland the day after to take home the gold. They did it. And so can we.

No one is expecting us to win this weekend; they say our chances of going to Nationals are slim at best. So let's prove them wrong. Let's leave everything on the ice this weekend. Let's put all our hearts into this game, and screw the haters. Let's come away from this weekend with no regrets, no thoughts of, "Oh, I should have done this instead of that."

And no matter what happens this weekend, I want my team to know that getting the chance to play one more year with them was possibly the greatest thing that ever happened to me. I'm thankful for that every day. I fucking love all of you. Without you guys, this year would not have been the same.

Districts: here we come.

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