When Andrea Fischer broke her arm just before tryouts for the Switzerland Olympic hockey team, she thought about hanging up the skates. But that didn’t last very long. She couldn’t stay away from the rink. The injury was bad luck, but Fischer wasn’t letting it get her down.
“Everything happens for a reason,” she Fischer.
With her arm in a cast and a lot of time to think, Fischer realized she had to make a decision. Stay in Switzerland and start job hunting, or travel back to Canada and play hockey for the Tommies. She didn’t feel right spending that much time off the ice.
“I just felt like something was missing,” she said.
So she packed up her bags and booked her flight for Fredericton.
Fischer first played for the Tommies in 2009. Her coach in Switzlerand knew she wanted to go abroad to play, so he put her in contact with Tommies head coach, Peter Murphy. After playing two seasons at STU, Fischer decided to return to Switzerland to finish her degree.
Female hockey in Switzerland isn’t as popular as it is in Canada, and Fischer wanted to continue playing at a high level.
Now with international level experience, the 24 year old is back in the green and gold jersey.
“I really enjoy playing here,” said Fischer.
Fischer grew up in Bern, Switzerland. She started playing hockey when she was five, and hasn’t looked back since. Her dad always played hockey, and her two brothers played, so she figured she’d lace up the skates.
Since then, her passion for the game has grown.
“You need speed, you need strength, coordination, and a knowledge of the game,” she said. “And the skating – I just love to skate.”
In 2012, Fischer’s hard work and love of the game earned her a spot on the Swiss national team for the World Championship in Burlington, VT. Her team took home the bronze medal.
“I was so proud,” she said. “Even though I didn’t get to play a lot, it was a whole team effort.”
For most athletes, the ability to overcome adversity plays a major role in their career. This is something Fischer has learned very well over the past few seasons.
She was ecstatic to play for her country at the World Championship, but it wasn’t all about the hockey – Fischer had a more personal reason for playing. A family member passed away while she was at the tournament. Fischer decided the medal she won was in honor of her grandmother.
The Tommie are happy to be back on the ice in Fredericton. For her, St. Thomas is a home away from home. She’s learned a lot about herself since she first suited up for STU back in 2009, and made memories that will last a lifetime.
“It was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made,” she said.
Fischer hopes to make the Swiss national team for the World Championship in Sweden this April. But with playoffs around the corner, she’s just taking things one game at a time.
“You just have to give your best every shift,” she said.