The Online Beacon

The Student News Site of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts

The Student News Site of Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts

The Online Beacon

The Online Beacon

The Online Beacon

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Women’s Hockey Preview

Photo+of+Womens+Hockey+player+Carlen+Bertrand%2C+from+MCLA+Athletics.
Photo of Women’s Hockey player Carlen Bertrand, from MCLA Athletics.

Now that the leaves have fallen and the air has begun to chill, MCLA’s Women’s Hockey team is preparing for its first-ever season. Along with the return of the Men’s Hockey team, which is making a grand return after nearly twenty years of hiatus, MCLA is debuting a brand new team with Women’s Hockey. 

Luckily the team is in good hands with Head Coach Heath Isaacson, who has been busy at work preparing the team for their first season. Luckily this is Isaacson’s third time building a new team from the ground up, “This is the third program I have started from scratch, this is year nineteen for me coaching women’s hockey and out of the four schools I have been with, I have started three of those programs.” 

For the first year of the program, Isaacson outlined the team’s main goals as “Creating the culture and developing the program. It isn’t about just wins and loses in year one, but creating a cohesive unit that will continue on for five, ten, fifteen years.” This attitude of creating a sustainable and positive program is shared with the players, Isaacson explained: “It takes a special player to wanna come here and build a program so it’s like every kid I have on this team is committed… my players know that their legacy is going to be what this program is in 20 years.” 

This emphasis on legacy is carried on outside of the rink as well, with the creation of both the Men’s and Women’s Hockey teams, there has been a large focus on ensuring that these student-athletes demonstrate positive values like hard work and community membership both on and off the ice. When explaining his selection for players Issacson says “I can speak for myself, and Jeremiah Ketts (Men’s Ice Hockey Head Coach) did a lot of work on the men’s side, making sure to bring in quality people. That was first and foremost to us because when I talk about the culture, it’s not just words. You could take a chance on players who are super talented but may have some questionable characteristics and personality.”

A wide net was cast when searching for players to fill the roster, with players from “10 states here in the US and 3 Canadian providences” spread amongst the nineteen players. This geographic diversity allows the team to learn new skills from each other, as well as a unique bond among the players.

One of these players, Abby Pomajba 26’, from Ontario, Canada had this to say “It is an excellent group of girls, everyone gets along well, and we have been getting better and stronger every practice. Heath has been working us hard, but in a good way.” The sense of comradery felt between the members of the team is clear to see during their lift training session, the gym filled with the sound of laughter and comfortable banter shared between the athletes.  

Another player, Summer Bissaillion 26’, another new player from Ontario, spoke highly of her coach, “Heath just makes everything fun, and I am really excited for our upcoming game.” The team’s affection for their coach is clear, with the mention of his name being followed by affirmations from the team of his skill and kindness as a coach. 

MCLA Women’s hockey is still crafting its identity on campus, but the team’s dedication to crafting a long-lasting legacy and the deep bond shared by the team shows vast promise for the upcoming season.  The team has its first home game on Friday, November 3rd which you can catch at Peter W. Foote Vietnam Veterans Memorial Rink!

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Jaden Jackson, Staff Writer / Social Media Manager

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