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Cardinal women reflect on winning season

Plattsburgh State Hockey players, left to right, Ali Vakos, Jenny Kistner, Bridget Balisy and Alyssa Parke.

Plattsburgh State Hockey players, left to right, Ali Vakos, Jenny Kistner, Bridget Balisy and Alyssa Parke.

— “To finally be in the national championship was spectacular,” Kistner said. “Having the NCAA crest on my jersey, having the 1,600 (fans in attendance) and all those kinds of things is what makes it spectacular.”

After the game, the team rented out UNO’s Chicago Grill to celebrate, a favorite spot to go after the game, with family, friends and fans who supported them throughout their season.

With the 2013-2014 season over, six seniors Vakos, Kistner, Allison Era, Chelsea VanGlahn, Sydney Aveson and Jordan Caldwell will be graduating and saying goodbye to competitive hockey.

“As much as it’s sad that everything you worked for is over, we couldn’t have ended on a better note,” Vakos said. “So, I’m OK with walking away knowing my last year we won a national championship.”

Vakos said she plans to work in the criminal justice field as a police officer, while Kistner said she plans to take a year off and then hopes to attend pharmacy school. If pharmacy school doesn’t pan out, she plans to attend graduate school to become a professor.

“To go in the locker room and know that I won’t be there next year with the team is sad, but I’ve dedicated my life, 18 years, to hockey,” Kistner said. “It’s kind of exciting to know that I have opportunities to devote my time to other things.”

As for sophomore Balisy and junior Parke, they said they hope the new recruits for next year’s team will work just as hard as the seniors leaving and help them achieve a fourth national title.

“I think we’ll have a hard working team,” Parke said. “We’re willing to do whatever it takes to win another title.”

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