After a year-long hiatus, Deerfield hockey fans can finally enjoy the long-awaited completion of the new athletic center. Ever since the October dedication of the Class of 1993 Hockey Rink, students have fully embraced it as a part of their Deerfield identity. Every Wednesday and Saturday, spectators crowd the bleachers to witness our Green and White warriors battling.
The Class of 1993 Hockey Rink was officially opened to the community on October 15th and operates on a daily nine-hour schedule including open skates from 9:00 AM-12:00 PM each weekday except Wednesday. The facility includes stunning features such as high quality ice, a puck shooting room floored with synthetic ice, as well as brand-new locker room spaces for the boys and girls varsity and junior varsity teams. According to Deerfield’s Associate Director of Athletics Jessica Lapanchinski, “This new hockey rink contains more welcoming spaces with new features such as lockers that are open instead of sectioned off, and students can also dress fully in the locker rooms before games and practices, making it much easier to navigate through the complex.”
The rink’s improvements have not only made it easier for players to navigate through the complex, it has also inspired a sense of honor among the players. As varsity girls hockey head coach Brooke Fernandez commented, “Our hockey programs are incredibly lucky to play in the new rink – there is a sense of pride in being part of Deerfield hockey, which has only increased with our beautiful home ice.” However, although Deerfield hockey has a new home, it is still valuable to pay tribute to the past. As boys hockey captain Mikey Holland ’19 shared, “There was more of a rigid sense of tradition in the old barn mainly because of its rich history, however with this new rink we can start our own traditions; this is the place where we will create our own history.”
Complementing the players’ heightened sense of purpose are the Student Planning Committee’s enhanced efforts to attract crowds. Specifically, this year we have seen an increase in themes (e.g. camouflage, black out, white out, and Hawaiian). As SPC Representative Bailey Cheetham ’19 explained, “This year there are certainly more themes than previous years because SPC believes that incorporating themes into our different game days gets more people involved and excited to come.” She also mentioned that, “themes make every game day a special day, giving both the players and fans energy to play and cheer respectively.”
The new athletic center is a hub of excellence and a celebration of sports at Deerfield. It is not merely a haven for athletes, but rather a hub for the entire Deerfield community that will showcase the glamour.