Students at FHN Start Curling Team


By Micheal Zull

It all started back in late February of 2018,  in a group message between some friends in the Speech and Debate Club. A simple message from junior Rejat Nepal had other students in the group chat messaging back agreeing, believing it was all a fun joke, according to sophomore Emma Rohrbach.

“We were all messaging and [Nepal] mentioned starting a curling team, and we laughed about it because we thought it was a joke,” Rohrbach said. “But he made a whole other group chat for curling, and it led from there.”

Once the team started building, two students and team creators, Nepal and senior Colin St. Aubin, went to their first curling meet, which was an intro class to help learn how to play, on March 17. The second intro class meet took place on March 31, which the rest of the team attended. Due to the lack of access to an ice rink to practice on, the team plays through exhibition games that don’t count towards their league scores at Creve Coeur Ice Arena as an alternative to practice. However, the exhibition games didn’t start until after their first season, leaving the team with no way to practice during their first league season. The team also has weekly meetings on Thursdays held in team sponsor Donna Malkmus’ room. During the meetings, the team goes over strategy and tactics. The team is helped with coaching from Malkmus and other adults at the ice arena.

“Practicing with adults helped us a lot because they’ve been doing it a long time,” Rohrbach said. “Besides, we’re kids and so they’re not afraid to tell us what to do. They give us lots of helpful hints.”

With no practice on the ice as a team, the time has come to their first official game of the league season which took place on April 7. The team won their first game and continued to win every one of their games, going undefeated with a record of 8-0. With exhibition games starting for the team, the team were forced off the ice on July 6 with no practice due to repairs to the ice, leaving them iceless until July 24. After finishing up their exhibition games, the team had their first championship on Aug. 10, which they won.

“I was kind of nervous at the beginning because we were initially competing just for fun and other teams seemed pretty serious,” Nepal said. “After the first game where we won 10-3, I felt more confident and hopeful that we would actually be good.”