“We’re excited to have our women’s residency program again here in Blaine,” said Pat Kelleher, USA Hockey Executive Director. “As many of your know, we were here in the run up to the 2010 Olympics, and we couldn’t be more excited to be here again with our friends at the Super Rink.”
Six members of the team are from Minnesota, including goalie Maddie Rooney, who grew up in Andover.
“I took skating lesson here at the Super Rink when I was just four years old,” said Rooney.
Rooney played hockey at Andover High School, and joined the school’s boys hockey team her senior year. She played in college for University of Minnesota Duluth. She won a gold medal at the 2018 Olympics. And now, in her spare time she is an assistant hockey coach at Centennial High School. She says, it’s fun to be training near home.
“I live ten minutes away. It’s crazy that we’re training here. Last time we were in Florida,” said Rooney.
As a part of the welcome ceremony, Blaine Mayor Tim Sanders was presented with a custom team jersey. He says the city is thrilled to have the team here.
“This is a huge honor for us to be able to host the Women’s National Team,” said Sanders. “WE know in Blaine that we are a sports recreation community and this is just the cherry on top of the ice cream.”
The Olympics begin in Beijing on Feb. 4.