The former Caps players began the session fielding questions from students in the school’s gymnasium before directing a floor hockey clinic with 200 fifth- through seventh-grade students. Hangsleben and May instructed the students on basic hockey skills such as stick-handling, passing and shooting. The students were then called on to try out the skills in front of their peers. Two students even volunteered to dress as goalies, learning how to put on the equipment and how to handle the goalie stick.
The students then played alongside the pair of players in a friendly scrimmage. Hangsleben played with the boys and defeated May and the girls’ team 2-1. The players then challenged the Mary Ellen Henderson teachers and staff to a scrimmage, which ended in a 0-0 tie. The hour-long program concluded with the Capitals donating a set of hockey equipment to the elementary school.
“The level of excitement today was unbelievable,” said Hangsleben. “This is completely different from when I was in high school, it’s great. There was a lot of enthusiasm today with the kids and even with the teachers.”
“As far as I know the girls won the scrimmage; last goal wins,” said May. “Both teams were giving a lot of effort out here today. It was a lot of fun.”
All students who participated in the session received autographs from Hangsleben and May, Caps squishy pucks and Hockey 101 booklets. The school also received an official Capitals Hockey School banner to display in their school year-round.
This was the 17th Capitals Hockey School visit this season. The Capitals host two Hockey School visits each month between September and May and donate street hockey equipment to each participating school. This is the fifth-consecutive year the Capitals have conducted their Hockey School program. The Caps have hosted more than 50 clinics and reached more than 7,500 students in the past four years. Hockey School is a free program, designed to be both instructional and interactive, with the goal of exposing students to floor hockey while teaching proper hockey technique. Each school will receive an official Capitals Hockey School banner to display in their school year-round.