Female Olympian plays with Chico State inline hockey team

Carly Marquiss scores a goal against Mexico in the 2013 Women’s Inline Hockey World Junior Championships in Huntington Beach. Photo courtesy of Carly Marquiss.

Race car driver Danica Patrick, Little League World Series champion pitcher Mo’ne Davis and Chico State’s own Carly Marquiss are breaking the norm of the male-dominated sports that they play.

Marquiss was already experiencing success at the international level before attending Chico State and becoming the first woman on the inline hockey team.

She has been on two women’s U.S. Olympic inline hockey teams that reached back-to-back championship games in 2012 and 2013.

With the Olympic inline hockey teams, she got the chance to play in two championship series against Canada. Marquiss currently plays as a defensemen for Chico State, but she played offense in both championships and was able to score goals in both series.

At the time of her international debut Marquiss was 15 years old and was the youngest player in both Olympic tournaments.

“It was a lot of fun. I was the youngest one at 15. The oldest girl was 25 and coincidentally was my roommate in 2012,” Marquiss said. “My favorite experience in my hockey career was that championship game against Canada. It was monumental even though I didn’t play that much. It was a big moment.”

Additionally, Carly’s brother Spenser made the U.S. men’s junior team and traveled to Bucaramanga, Colombia with Carly to compete in 2012 at the Inline Hockey World Championship.

Marquiss’ inline hockey career began at age 7 after watching her father and older brother play for years. She began playing competitively when she was 10.

“My older brother and dad were the main influence for me to start playing and keep playing. My brother has always been a really good player. Looking up to him and hearing people talk about him made me want to play,” Marquiss said.

She played for Willow Glen High School in San Jose and was the only female player on the team. During her time there, the team was in Division I and placed in the top two of its division consistently.

Marquiss has scored four goals this season for the Chico State’s inline hockey team, which currently has a 5-3 record.

Her longtime coach and mentor Brian Roh has been coaching Marquiss since 2010 on multiple club teams. Marquiss is a part-time player on the Silicon Valley Quakes, a team still coached by Roh.

“Carly plays harder than most of the guys she plays against. She never gives up and has proven herself to be one of the most successful female players in California. She never gives up or quits; she doesn’t know how to give up or quit,” Roh said. “Carly is a player that every coach wants. She would go 110 percent every time. Every time she would be on the rink, the guys on the team would see her and have to up their own game.”

Lars Gustafson can be reached at @[email protected] or @larsonsports on Twitter.