By Brittney Marcum
Hockey N’ Heels 2017, hosted by Courtney Laughlin, was in my opinion, much improved from 2016. The previous year the Caps only used one of Kettler’s rinks; however, this year they utilized both, making the sessions much less rushed and giving us time to truly enjoy them.
Once again there were three on-ice sessions, as well as three off-ice. First up, our group (the red group) went to learn about face-offs from the legend Rod Langway. He explained to us how to hold the stick as well as why players get thrown out and replaced at the circle. We had so much fun going against each other and unleashing our inner Jay Beagle!!
Next on the agenda was a lesson in goalie skills from the man behind the beast, Coach Mitch Korn. Mitch explained to us the importance of the different pieces of goalie equipment and gave us directions on how to use them. We even got take a go at playing goalie for ourselves. We also spoke to him about how long goalies really have to react to those pucks flying at them from all angles and his responses were astonishing. He said that goalies watch video of players on other teams shooting so that they know what to expect come game time.
Our last on-ice activity was broom ball with Daniel Winnik and Nate Schmidt. Our half of the group was playing alongside Dan Winnik who explained we really needed to moonwalk while playing as to not fall over on our butts… If you must know I definitely fell on mine. Nate Schmidt was really getting into it which made it that much more enjoyable for everyone involved.Brett Connolly and Philipp Grubauer hosted similar groups on the other side of the ice.
The off-ice sessions included a chat with Chef Robert Wood (SuperFd and Eco Catering) who has an AWESOME cookbook coming out, including recipes from the Caps better halves. The food he cooked up for the evening was delicious[ the shrimp- pineapple skewers were my personal fave! We also got the opportunity to talk with Coach Trotz about his thoughts on how the team is doing and who their biggest competitor is. In case you were wondering he said it was the Blackhawks, and we all know how that went. The third off-ice session was a chat with Caps Alumni Craig Laughlin, Paul Mulvey, and Rod Langway. We discussed the expansion draft and the biggest changes they have seen in the game since they played.
Overall we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves and recommend anyone trying it at least one time.
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