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    August 12, 2022 Lynchburg, Va. RSS |

    Immersing prospective students and student-athletes in Liberty University’s culture is  a key component of the overnight, residential Liberty Hockey Summer Camps, which concluded in July with a camp for female players ages 18 and younger. Approximately 50 girls, including more than 30 teenagers, participated in the session led by Lady Flames ACHA Division I Head Coach Chris Lowes and DI Head Coach Rena Leone, with a few of their current and former players serving as counselors and clinicians.

    Skaters work on their shots from the high slot during last month’s final session of camps.

    “It was definitely a good opportunity to get a feel for what college is like and what it would be like to be a student on campus,” Lowes said. “Just to take in all of the amenities we have, the facilities, and cafeteria, it makes for a really good host site for a hockey camp, it was a really great week.”

    “The girls stayed on campus, over in Residential Commons II where they had to walk everywhere, so they also learned how big our campus is, and they got to experience a little bit of college life,” Leone added.

    Besides the LaHaye Ice Center, where all of the hockey sessions took place, campers got to use other Campus Recreation facilities, including the LaHaye Recreation & Fitness Center, where they played basketball and tackled the rock climbing wall, and the Liberty Mountain Intramural Complex, where they played beach volleyball.

    “Overall, the girls that attended camp felt really invested in and poured into, and they had really good ice sessions, lots of variety, lots of skill work, and some fun games, so it was a really good balance,” Lowes said.

    Lady Flames Division I defenseman Sally Hoerr, who graduated in May, prays with campers during an on-ice session.

    They were also saturated  with spiritual influence through devotions led by Liberty DIII men’s hockey Head Coach Josh Graham, who also serves as a Club Sports spiritual development coordinator, and interactions with their camp counselors.

    “Off the ice, we had some good conversations with each girl spiritually, so that was an encouragement to see young girls in the hockey community who can come and have a Christian experience,” former Lady Flames Division II player Sarah LaPorte said. “Hopefully word spreads, people get more interested and bring their friends, and Liberty can be a place where girls can develop (holistically).”

    Video edited by Kylee Lilge and Patrick Strawn/Club Sports Director of Video & Media