Update: January 2014. Some of our alumnae are now playing with the Stamford Stampede, regularly or occasionally. It's a team of mixed experience and ability, and the competition is just as varied. We know how hard it is to organize and maintain a team like this, so we admire the women in charge and wish the whole team continued success. We don't know whether there is any room on the roster, but you can probably obtain contact information from Susan Hynes, Nora Hynes, Heather Parker, Megan Peterson or Caitlin McDonough.
The Stamford Spinnakers, an ice hockey program for girls and women in Stamford CT, came into being in 1998, shortly after the US Women's Team won gold in the Nagano Olympics. For the next ten years, girls (ages 7-18) from all over Fairfield County joined in a "Girls Spring Hockey" program hosted by the Spinnakers. This was instrumental in strengthening girls hockey clubs and teams in the public high schools of many nearby towns, but the schools of Stamford were not ready to host girls ice hockey in those years. So, from 1998 through 2010, the Stamford Spinnakers independently hosted an active and competitive team for local high school girls, many of whom went on to play intercollegiate and adult recreational hockey, some of whom are still playing and/or coaching hockey today.
Parents' enthusiasm for girls hockey seems to rise and fall like the tide, at least here in Stamford. A decade after Nagano, there were very few girls of elementary school ages participating in Stamford's local youth hockey association, and the impact was soon visible in the high school team's roster, which began to include girls from other parts of Fairfield County. We established teams at the 14U and 12U levels, but few Stamford girls signed up, and the rosters quickly filled with girls from Darien and Greenwich. (All wonderful girls, but all headed for the teams at Darien HS and Greenwich HS.) In 2009, all three Spinnakers teams were disbanded, because we were no longer serving Stamford. For the next two years, the Spinnakers hosted an adult team, primarily for graduate members, who returned to Stamford after college. That effort was challenged by job relocations, scheduling conflicts, fee shock (parents no longer paying!), and the difficulty of finding suitable opponents. So, the jerseys were laundered and stored away, in the hope that the local tide of enthusiasm for girls hockey at the youth hockey level someday rises again.
Stamford's public high schools eventually decided to host girls hockey, so many Stamford girls have the opportunity to practice and play on a combined Stamford-Westhill-Staples team. We wish them and that program good luck.
Ice hockey is a great sport for girls, and we would love to see it revived in Stamford.
We believe that has to begin where it did for most of the Spinnakers: With the support of their parents and with participation in...
Stamford Youth Hockey Association's HOUSE LEAGUE.
Play with girls and boys as your teammates and your opponents, at least until middle school.
This is still the best way for a girl to become a great hockey player!
Just a beginner? Try SYHA's Tiger Sharks Program.
After the Spinnakers' 2004 reunion game. Nine of them later formed the core of our Women's Team.
Visitors since 10/29/00
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