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New Trier (93) Katy Ratty in game action on Saturday. Loyola's girls plays New Trier's girls in the first game of a hockey double header at the Winnetka Ice Arena 12/8/12. New Trier won 3-0.|Photo for Pioneer Press~Judy Fi
Katy Ratty was at the United Center in March for the New Trier girls hockey team’s win in the state championship game over Lake Forest.
Ratty wasn’t on the ice, though. She watched from the stands.
For her first three years of high school, Ratty exclusively played for Chicago Mission, a AAA club in Woodridge. Although the senior also could have played for New Trier, she didn’t want to shortchange the Trevians.
“I didn’t think I would have been able to spend enough time with the team,” Ratty said. “I didn’t want to not to go practices and then show up for games. I would have felt bad. It would have been something hard to balance.
“It was a sacrifice I made.”
With a commitment to Dartmouth in place, Ratty decided to play for both teams this season. Entering this week, she’s played in six of 11 Metro league games for the Trevians, scoring two goals and passing out five assists. Ratty scored a goal in the team’s 4-1 win over Loyola on Dec. 4 at North Shore Ice Arena.
“It’s definitely different,” she said. “It’s fun to see the girls on the team in the classroom or in the hallways. With the Mission, I don’t really interact with those girls outside of the team. It’s fun knowing the girls you play with and having that common bond.”
New Trier coach Nelson Forsberg understands the choices the girls have to make sometimes, and he said the Trevians do their best to work around the circumstances.
“It gets tricky at times, but I think the girls enjoy playing both and enjoy playing for us,” he said. “They have fun with their high school team, and they get to try some different things and be leaders on the ice.
“It’s never been a really big issue, and I try to be fair about it with everybody.”
Even though Ratty wasn’t around for three seasons, Forsberg welcomed her with open arms. She’s one of six players splitting time between club and high school this season. Sophomore Lauren Michalec also plays for the Mission.
“We are so glad to have her,” Forsberg said of Ratty. “She’s a very strong player and moves so well on the ice. Her ice vision sets her apart, and she’s a very unselfish player. She can play anything out there. It’s great to have a versatile player like that on the team.”
With Ratty on the ice, the Trevians once again are a state-championship contender. She’s hoping to make another trip to the United Center, only this time as a player.
“That definitely would be a great opportunity,” she said. “That’s the goal at the end of the road. It’s still going to be a fun season, but we are inspired by playing for the state title.”
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