What started out as a thank you letter Mariella wrote to her mom back in December, has now become a way for Mariella to share her story, love and passion for hockey with the world.
Born in Innisfil, Ontario, Mariella has been playing hockey since the age of five years old. She’s also been rockin’ #8 on her jersey since her very first time on the ice. This past hockey season was Mariella’s first time playing Rep hockey, for the Clearview IceCats U13B team. Previously, Mariella represented her hometown, playing for the Innisfil Winterhawks. Mariella has also received the Avery Andrew Player of the Tournament at Sharkfest 2022, and the Deb Rowles Team Player Award.
Encouraged by her coach and parents to take her letter and passion for hockey further, Mariella decided to record herself reading her letter as to why she loves hockey, and to share it with others in hopes to inspire someone else to start playing the game or to remind someone what hockey is all about.
“My name is Marielle Malfara and this is why I love to play hockey.
I’ve thought of why I love to play hockey multiple times before. I’ve always wondered what my answer would be if someone asked me why I do. And surprisingly, no one ever has. I mean, I know the answer and it’s a very long and detailed one, so this running piece is going to be a bit long.
The reason I love to play hockey is because when I’m on ice, I get this feeling that I never really get anywhere else. I get the amazing feeling I’m overexcited. I’m really energetic because I just want to go on ice and play hockey, if that makes sense. I just love the whole idea of the game and I especially love the idea of a team.
I love the fact that I have people there for me on and off the ice. Teammates always stay by each other’s side, win or lose. At the end of the day, teammates are still there to pick you up when you fall, or even fight someone on the ice for you. I think the relationships you make through hockey are very important and special. I love my teammates and I’m really happy that I’ve met them this year.
I also love hockey, due to the fact that I feel no pressure whatsoever when I play. I mean, there is pressure from the other team and everything, since that’s how hockey is played. But I’m talking about the pressure you feel every day, the pressure you feel in school, the pressure you feel from your elders, the pressure of feeling you always have to do the right thing. Well, yeah, it doesn’t exist for me when I’m on ice, so it doesn’t matter to me what level rep I play, or even if I play rep. I don’t care if a professional hockey player is going to be my future job, because I know it’s not. I already know that hockey is only my hobby. It’s something I do for fun and fun alone. That’s why I love it.
I can be whoever I want in life and no one is going to get upset with me if I have an off day or if we lose. Unlike the real world, people train you in school to think failure is bad. So if you make a mistake in the real world, people think you have failed in the task you are trying to do, which causes you to get scared and feel like you did something wrong. But you making a mistake only creates a learning opportunity. That’s why I love hockey. When you make a mistake, you learn. People just say, what can we do? We will correct it next time we play. And that’s exactly what we do.
Hockey, to me is a stress reliever and a fun way for me to socialize and have fun. I don’t think I could imagine my life with up this amazing sport I’m so glad I asked to play when I was four. And I’m really happy that my parents have supported me through the past eight years. So thank you.
And that concludes why I love to play hockey.”
U13B Clearview IceCats
A Letter from Mariella’s coaches;
All quotes, images and other content obtained firsthand