Wednesday was the second practice for the Niagara County girls high school hockey team. And Coach Greg Grosskpof is impressed, mainly because this team never existed before. That's until a group of girls and their parents from Starpoint, Niagara Wheatfield and North Tonawanda high schools convinced their district to form a team.
“All the girls I play travel with always had a high school team, talked about what a great experience it was. It was something I wanted to be a part of,” said Julia Gerspach, a senior at Niagara-Wheatfield.
But, this team almost didn't happen. There was enough interest, but the cost of playing this season would be too high for some families. Team fees are $400 dollars a player.
“It's an expensive sport, a lot of the time it comes down to money,” said Grosskpof.
So, the team started fundraising, including a GoFundMe page. Among the dozens of donors, one came from John Buccigross. The ESPN Anchor gave $1,200.
— Bucci Mane (@Buccigross) October 30, 2018
“Anytime you get noticed by him, it's always something special,” added Grosskpof.
Donations from him and others throughout WNY mean these girls will be skating all season long. Their first game is set for November 26th.