College: Northeastern University
Prep/ High School: Loomis Chaffee School
Hometown: Franklin, MA
Melissa played for the Polar Bears from 2008 to 2013 and helped her team to a bronze medal finish at the 2011 National Championships. She is now in her senior year at Northeastern University, serving as an assistant captain.
How did the Polar Bears help to prepare you for the collegiate level of play?
Playing with the Polar Bears helped to prepare me for the collegiate level because not only was I playing alongside many of the top prep school players in the league, but I was also competing in the best tournaments for girls hockey. I was being pushed to compete harder and with the help of my coaches, I was given the resources needed to reach that next level and have the confidence to reach my fullest potential.
Can you talk about what the team environments were like when you played for the Bears?
Playing for the Polar Bears was probably one of my best experiences on a hockey team growing up. My team was also very close and we always had so much fun. Fitz knew when to be hard on us, but he also recognized how important it was for his team to truly enjoy the experience. One of the reasons why I think we were always a successful team was because we didn't have to worry about the coaches ruining the game for us, we were able to enjoy the game we loved and play for one another.
I really enjoyed the years I spent being coached by Fitz. He is a
very knowledgeable hockey coach who is very passionate about the sport. What I liked most about Fitz was that he cared so much about each and every one of his players and wanted what was best for his team, both on and off the ice. Yes, hockey was very important, but he also wanted to ensure that we excelled in school as well. Coaches like Fitz truly care about the girls on his team, and he will do his best to help each player get to the next level and have a positive collegiate hockey career.