Prep girls hockey preview: Moose Lake Area Rebels

The 2022 Rebels return all of their leading point-getters from a season ago, but low program numbers continue to be an issue.

Moose Lake Area's Gabby Gamst takes the puck from Hibbing-Chisholm's Maddie Rewertz for a scoring chance during the 2020 Section 7A quarterfinal in Hibbing. File / Pine Journal

Head coach: Reilly Fawcett

Assistant coaches: Nate Painovich, Michaela Belanger, and Savannah Gamst.

Returning starters: "We will be returning our top point leaders: Gabby Gamst, Sandra Ribich, Raechel Painovich and Hallie Klavu," Reilly Fawcett said.

New Faces: "We have a few girls joining the team as seventh graders: Jenna Jusczak and Autumn Painovich. We also gained Adeline Schmidt, who was a familiar face in the program growing up, but unfortunately was injured the past couple of years due to a snowboarding accident. We are excited to have these newcomers in our high school program, and we look forward to working with them and developing them," Fawcett said.

Team Strengths: "Our team is determined to be the hardest working team on the ice. We might not be as skilled as other teams, but we take pride in outworking our opponents," Fawcett said. "We also have a great group of girls and strong leadership throughout each grade level."


Biggest Challenge: "We are struggling for numbers right now, which is tough on any team that deals with low numbers in the program. We are currently sitting at 22 girls for JV and varsity combined, which means that many of our varsity girls will have to play at least a period of JV," Fawcett said. "This is concerning, because we don’t want our varsity girls getting hurt or running out of gas during the JV games, and then having that effect the varsity games. But this is something that our girls have been doing the past couple of years and are used to it."

Coach's assessment

"We are very excited about this year," Fawcett said. "We are excited to have fans back in the stands, and being able to play in front of our friends and families again. Our goal is to make it to the section final game and earn a trip to the state tournament. Our mentality that will lead us to this goal is to get better every single day and trust the process."

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