It’s been a long and productive two weeks so far that Team USA has been together training. The pre-worlds camp that took place in Ann Arbor, Mich., started off with fitness testing and two-a-day on-ice sessions that tested us mentally and physically. The training camp also included two scrimmages against local boys’ teams and two pre-tournament games against Canada. All of the games were fast paced and competitive and allowed us to practice and implement skills and systems we had been learning and practicing throughout the week.
Once the team was selected, we refocused our minds on the world championship tournament and not so much the training camp any more. We had a few days to wrap things up in Michigan before we hit the road for the long trip overseas. As any trip over to Europe from the States is, our trip was long and tiresome. After hopping on the ice in the morning for a quick skate before travel, we boarded the plane in Detroit and took off for Amsterdam. I made sure to pack plenty of food for the trip because I love to eat. Our row was stocked with everything from oranges and apples to homemade peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to pretzels and cheese. With all of the eating, movie watching, homework and sleeping, the seven-hour flight to Amsterdam went smoothly. We finished our trip to Zurich with a short flight which most of the girls tried to catch an hour of sleep on, at this point in the day we were getting pretty exhausted.
The day we arrived, we took a bit to get settled in at the rink and the hotel, all the while trying to keep each other awake in order to get used to the new time zone and try to shake any of the jet lag! Practice that day was a bit of a struggle to say the least!
We’re now on day 4 here in Zurich and I think everyone is finally starting to sleep/eat normally. The tournament kicked off today with our first game against Slovakia. We were happy to claim a 5-0 victory. After some relaxation in the gorgeous Zurich sun this afternoon after our game, the team is ready to refocus on a new opponent tomorrow.
– Meghan Duggan