Led this season by co-captains Nate Hefner '19, Kyle Aanstoots '19, and Ray Fluet '20, Big Blue has its sights set on a conference win.
On March 4, at the Barnabus Health Hockey House (formerly known as the Prudential Center) in Newark, 38 of the best female high school ice hockey players from across the state squared off in the first annual New Jersey All-Star Game. On the ice were four—yes, four—Pingry players, all of whom were selected to compete: sophomores Allie Moss, Rylie Drozjock, and Lizzie Gilfillan, and senior captain Caroline Petrow-Cohen. (Allie and Caroline played on one team, while Rylie and Lizzie were first-time competitors on another.)
In composing the two All-Star Teams, the names of standout players from all 13 girls' varsity teams in New Jersey were submitted by high school coaches, a selection committee—which included Head Coach of the Girls' Varsity Ice Hockey Team, Kate Whitman Annis—reviewed their stats, and 40 girls were selected to participate in the game. Princeton Day School coach Lorna Cook—who also serves as assistant coach of the Metropolitan Riveters, a team within the National Women's Hockey League (NWHL)—launched the event this year.
Adding to the fun of playing in a famous arena, home of the New Jersey Devils and the NWHL Riveters, was the fact that, following the All-Star game, the Riveters had a game against the Buffalo Beauts. NWHL players mingled with the high school players throughout the game, reported Coach Whitman Annis, who helped to coach one of the two teams.
The game was a fitting end to a successful season for Big Blue, who finished 8-9. "We had an awesome year. The girls really worked well together and had a great time," said Coach Whitman Annis. "A highlight for me was seeing three of our athletes, who had never played hockey before, get so much stronger. This progress was led by sophomore goalie Emma Barrison, who was new to ice hockey and new to the net, but she ended the season having the fourth most saves in the state!"
Congratulations, Allie, Rylie, Lizzie, and Caroline!
**Note that, also part of the NWHL are the Connecticut Whale, for whom former Pingry hockey star Hanna Beattie '13 now plays.
Contact: Andrea Dawson, Senior Writer, firstname.lastname@example.org