Photo provided by Emily Rickwood
Emily Rickwood is a native Canadian from Brantford, Ontario. Rickwood recently broke the record for the most career games played in University of New Hampshire (UNH) Women’s Ice Hockey history, passing former UNH captain Maddie Truax. She currently holds the record at 157 games played with a minimum of four games left in the 2022-2023 regular season. Prior to coming to New Hampshire, Rickwood was named to the 2018 Canada U18 squad that competed in Russia and Participated in National Women’s Development Team U22 Camp August 2018. She is a two-time Gold Medalist and Three-time silver medalist between here junior and senior high school years. She won the Esso Cup and a Gold Medal in her sophomore high school year. We caught up with Rickwood as she continues her final season of college hockey.
1. Growing up in Canada, hockey was the life for many kids. Women’s hockey has started to grow into a bigger thing in North America, what is one thing you want to continue to advocate for the growth of the game?
I love to see the growth that Women’s hockey has made over the last few years and I think the biggest contributor to that has been exposure. With social media now, using team platforms is a huge way to be able to display the great aspects of women’s hockey. If people can see the high level we compete at by posting game clips such as goals and big saves it will help people see and understand that women DO have a high skill level. Not only is it great to show the talent, but I also think capturing things off the ice such as videos of the athletes answering ‘this or that’ questions or pre-game rituals, will all draw people towards teams and the sport in general as they are able to connect with the players more and see who they are as people as well.
2. What is your favorite hockey memory?
My favorite hockey memory would have to be representing Canada at the U18 IIHF world championship tournament in Russia back in 2018. It was an unbelievable experience and I am so grateful I got to be a part of such a high end unique Tournament.
3. Being a D1 athlete is a shock to many people, what the biggest surprise so far through collegiate hockey?
I think the biggest shock was the time commitment and the importance in taking care of your body. I knew coming in that it was obviously going to be more work than playing for a junior team or prep school, but being a D1 athlete becomes your full time job. There is so much more than just practicing and playing games. There is rehab, team lifts, video sessions, meetings etc. Some days you’re at the rink for 6+ hours on top of being a full-time student. That was definitely an adjustment I had to make pretty quickly but overall it has made me such a better athlete and person both on and off the ice.
4. What is your favorite arena you have played at?
Facility wise, I would honestly say our home arena the Whittemore Centre. That was one of the main things that drew me towards UNH in the first place and I am so thankful to have such an amazing arena to practice and play in! However, in terms of atmosphere, I would have to say University of Minnesota. We just traveled there this year and we had over 1500 fans. They were into the game and cheering and it was so motivating and cool to see how many people came out to support both teams.
5. How do you juggle being an athlete and a student?
For me I really need to stay organized. I use my phone and/or a mini calendar book to write down due dates, meetings, appointments, game times, etc. So that way I have everything in front of me and can stay on top of whatever I have coming up. I also think it is super important to take time for yourself. Sundays are usually our day off so I always try to use that as a reset day as the week can be very overwhelming. I try to do laundry, get groceries, clean up around the house, and do any other chores that I might not have had time for during the week. This helps me to stay organized and limit stress and feeling overwhelmed.
6. What is your favorite hockey lingo to you?
I don’t have a specific saying or line that is my favorite, I just think it’s awesome that hockey players have almost like a ‘slang’ that only other hockey players understand.
7. As a former defense-man myself, scoring goals do not come often, what was it like when you scored your 1st goal in your sophomore season vs St. Lawrence?
It was incredible. My dad and grandparents were there to see it as well which was huge for me. I think that scoring your first goal is always a milestone everyone tries to hit as soon as they get to college, so finally getting there and scoring that first goal was so exciting, but also a relief in a way.
8. What are your life goals after New Hampshire?
My goal for after UNH as of right now is to hopefully continue my hockey career. I would love to play in the PHF somewhere close to home such as Toronto or Buffalo, but I am open to any team. I would like to keep playing for as long as I can and once that chapter closes, my next goal is to either coach a prep school or an NCAA hockey team or a become a PE teacher at a middle/high school back home.
Career Stats as of February 7th, 2023
Penalty minutes: 40
Game winning goals: 2
Keep update via her USCHO.com Profile: Here