Interview with Taylor House — Must-click women’s hockey links
The IX: Hockey Friday with The Ice Garden, Nov. 10, 2023
TGIF because it means its another Hockey Friday! Michelle Jay from The Ice Garden (TIG) here this week.
I talked to Taylor House, a forward from Illinois who played for Quinnipiac in the NCAA then started her professional career with the Boston Pride in the PHF before signing with MoDo in the SDHL (Sweden) for the 2023-24 season! We chatted about life as an import player, living far away from home and more.
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TIG: It’s kind of a big transition, I’m sure, going from playing in North America to playing in Sweden. Have you ever lived that far abroad before?
Taylor House: No, the farthest was probably the East Coast from the Midwest.
TIG: So how’s that adjustment been off the ice?
TH: It definitely took a little time but I think having some other imports here, we all kind of banked on each other and made it better for each other. If we have hard days, we just go hang out. We all love talking and figuring out what works best for each other to get through the differences. But I think now that we’re almost halfway through, we’ve all pretty much adjusted very well.
TIG: Aneta Tejralová (former Boston Pride teammate) was on your team for a little bit. How was that?
TH: She literally just left! I loved it. I loved having a familiar face. Her last game was last weekend. It was kind of bittersweet. She scored in her last game, got the overtime winner.
When I was still kind of adjusting, it was nice to just have someone there. She knew some of the other people that I wasn’t as close with on the team too. So that was kind of a helping hand to just get into those groups on the team too.
TIG: Obviously, playing in North America, everyone speaks English. But this has to be the first time you’re on a team where English is not the primary language. So what’s that been like?
TH: Luckily for us, our coach is Canadian. So he speaks English all the time but he’s also fluent in Swedish because he’s lived here for 10 plus years. So if the Swedish players aren’t comfortable talking in English, they’ll talk to him in Swedish. If they have a question or something, he’ll just answer in English.
Every now and then, there’s times where a question gets asked in Swedish, and it gets answered in Swedish. We have no idea what they’re talking about and have to wait for someone to clear it up for us. But everyone’s been super accommodating, and they will go out of their way to tell us hey, so this is what we were asking, this is what we were saying.
If you’re on a line with two Swedes, they’ll speak English to you. It doesn’t feel like we’re being put in a box off to the side, everyone’s really helpful which is nice. I was kind of worried about that coming out here, that they would just talk Swedish next to us and not include us.
TIG: Have you picked up any Swedish?
TH: I’ve learned foods the most because of shopping and the basics. I can buy my groceries. I can say thank you, please, hi, bye, no. Duolingo wasn’t very helpful. It wasn’t productive to what I needed to learn here. I gave up on that pretty quick.
TIG: A lot of other North American players talk about how they get to travel over there when they have free time. Have you been doing anything like that in your off time?
TH: Honestly, since we started playing, this is our very first weekend off because of the international break. We’ve been busy basically every single weekend. I think a couple of us just want to take a break so we’re just kind of hanging out here. I’m gonna go up to a town like an hour north of here. We have a team car we get to use.
But Christmas we get a couple days and I know people are planning on doing stuff then. It’s definitely a lot easier to travel. It’s very easy, which is nice. It’s just kind of pulling the trigger to go.
TIG: Any places on your list?
TH: I really wanted to see Copenhagen especially because it is so close. It’s definitely the Christmas destination.
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If you’re interested in hearing more from Taylor, listen to her on TIG’s Around the Rink podcast.
Recently, the Victory Press spoke to another former PHF player who is currently playing in the SDHL as well — Autumn MacDougall.
Women’s hockey links of the week
The Rivalry Series is underway with one more game this month (Saturday). Catch up on how Game 1 went on Wednesday and prep with some previews! TIG’s preview has the rest of the schedule for the seven-game series between the US and Canada.
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