St. Patrick’s Day is for the wearin’ of the green, but for Getzville native Emily Pfalzer it’s still about the gold.
Pfalzer’s post-Olympic tour finally touched home base on Saturday when she did the ceremonial opening puck drop for the Buffalo Sabres/Chicago Blackhawks game at KeyBank Center.
A double puck drop day, Pfalzer also dropped the first puck prior to the Buffalo Beauts/Boston Pride at HarborCenter.
Since returning to the states with her Team USA teammates Pfalzer has been part of similar pregame ceremonies in other NHL rinks, like Tampa Bay and Florida. For Pfalzer, there’s nothing like being home.
“It’s amazing. I just got home last night. I’m so happy to come home. I’m a little surprised by the snow, well not surprised.” Pfalzer quipped. “I was in Florida so it’s a little bit of a change, but I’m so excited to be back home.”
Since returning home from South Korea where Team USA defeated Canada in a dramatic shootout to capture the gold Pfalzer and her teammates have made appearances on the Today Show, Jimmy Fallon, and Ellen. All pretty heady stuff to be sure, but Pfalzer hopes this win by Team USA will trigger a strong, lasting impact on girls hockey going forward.
“I hope it inspired young girls to play the sport we love,” she said. “To continue playing and to dream big.”
Cutting her hockey teeth playing for the Buffalo Bisons before moving on to Nichols School (Class 2011), Boston College, and eventually representing her country on the world stage, the 5-foot-3 Pfalzer has always carried herself with a never say quit attitude. Still her mindset, it’s also her advice to others.
“Just don’t let anyone tell you, you can’t do something,” said Pfalzer. “Just keep working hard and making sure you have fun.”
Pfalzer also served as captain of the Buffalo Beauts during the teams first two seasons, helping them win the Isobel Cup championship last season. But, like other National team girls, she stepped away from the NWHL this season. When asked if a return to the Beauts or NWHL, in general, was in her long-range plans Pfalzer said she didn’t know for sure what the future held.
“Honestly, right now I’m just enjoying the moment,” Pfalzer said. “I’m just taking it all in taking it a day a time.”
The immediate future, however, will include a swing by Nichols and a walk down memory lane.
“Nichols has been amazing to me,” said Pfalzer. “I’m so fortunate to have gone there, academically and athletically. I love Nichols and they’ve supported me all the way.”