The Select Blanket Community Service Project featured in Your Hub section of the Denver Post!
The Jeffco Action Center Food Drive was a huge success! The Golden Transcript did and article featuring our Food Drive as well as the players who volunteered at the Action Center. Click on article to the right and see what Nicole Hensley has to say!
Colorado Select Girls Hockey Association
By Matt Mackinder
They’re the first and only girls-only hockey association in the state of Colorado and one of the largest in all of the United States.
The Colorado Select Girls Hockey Association (CSGHA) has certainly made its mark in not only the mountains, but also on a national level. With numerous championships and a slew of players who have moved on to college hockey, the Select organization has had success, will perhaps have more this year and has its collective eyes on future positive endeavors.
Not bad for an association that is only entering its 11th season.
“When this organization was founded, it was on the premise that girls from Colorado could stay home and play quality hockey rather than going out to New England prep schools and essentially being raised by someone else on the East Coast,” said CSGHA director of hockey and 19U coach Marnie Hill. “We started out with just one team and this year we have 12 teams. Growth is something we’re proud of and we always seem to see an influx of girls coming to the program during Olympic years. I think that’s obviously due to the exposure hockey gets during that time to the mainstream public.”
Hill, who is starting her sixth season with the CSGHA, previously coached at Division I Providence College in Rhode Island. She was also a coach with the Rocky Mountain district camps and knew the area and knew the players that were coming from Colorado.
“It was great to interact with the kids, who were and still are ridiculously polite,” Hill said. “Maybe you don’t get that so much on the East Coast. It was good to have a background with the organization prior to my arrival and with all the growth and success, I’m happy and proud to be a part of it. We have a bunch of great coaches here who have been here a lot of years and they have put their mark on the organization.”
Playing college hockey is a goal and aspiration the majority of Select players come to the organization with and for a great amount of those players, putting on a college jersey, whether it’s Division I, Division III or club, comes to fruition.
“Of the 50 girls I’ve personally coached over the past five years, 48 have gone on to play collegiate hockey,” beamed Hill. “Those are pretty good numbers. These girls have the skill and desire and if they want to play college hockey, we can create opportunities for them.”
Off the ice, the Select group has numerous fundraising initiatives and that’s necessary due to the organization not having a sponsor. There are also two programs, Power Play Pals and Captain’s Council, that Hill said are crucial to helping mature and teach the girls about life and life in hockey.
“With Power Play Pals, we have our older teams link up with our younger teams and become big sisters to the younger girls and enjoy the camaraderie,” explained Hill. “It’s an avenue to learn the language of hockey, how to grow up in hockey and how to bridge the gap between the age groups.
“For our Captain’s Council, once a month the girls and I meet with a community leader and learn about leadership. Sometimes, girls get named a captain and aren’t sure what that means. I think this is a big help and one the girls have really taken a liking to.”
As for what the future holds in Colorado, Hill sees continued growth, more college commitments and a championship here and there won’t hurt at all.
“We’re definitely a finely-tuned machine,” Hill said. “That’s the best way I can describe it.”