2 years, 10 months, and 8 days after the last time I put on hockey gear….
The sad thing is that I’ve owned those Burninator jerseys for years and have never actually worn them on the ice before. When I skated for the Burninators in Vegas in 2009, I was wearing borrowed jerseys. So this was the first time that the mighty #80 got ice time. :)
I’ve had #80 for all of my custom jerseys since being on the Beloit Mad Cows in 1998. I was the college webadmin at the time; my friend Tom was the lead sysadmin and he wore jersey #22. Someday I’ll bribe the right person and get #80 in the NCWHL, too.
So, yeah, first time playing hockey in almost 3 years! It was awesome. Pickup was the best way to get back; everyone was chill and friendly. I even got to skate with Ralph, who photobombed Kira and I before the game:
I had no problem skating or stopping, other than wishing I could do crossovers more smoothly so I could launch correctly. ;) My puck handling was pretty bad but my passing was decently accurate (back me up on that, Ralph!). I didn’t have any shots on goal….nothing’s changed in 3 years. :)
I was able to play about 35 minutes which, frankly, was about 30 minutes longer than I’d anticipated. By the time I bowed out, I was getting back pain whenever I reached out for the puck, meaning I was bending forward at the waist instead of bending my knees. Ah well!
It’s been a couple of hours now (and some Tylenol) and I’ll be honest, I’m pretty sore. But I’m hoping it’s only muscle pain and that’s to be expected after, well, uh, a few years off. Assuming I don’t want to curl up in a ball and die tomorrow, I’ll try some more pickups and maybe skate at Ice Oasis on Mondays starting next month. The goal is to get back into Red in NCWHL for the September season. Fingers crossed that the back holds up over the week!