Madeline Palumbo Commits to Colgate University

Madeline Palumbo has committed to Colgate University and is set to be rostered for the 2023-2024 season. NZ scouts have noted Madeline for her high IQ and ability to think quickly. She has a talent for finding tape and setting up her teammates. 

Not unlike most Canadians, Madeline started playing on an outdoor rink:

“My earliest memories from hockey is skating on my rink that I had in my backyard when I was very little. Another memory I have is my first year of rep hockey in novice my team won bronze at provincials.”

Madeline tells us a bit about her recruiting process:

“My recruitment process was very exciting, I was talking to a few schools seriously, and a quite a few casually. I visited Princeton, schools in the Boston area, Colgate twice, UNH, and my hockey team went to St. Lawrence and Elmira.”

And her final decision to go to Colgate:

“Colgate has always been my first choice since I first started looking at going to school in the US. There were many factors which attracted me to Colgate like, their amazing coaching staff and coaching style. After doing a camp there and seeing how happy the girls were, how excited they were to be there, and how highly they talked about Colgate, I was even more confident it was the school for me. Also the level of education, schooling is very important to me and being able to attend Colgate will be an honor. I felt like Colgate was the right fit for me. The added bonus is that it is only 4 hours from my home, which means my family can come see me play often. Not to mention the arena is amazing.”

Having made her commitment for 2023, Madeline still has several seasons before going off to college. We asked what advantages she saw to an early commitment:

“I feel like committing early allows me to make a game plan and focus on getting better and ready for Colgate. I follow the team on Instagram and watch some of their games, which allows me to see what I need to work on and what I need to do to prepare. Knowing at an early age relieves some of the pressures and allows me to focus on my game and my schooling. Committing early was right for me because Colgate had everything I wanted in a school.”

We asked about adversity she has had to face:

“I think my toughest challenge in hockey was making the decision to leave my friends and change centres to help develop my skills. Deciding between playing with my friends or changing centres was hard but in the end I still maintain my friendships while taking [a new] opportunity.”

Many Canadians have the option to play USport in Canada or NCAA in the United States, Madeline tells us about her decision to play NCAA hockey:

“I feel like the NCAA route is a more competitive route and from the moment I heard it was an option, I think when I was 10 or 11, I knew it was the route I wanted to take. I love the way the NCAA takes their sports very seriously. I am passionate about hockey and I know that NCAA schools are too. I focused just on the NCAA route.”

With a few seasons left before pulling on a Raiders jersey, we asked Madeline how she plans to prepare for the next step:

“From September to April I play on my club team, practicing two to three times a week with a couple of games per week. I also lift 2 to 3 times a week during the regular season, depending on how busy I am. Once a week I am on the ice with my friend who is also committed to an NCAA team and we train with a former NHL hockey player. In the spring/summer season I will lift 4 times a week, play in some tournaments and try to get on the ice once or twice a week. I also feel it’s important to shut it down for a few weeks in the summer to give my body a rest and enjoy the summer. From an academic standpoint I am focusing on my studies and make sure my grades are high and I am taking the right courses.”

Thinking about life after hockey:

“There are a few things I am interested in taking, I love people and kids, so I have thought about teaching. This would also allow me to coach sports, specifically hockey. I would love to coach at the NCAA level. I also love architecture and I am fortunate that Colgate offers an Architecture minor. Hockey will always be apart of my life in some capacity.”

This season, Madeline lead her team to the Lower Lakes Female Hockey League Bantam AA Division Championship. She earned the highest grade on her team from the Championship weekend for her offensive contributions.