Junior faces adversity in male-dominated sport

Beginning her ice hockey career at age 12, junior Amanda Kaminsky now plays for the Jr. Flyers and is thinking about a future of playing for Division III colleges.

While her future in hockey looks bright, Kaminsky holds onto the life lessons she has learned as a female player in a predominantly masculine sport.
According to Kaminsky, males players don’t have to “earn” the respect that they receive, like the female players do.
“During my first season, I went to a hockey camp and was bullied mercilessly, called names and treated like trash,” Kaminsky said. “That experience taught me to stay strong and, if I wanted to continue playing, I’d have to push myself and prove my worth.”
As she entered high school, Kaminsky began playing for Souderton’s Junior Varsity team and was met with backlash from other schools, including coaches. After one of her first games, she was asked by the other team’s coach: “why are you carrying your boyfriend’s equipment?”
“The whole experience was not only embarrassing for me but degrading,” Kaminsky said. “The following season, I worked hard and played for both the JV and Varsity teams.”
Kaminsky continued to work hard and advance her skills. Since she began playing later than many of her peers, she “worked twice as hard to be the best.”
This hard work did not go unnoticed as, according to teammate Eric Mawhinney, she is a “highly skilled and valued member of the team.”
“She’s a great goalie and helped to strengthen our defensive game,” captain Jacob Bealer said.
As Kaminsky’s skills progressed, she was accepted onto the Junior Flyers, a “men’s and women’s club ice hockey program run through IceLine in West Chester, PA.”
According to Kaminsky, being apart of the Junior Flyers has been “an outstanding experience” and has given her “many opportunities to meet college scouts and coaches.”
Kaminsky is looking to pursue a future in playing Division III hockey in college.
As stated on RecruitLook.com, college coaches are not permitted to converse with potential recruits privately until September 1 of their junior year of high school.
“This year, I have been in contact with many college coaches and have had many opportunities to begin to think about my future athletically as well as academically,” Kaminsky said.
Although her past experiences have been less than favorable, Kaminsky sees a bright future for herself in playing hockey. She “would love to thank” those who encouraged her along the way and “got her back” when the going got tough.
“The support from all my coaches and teammates throughout the years gave me the confidence to want to pursue a future in hockey and, without them, I may not have chosen to do so,” Kaminsky said.