Athletic tape and Advil.
That’s what got Maggie Hanzel through her senior season.
The Rochester Lourdes senior defender looked no worse for the wear, despite playing her final year of high school hockey with two torn tendons in her right wrist.
Once doctors told Hanzel that her injury wouldn’t get worse if she played through it…
“We just taped it up, had Advil on hand and got used to playing through the pain,” the hard-nosed Boston University commit said. “A lot of the time I’d forget about it during the game. Practice was the most painful part, but I’d tape it up and be good to go.”
For her physical and mental toughness, her leadership shown on and off the ice, and for leading her team with 38 points from the blue line this season, Hanzel is the 2021 Post Bulletin All-Area Girls Hockey Player of the Year.
“Maggie always wants to get better and she always wants her teammate to get better,” said former Eagles defender Ali Ratzloff, a 2019 Lourdes grad who played two seasons of high school hockey with Hanzel. “She’s always brought energy and pushed her teammates and made the hard drills seem fun.
“She’s really competitive and always wants to win. She just has that mentality and gives 100 percent all the time.”
Since March 26, when the Eagles’ season came to a close after a Class A state tournament quarterfinal loss to Warroad, Hanzel has had her wrist in a cast. She’s still found a way to give 100 percent, whether that’s in the weight room or working on her skating.
She’s just hoping her injury is fully healed within the next six weeks so she can get back to her other favorite pastimes — stickhandling and shooting pucks. She wants to stay sharp before heading to Boston in July to meet her new teammates and get accustomed to the B.U. campus.
“She’s definitely one of the most well-rounded players I’ve ever played with,” said Hanzel’s teammate and classmate Abby Wick. “She makes everyone around her better. That was even more apparent this year than in past years. We had such a young squad coming up.
“Maggie’s such a natural leader and so incredibly skilled at leading by example. Whether it’s on the ice or training off the ice, her work ethic and compete level are unmatched. We all drew inspiration from that.”
As leaders of a young team with a short bench this season, Hanzel and Wick — who’ll play at Colby College in Maine, beginning this fall — had to be flexible. Both of them bounced between forward and defense, playing just about every position on the ice.
Hanzel finished her senior season with 20 goals and 38 points, the only time in her four-year varsity career that she had more goals than assists. She departs the Lourdes program as its second-leading all-time scorer, with 149 points, behind only 2020 graduate Emma Schmitz (176 points). Hanzel’s 90 assists are the most in program history.
More important than her points total, though, is one number: Three. That’s the number of times Hanzel helped the Eagles reach the state tournament, including this season.
“Going into the season, I knew it’d be different,” she said, “with COVID and how different this team was, with fewer players compared to some of the past teams I’d been on. Looking back, I don’t think the season could have gone any better. We really came together and I had a blast with all the girls. They all put in 100 percent.
“Getting to state was the perfect cap to my high school career, a great way to finish it.”
Hanzel will be one of a handful of Lourdes’ grads playing college hockey out East next fall, joining Emma Schmitz (Sacred Heart in Fairfield, Connecticut), Renee Saltness, who may play a fifth season at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut; and Allison Smith, a 2020 Lourdes grad who is currently a freshman at Union College in Schenectady, N.Y.
“Something that really sticks out to me a lot is Maggie’s composure,” Smith said. “Her patience. She’s super offensive, too, not something you see in a lot of defenders. She’s also someone her teammates can trust so much. We always knew what each other were going to do (when on the ice together) before we’d do it.
“She’s someone who, even though I was a year older, I always looked up to as a player I strived to be like on and off the ice. She’ll be a great asset to BU.”
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THE HANZEL FILE
Maggie Hanzel's year-by-year scoring during her Rochester Lourdes career: