For Nina Rodgers, hockey is not just her sport of choice. It’s her passion, her devotion, her way of life. If the Hopkins senior forward isn’t playing hockey, she’s watching it. Or thinking about it. Or preparing for it.
“I can barely last a day without hockey,” she said. “If I’m not playing, I’ll go out and play shinny in the back yard. I love watching hockey on TV or going to games. I love hockey, period.”
Her single-mindedness paid off last month, when she signed a national letter of intent to play for two-time defending national champion Minnesota. Staff writer Jim Paulsen talked to Rodgers about a life spent craving ice time.
Q: Congratulations on signing with the Gophers. That must feel pretty good.
A: It does. It’s a dream come true. It’s amazing to be set up for the future like that.
Q: When did they offer?
A: We’d been talking to them for awhile, but they offered last December. I was hoping for that, but I made a quick call to let people know and then I said yes.
Q: Is it a relief to finally make that verbal commitment official?
A: Yeah. It’s nice that part is out of the way now. But there’s still a lot of hard work to go. I’m not there yet.
Q: What about you impressed the Gophers’ staff?
A: I’d say they like my ability to score and being in the right position to score. I still have to work hard about not going into open space right away and getting into better position, but scoring has always come pretty naturally.
Q: How long have you been a hockey player?
A: I started when I was 5. I loved it right away.
|Kansas City - LP: B. Chen||1||FINAL|
|Cleveland - WP: C. Kluber||5|
|Cincinnati - WP: T. Cingrani||2||FINAL|
|Pittsburgh - LP: B. Cumpton||1|
|Chicago WSox - LP: J. Quintana||4||FINAL|
|Detroit - WP: M. Scherzer||7|
|St. Louis - LP: L. Lynn||1||FINAL|
|NY Mets - WP: B. Colon||4|
|Minnesota - WP: R. Nolasco||9||FINAL|
|Tampa Bay - LP: E. Bedard||7|
|Arizona - WP: M. Bolsinger||5||FINAL|
|Chicago Cubs - LP: E. Jackson||2|
|San Diego||4||Top 12th Inning|
|Baltimore - WP: B. Norris||11||FINAL|
|Toronto - LP: B. Cecil||4|
|NY Yankees - WP: C. Sabathia||14||FINAL|
|Boston - LP: F. Doubront||5|
|Oakland||10||Top 8th Inning|
|Philadelphia||0||Bottom 3rd Inning|
|LA Clippers||14||1st Qtr 3:06|
|Boston||2||1st OT 8:16|
|Colorado||1||2nd Prd 3:55|
|San Jose||0||1st Prd 8:01|