By John Orrell, Contributing Writer
Hudson – When Hudson High School’s Kayla Currin first laced up skates at age 3, few may have predicted that that would set the stage for a commitment to ice hockey that has had few boundaries along the way.
Following the lead of her two older hockey-playing brothers, Currin would not be held back and by virtue of her own tenacity and budding skills, began a progression that started with skating for the elite co-ed Minuteman Flames at age 5. From there, the foundation was in place for what would be a hugely successful sports career at the high school level and perhaps one day, beyond.
Now a junior, Currin competes for the Algonquin/Hudson girls’ varsity high school team, a co-op squad consisting of players from Marlborough, Hudson, Nashoba and Algonquin Regional high schools. While the team has struggled with wins and losses, it’s been no means a reflection on her contributions and dedication. Currin has been a Telegram & Gazette All Star for three consecutive years and has also been chosen as a Metrowest All Star. Her much-coveted goal of reaching the 100-point milestone occurred in a 5-0 whitewash of host Auburn High School Feb. 21. But it’s the team’s absence of post-season play that troubles her the most.
“I just really want to make playoffs every year. That’s the big goal,” acknowledged Currin. “Not reaching that makes the remaining games pointless and you’re just playing to play. It’s not the same. I love to be intense and step up to be a leader.”
“Hockey is very important to Kayla and she is always striving to be the best she can be to help the team win,” said head coach Jay Monfreda. “She brings intensity and commitment to the team and it shows on the ice, as well as off. You can see it in her face because she wears her emotions on her sleeve, that she is physically and emotionally drained after games. She takes losses hard and not making playoffs the last few years has frustrated her.”
Currin was also devoted to softball into her early high school days but ice hockey was always front and center. She also competed as a midfielder on the varsity lacrosse and field hockey teams. Despite her other sports’ time and commitment, Currin skates year-round with little rest, but she admits to not wanting to have it any other way.
Off the ice, she is soft-spoken, reserved and calm in nature. But as soon as she steps on the ice, the adrenaline takes over and the intensity and drive that are part of her DNA catch fire.
“Kayla is a quiet kid, respectful of her coaches and teammates,” said Monfreda. “Something certainly happens when she puts on that helmet for battle as she is very protective of her teammates on the ice. She has ice in her veins and never counts the team out and her ‘refuse to lose’ attitude has been contagious to all her teammates.”
On the night of her 100th career point, Currin, a left wing, was admittedly anxious to hit the mark and recalls the play that sealed it: “I knew I was two points away and I just went for it. I got the assist for my hundredth point. It was a three-on-one and I didn’t know at the time whether I assisted it or not so when I found out later I was really excited.”
Besides passing the 100 point plateau, Currin has recorded 61 goals which is second highest in school history. Her 103 total career points also trails only Andrea Fahey’s 116 and Elizabeth Holmes’109 for all-time team career point leader.
Currin sometimes has been compared to Shrewsbury High School scoring standout Delaney Couture who has a commanding lead in points in central Mass. Couture notched her 100th goal last month.
“We’ve played together on different teams so I know her well. On the ice we don’t like each other but off the ice we’re friends,” she said, smiling.
Currin is fully committed to continuing her hockey career after graduation. No one can doubt her will to succeed, least of all coach Monfreda.
“Kayla is a silent leader and leads by example,” he said. “She plays with intensity and always wants to be on the ice with the puck on her stick when the game is on the line. That desire to win has been infectious to the many.”