Meet Fanni Garát-Gasparics — PWHL data viz roundup

The IX: Hockey Friday with The Ice Garden, Feb. 16, 2024

Greetings from Simon Hopkins at The Ice Garden. Let’s talk about Fanni Garát-Gasparics. She was a training camp invite for PWHL Ottawa who cracked the line-up from the get-go and has stayed a consistent part of Ottawa’s fourth line. Gasparics is from Budapest, Hungary but has played hockey around the world. She played pro hockey in Russia as a young adult before moving back to Hungary. She also played in Sweden and the U.S. before arriving in Canada.

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Gasparics first hit the ice as a small child skating on public rinks in the winter, The Ice Garden learned in a January interview. When she was in grade school, she took an interest in ice hockey. There was a poster at her elementary school advertising a new children’s hockey program in Budapest, and her parents liked the idea. Gasparics was an energetic kid, and any opportunity to get her active was gladly taken by her parents. They told Gasparics she didn’t have to stick with it if she didn’t like it, but seven-year-old Gasparics was in love. “I never wanted to quit,” Gasparics told The Ice Garden.

Gasparics thrived despite being one of the only girls playing in her early years. As she came into her teenage years she, along with similarly aged girls, formed Hungary’s first U18 girls hockey team. The national hockey federation had taken notice of the interest in hockey by girls like Gasparics and had decided to assemble a team. “We have a generation from 1992-98 which is a big hockey generation,” Gasparics explained. She said that the group of girls who had grown up playing with boys was strong and ready to compete internationally.

They quickly rose through the ranks of international hockey, with Gasparics often leading the scoring. Now, Hungary’s women’s program is in the top division of hockey. “Based on our success, lots of girls have started to play hockey,” she said. “It’s totally different now than when I was a kid.”

Success with the national program and high-level hockey in Hungary led Gasparics to professional teams in Russia, where she played five seasons. Gasparics decided she wanted to study while continuing to play hockey, so she returned to Hungary for university. Gasparics trained as a chemical engineer while continuing to play pro hockey in her home country. After graduating with her degree, she returned to international leagues. “My biggest focus is on hockey,” she said, “but hockey is not forever.” She loves science and continues to tutor math and chemistry.

Gasparics is already a beloved member of Ottawa’s team and has embraced the community. “It’s great to be in a city where everyone is so supportive,” she said. Soon after arriving in Canada’s capital, Gasparics met the Hungarian ambassador and the rest of Ottawa’s Hungarian community, who she said have been supportive of her.

Gasparics’ husband is also a professional hockey player. He has visited her in Ottawa but plays for Worcester in the ECHL.

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Minnesota’s award for the best senior girls’ high school hockey goalie will be named after Jori Jones. Jones, once a semi-finalist for the award, died in a car accident last year at the age of 19. Her legacy is remembered by this award and outlined in the article.

Colgate’s Kaltounková suspended, ‘taking time away from team’ — USCHO

One of the NCAA’s top scorers is taking time away from her team folloing a suspension for an undisclosed reason. Nicole Haase has the breaking news.

Toronto’s Spooner adds to PWHL goal lead with hat trick in win over Boston — AP

Natalie Spooner is on fire! She’s been racking up goals for weeks now and added to that tally. Her hattrick performance earned her the first star of the game as she stays hot following the national break.

PWHL Viz Roundup – The Ice Garden

An Nguyen of The Ice Garden has the latest in PWHL data. Who’s hot and who’s not? These graphs will help you break it all down.

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Nipissing holding onto narrow lead and other OUA women’s hockey takeaways 49 Sports

Ontario’s Nipissing Lakers have fallen recently in university women’s hockey standings. The team that made it to the finals of Ontario’s playoffs last year are hanging onto their place in the table by a thin thread. Thomas Hewitt has that and other OUA headlines.

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Written by The Ice Garden