Freshman Maddie Rolfes joins fellow US U-18 Women's National Teammates Baylee Wellhausen and Annie Pankowski in the Badgers' newest class. This group that has spent so much time playing together (Wellhausen and Rolfes were also at Shattuck together) bring with them tons of skill and high expectations.
Where Wellhausen is high energy and Pankowski is all calm serenity, Rolfes might be the middle-ground. She's been on campus all summer, shows an eagerness to get the season underway and had a constant, wide-eyed vigilance about what was happening around her. It's easy to see how that would translate on the ice and help the defenseman with seeing passing lanes and open teammates.
Rolfes has been limited in practice and she isn't expected to dress for the second straight weekend, though it seems to be more precaution than anything. She's still skating and practicing, so no details of an injury have been forthcoming.
On transitioning to college life:
This summer was really nice because a couple of us really got to know the upperclassmen kind of before we really got into the season and in to the intensity because we really don’t have that much time to just socialize and hang out, so this summer was really nice. And then as the season started the team showed their colors and how hard working they are and I think the freshmen are going to fit really well into that style of hard work and (their) work ethic and so so far the chemistry is great, our transition is going really well, the team is very accepting of us and they have kind of all taken us under their wing so that’s been really nice so far.
On the pressure of being such a highly-touted incoming class:
Yes, we’ve talked about it, just kind of how our class has very high expectations and we plan to fill the roles they’re setting for us and we’re ready. We’re not hesitant, we’re just ready to go prove that we’re here for a reason and ready to go work hard. Knowing each other has been really helpful because no one’s really out of the loop - we’re all on the same page, knowing what we need to get done. We just dove right in to friendship
Describe your style of play:
Defense is my strong suit. I tend to pride myself on my one-on-ones and just my defensive sense and then I also like to jump up in the play and if I get the chance I’d love to contribute on offense as well, but defense is my main priority and I intend to do well there.
Scout Baylee Wellhausen:
Baylee is extremely quick and her brain is on fire all the time. She is a quick thinker, a quick mover. She’s a very big playmaker. She’ll contribute well making big plays to the people who are going to finish and score. In the corner - she is small, but she has more heart than anyone, so she’ll battle and win that every time.
At Wisconsin, Frozen Four and National Championships are always the end game, but what are the other goals for the season?
The road to the Frozen Four - just being consistent, that’s going to be a big part, and just getting the chemistry down, so that when we do get to the Frozen Four everything is smooth and we’re ready. Just getting all the basics and the fundamentals down initially and the consistency will be big.