Hickel preps for hockey homecoming

Published: Jan. 2, 2018 at 7:25 PM AKST
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This week, Anchorage's Zoe Hickel and the Kunlan Red Star are visiting Anchorage. The Chinese hockey team is a part of the Canadian Women’s Hockey League.

The trip includes sightseeing, hockey, and a meal Thursday with Governor Bill Walker.

Not only is it a chance for the foreign players to experience Alaska, it's also a chance for the forward to play in front of a home crowd.

"To be honest for once in my life Alaska is a crossing point between China the U-S and Canada,” said Hickel. “We had this opportunity to touch base here before we start our second half of the season, and a little tune up here for the girls."

Since Hickel was a teenager she spent most of her hockey career away from Alaska.

The 25-year-olds played Div. I hockey at the University of Minnesota Duluth, and won a World Championship with the U.S. Women’s National Team in 2015 and 2016.

After college she spent a season in the National Women’s Hockey League before heading to China to play for the Red Star in the CWHL.

Hickel is also an ambassador for the sport helping Chinese prepare for their world championships, and the 2022 Olympics.

The Red Star will be facing off Friday in a scrimmage against local pro and college players at O’Malley Ice Rink at 1:00 PM