Local Player Bio - Kelly Herberger: Rocking the Juicy Fruit
Kelly Herberger - in the back, second from left. She might be little, but her tenacity on the ice makes her a giant. I had the honor of coaching Kelly once upon a time. It was refreshing to be able to work with someone who’s love for hockey started later in life – her love for hockey is fresh and her enthusiasm is contagious. She would listen and respond to constructive criticism which is rare when working with adults. She has come a long way since lacing up her skates for the first time and this is her story:
I grew up in Cleveland, Ohio where hockey was fairly popular. I didn’t have much interest in hockey, but I skated for fun in high school. I started out on figure skates, but my friends convinced me to buy hockey skates because they were “cooler.” I still have these circa 1980 skates. I went to Miami University of Ohio – now a name in college ice hockey – but back then, not so much. I went to a few games, mostly because I had a crush on one of the players. And I played about six seasons of broomball. I wanted to take a hockey class, but some guys told me it would be too tough for a girl, so I didn’t sign up. This is the biggest hockey-related regret of my life.
I moved to the DC area in 1986 and skated off and on for years – many times with a friend who had been an Olympic figure skater (and tried not very successfully to help improve my skating). About six years ago, I started skating regularly. After about a year, I got bored of going in circles and decided to take a chance on hockey. Keep in mind that I was 42 years old, an average skater, and fairly uncoordinated. I had never played a team sport or even competed in any sport at all! I took some clinics and started playing in the “mostly men’s” league at Fairfax Ice Arena. A few years ago, I also started playing in a women’s league. I’ve had terrific teammates, captains, and coaches – both men and women - who tirelessly advise me, pump me up, and forgive me for making the same mistakes over and over. I am so happy to see more young women start playing hockey, and I am in awe of their skill. Don’t be afraid to try ice hockey – it’s difficult, but incredibly fun and exhilarating! The name of my team at Ballston (Kettler) is Juicy Fruit – I know – totally embarrassing, but I didn’t vote for it. There are only 4 teams in the women’s league there, but that was the first time in my hockey career that I’d been on a championship team, so it was really fun for me. Both of our games were pretty exciting –the first game we won 2-1 in a shootout. I scored a goal in the second period and then they scored one. In the shootout we went through every person on our team except me (I begged to be last) – one of our defense women scored the winning goal right before me! In the “gold medal” game, we won 3-1 with a final empty net goal. In the women’s league, we switch up goalies every week, but we ended up with the same goalie for both of the final games – she did an unbelievable job! Of course, since we’re women, both teams who played in the final went out together for beers and burgers after the game.
Below is some information on how to get started playing women’s hockey, whether young in age or young at heart, there are plenty of opportunities in the DC metro area for women to compete against each other.
Kettler’s Adult Hockey Skating classes in our Learn to Skate Program will give beginners a solid foundation to build upon. Once you are confident as a hockey skater, you will be ready to join our Adult hockey classes to learn the fundamentals and you will be joining the Adult League in no time.
Rise & Shoot—Women’s Learn To Play This class was created in response to a group of hockey moms looking to increase their understanding of the game. The class was so successful we added more classes and the “hockey moms” are rapidly becoming hockey players. Prerequisite: Must have previous skating experience, Adult Hockey Skating classes recommended. Monday Mornings, 6:30am—7:45am Each session includes 6 weeks of classes plus a 6 pass practice card for public skate. Price $150 3/8/10—4/12/10 Registration now open
WOMEN’S ADULT LEAGUE Women’s League registration will open on March 1st. Games will be played on Monday nights Season will include 16 games plus playoffs $400
ADULT SKILLS & DRILLS Skills & Drills emphasizes learning and improving hockey skills at your own pace through the use of interactive drills, small area games, situational play and scrimmaging. Each session is designed for adult players, men and women, of all skill levels. Prerequisite: Adults with previous skating experience, Adult Hockey Skating classes recommended. Wednesday Evenings, 9:15pm—10:30pm Each session includes 6 weeks of classes plus a 6 pass practice card for public skate. Price $180 Sessions: 4/7/10—5/12/10 Registration opens 3/7 5/19/10—6/23/10 Registration opens 4/19
To learn more about hockey for young women in the area check out the Junior Women's Hockey League. It is an ice hockey league established in 2007 to provide opportunities for young females to develop into collegiate student-athletes. The JWHL has teams in both the US and in Canada and will be entering its third season of play in 2009.
Our goal is to be a major player and assist in the development of women's hockey. We are excited to help it move in a new direction. We believe the time is now to offer young women an opportunity to develop to peak athletic potential based on a sound philosophy for development of the elite and committed athlete.
Welcome to my blog!! My goals usually change with the seasons so be prepared for all types of random-ness. This month I am gearing up for Fall and Winter. I like to update this blog as much as possible but usually you see posts around the hockey season. Once and awhile I'll throw out some thoughts just for fun. Feel free to reach out to me at anytime if there is anything I can do for you. Thanks for listening. -Coach Dutton