DHS Girls Hockey Team is in for a Promising Season

The Dimond-West girls hockey team has a new coach this year. Hans Grundhauser is the new head coach for Dimond High School , and Melynda Belde is the new head coach for West High School. Girls hockey teams are composed of two schools in the Anchorage School District , so players from West and Dimond play together. South High School and Bartlett High School are one team, Chugiak High School and Eagle River High School are a team, and Service High Schoo l and East High School are a team. Since there are only four teams, they play against each other a lot. “I like playing with the West girls,” says Senior Sarah Cain. “You get to meet new people and experience new situations,” says Senior Anna Lau. There’s also a wider range of talent to draw from. In Fairbanks, the team draws players from three schools. “That’s why they’re so good,” says Lau. The new coaches seem to be doing a lot of good for the team too. “This has been the best year so far in terms of the level of fun,” says Cain, who has played hockey for Dimond-West all four years. Cain and Lau say the new coaches work well with the girls and cooperate well with each other. “We have a lot of positive things this year,” says Lau. “There’s a really good team dynamic this year,” says Cain. There have always been rules about attendance at practice for girls who play on competition hockey teams and school hockey teams. This year, however, more girls are opting to go to play comp hockey, whereas in the past they were coming to high school practice. While the coaches see this as a loss of some talented players, it’s not all bad. “Comp players are usually pretty serious, so this year our team is kind of mellow,” says Cain. Even with the loss of some major talent, the team still has the potential to do well. This year, the coach has been playing a wider variety of people. “Everyone on our team gets played, not just the first two lines, so they’re not tired all the time,” says Cain. Hockey seems to be going well for Dimond-West. It’s still early in the season, so it’s hard to tell where the team will end up, but the players are hopeful. “As individual players we’re average,” says Lau, “but as a team we’re good.”