2018 Isobel Cup Champion Rebecca Russo is back with the Metropolitan Riveters and she’s more excited than ever. Russo is overjoyed to take the ice with her former team once again.
“The Riveters are my second family when it comes to hockey,” Russo said. “From being with them for three years and now four, I’m excited for this opportunity to play again, to meet new people, and win some hockey games.”
“We are proud to welcome Rebecca Russo back home with the Rivs this season,” said general manager Kate Whitman Annis. “Russo will have an immediate impact on the ice – we are looking to her speed to generate options in our offensive zone. Off the ice, Becca is a leader and works tirelessly to promote the game for girls and young women.
Russo is a three year veteran of the Riveters, playing in the National Women’s Hockey League from 2016 – 2019. In her rookie season she competed in the 2nd NWHL All-Star Game, winning the fastest skater competition. The forward scored 17 goals and 24 assists with the Riveters, including one playoff goal and two assists. To add to Russo’s impressive NWHL resume, she is also a 2018 Isobel Cup champion.
“I was thrilled to hear that Rebecca would like to return after spending the last season with her family. She adds even more skill and speed to our well balanced offense and will also bring experience which is always needed in close games and the playoffs. She is an Isobel Cup Champion and it is great to have her back in the Rivs uniform and in the league,” said Riveters head coach Ivo Mocek.N
Born in New York, but raised in Westport, Connecticut, Russo started playing ice hockey at three years old. “When I came along, my parents threw me on skates as well because I wanted to be just like my brother,” Russo said. She played for the Mid-Fairfield boys team until age 15, when her dad founded a Mid-Fairfield girls program to support and encourage girls to continue to play hockey at older ages.
Russo continued her hockey career during her high school years, attending Shattuck St. Mary’s school in Faribault, Minnesota. There, she had a vigorous 70 game schedule and won a national championship, while playing alongside some of the best hockey players in the country.
From Shattuck came a scholarship to Boston University. With her dorm a three minute walk to Fenway Park, the city life she wanted and an incredible hockey program, Russo knew BU was her home as soon as she stepped on campus. There, she won three hockey east championships in a row, scoring 37 goals and 38 assists.
When the NWHL was created during Russo’s junior year at BU, she knew her hockey career was not meant to end after college. “Playing with the Riveters those first three seasons was an incredible experience,” Russo said. “Having the opportunity to play with a founding four team, and the Riveters organization is just unbelievable.”
After three years with the Riveters, Russo decided to take a year off. She explained that she took the season off to be with her mother who was battling breast cancer. Being with her family and helping her mother navigate her fight against cancer proved to be the best option for Russo. “It was one of the greatest things I ever did and I wouldn’t change my decision for anything,” Russo said. “It’s been a great year for my mom as she just finished treatment. My family’s been spending a lot of time together, it’s just incredible. That’s really why I took last season off.”
Currently Russo works for Zelouf International, a fashion company in the Garment District of Manhattan. She loves to cook and be with her family in her free time – and she’s ecstatic to be back with the Riveters. “My dream to continue to play hockey is not over, and I’m grateful for Dani Rylan and Kate [Whitman Annis] for keeping this afloat,” Russo said. “I am ready to come back.”
Russo is dedicating this season to her mother, who has recovered from cancer. The Riveters family is eager to see her back on the ice, and Rebecca is delighted to work to bring the Isobel Cup back to New Jersey.
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