Take away the game-winning goal she scored against Canada this summer, her appearance in a National Championship title game and an obviously bright future in the game, and Jincy Dunne would still not be your stereotypical high school student.
While some students use their free time between classes to catch up on the latest high school gossip, the O’Fallon, Mo., native is busy cramming away at her studies whenever possible.
She simply doesn’t have time to waste. Practicing with multiple hockey teams, being a three-sport athlete and making the daily 40-minute commute to and from the Fulton School in St. Albans, Mo., leaves little time for anything else.
“It gets stressful, but I know there are people who have it a lot worse,” Dunne says. “My mom really helps me a lot. So does my dad. If I am going through a real hard time, they will sit down and talk it through with me.”
Even at the young age of 15, Dunne is already a masterful multitasker. When she isn’t practicing with the U19 St. Louis Lady Blues or the boys’ St. Louis AAA Bantam Major team, she is studying in the car or is trying to learn about ionic bonds in her favorite class, chemistry.
Then, when she is not holding down the blue line, Dunne is lacing up the sneakers on the hardwood and calling out a play from the point.
“Sometimes I find time to sleep,” says Dunne, who was a member of the St. Louis Blues team that made it to the title game at last year’s USA Hockey Tier I 14 & Under National Championship in Amherst, N.Y.
“But no, I think the sacrifices you have to make are the [hardest] things. Whether it’s not turning in a paper because you have to get sleep because you have to take care of yourself or just certain little things you have to give up. But it will be worth it.”
Those sacrifices extended into the summer as Dunne joined the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team
in Blaine, Minn., for a three-game border battle with Canada. Even though she was the youngest player on the team, Dunne tied for the team lead with two goals. She also scored a shootout goal in a 5-4 loss during the rubber game of the series.
“Oh, it was a snipe, what else,” the 5-foot-6 defenseman laughs about her shootout goal that careened in off the post to send the shootout into a third round.
“I was really nervous at first. I went and tried to shoot right above the blocker. I had to start telling myself ‘you’re going to make it,’ and finally I did. It was exciting.”
It is Dunne’s humility and maturity that U.S. coach Jeff Kampersal quickly noticed in Minnesota.
“Jincy has remarkable poise for a young woman. I think she knows she is a pretty good player but she doesn’t know it,” says Kampersal, who is the head coach at Princeton University.
“Her best attribute is her humility, beyond the fact that she could be the next best player in our country. It’s pretty exciting times for USA Hockey with her coming along the way.”
It was a whirlwind of an experience for the rising U.S. star who hopes to work with the less fortunate or the elderly after her playing days are behind her.
“I don’t really think words can describe it. When I put on the jersey I got chills for the first time,” Dunne says.
Dunne hopes that one day she can sport the title of Olympian, whether it’s at the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia or the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
“I hope I get to wear the USA jersey sometime again,” she says.
“Hopefully sooner rather than later would be great. It’s just a matter of what I have to do to get there.”
Canyon Country, Calif.
The 2018 Olympic Winter Games are still a few years away, but Brooklynn Moore already has her sights set on making the U.S. Women’s Olympic Team.
Brooklynn started skating when she was only 2 years old, first with a synchronized skating club before making the smooth jump over to hockey two years later. And according to her mom Louise, she has never looked back.
Playing on both a girls’ and boys’ team in Southern California, Brooklynn has demonstrated the passion and perseverance to succeed with any team.
As much as she excels at the rink, she is every bit as accomplished in other facets of her life. She is a great big sister to her little brother and sister, and is involved in a number of philanthropic activities at her church and in the community.
“Brooklynn is always someone that you can ask for help and [she] does it without giving it a second thought,” her mom says.
First Liners Photos By Bruce Kluckhohn