Northern Star: Gabbie Hughes
Her work with Sophie's squad is getting national recognition as Hughes is a top five finalist for the 2022 Hockey Humanitarian Award.
DULUTH, Minn. – UMD’s Gabbie Hughes has a lot of goals.
The senior center is anchoring one of the top lines in all of women’s college hockey, alongside forwards Anna Klein and Elizabeth Giguere.
“I think just the way that us three play together, we have so much fun. We click so well and, and the passing that we do have and and share the puck with one, another is super special,” Hughes said.
Another goal for Hughes is to become an elementary special education teacher and she is currently working with a fifth-grade class at Hermantown.
“When I wake up in the morning sometimes I’m like, ‘oh I wish I could go back to bed’. And then I think, ‘oh my gosh. I get to go and hang out a bunch of fifth graders. I’m so excited,” said Hughes.
But her biggest goal is to bring awareness to an issue that hits close to home: mental health awareness for student-athletes. This season, Hughes partnered with Sophie’s Squad, a non profit organization named after Sophie Wieland, a 14-year-old youth hockey player who took her own life this past summer. Hughes is a close family friend and is dedicated to keeping Sophie’s name alive through the organization.
“To have the support that I have here at the rink from my teammates, and then the coaching staff is really special and you don’t come across that so often. So having them by my side and open to have those conversations and wanting to be better in that aspect of their coaching, and the family and the culture that we have here is unlike anything else,” said Hughes.
Her work with Sophie’s squad is getting national recognition as Hughes is a top five finalist for the 2022 Hockey Humanitarian Award.
“You don’t find division one athletes at the very top of their game, finding the time to also give so much to a different cause,” UMD head coach Maura Crowell said.
“It definitely is humbling and it makes me want to just keep doing it more and more and never lose sight of what the goal is and who I’m truly doing it for,” said Hughes.