CWHL Weekly: January 11th, 2012

Canadians Win Gold At Meco Cup

Canada won the gold medal at the 2013 Meco Cup in Fussen, Germany on Sunday.

Three members of the gold medal winning team play in the Canadian Women’s Hockey League–netminders Christina Kessler (Toronto) and Genevieve Lacasse (Boston) and Carolyne Prevost (Montreal).

Brampton goalie Florence Schelling tended the nets for Switzerland.

Mélodie Daoust scored twice; while Sarah Edney, Brianne Jenner, Brigette Lacquette, Prévost, Jamie Lee Rattray, and Laura Stacey had the other Canadian goals. Tatiana Burina scored twice for Russia, while Ekaterina Lebdeva had a single.

Finland won the bronze medal with 6-3 win over Germany.

Sweden finished fifth with a 4-3 overtime win over Switzerland.

Round robin play began on Thursday with two games as Canada skated to a 4-0 win over Switzerland.
Sarah Lefort scored twice; and Lacquette and Laura Fortino had singles for Canada.

Sweden edged Germany 3-2 in the other game.

On Friday Russia doubled Sweden 4-2; and Finland skated to a 3-1 win over Switzerland.

Round robin play concluded on Friday with Germany edging Russia 2-1; and Canada got past Finland 2-0.
Lefort and Prévost had the Canadian markers.

Clarkson Cup To Be Played March 20-23

On Friday it was announced that the Clarkson Cup will be played from March 20th-23rd at the Centennial Community Centre in Markham, ON.

This is the fifth year for the Cup; and the Montreal Stars are looking to win for the third straight year.

“We’re thrilled to bring all the excitement of the Clarkson Cup to Markham, which has always been a wonderful women’s hockey community,” CWHL commissioner Brenda Andress said. “We look forward to seeing fans from across the Greater Toronto Area, including the Markham community, fill the stands at Centennial Arena to take in the top female players from both sides of the border fight for the right to be called CWHL champions.”

“It’s a privilege to host the prestigious Clarkson Cup event in the City of Markham,” said Markham Mayor Frank Scarpitti. “Enjoying this national sporting competition will be exciting for residents and athletes, especially hockey players, boys and girls alike.

“Markham is well known for our outstanding sports programs and facilities, and for developing many Olympic and professional athletes,” Scarpitti said. “We thank the Canadian Women’s Hockey League for accepting our invitation and we welcome athletes, organizers and spectators from near and far. The tournament will be a boon for local residents and businesses. We’re committed to making it the best-ever Clarkson Cup. “

“Scotiabank is proud to support the Clarkson Cup Championship. As a long-time supporter of women’s hockey in Canada, we recognize that hockey also plays an important role in community life in this country,” said Eiji Doi, Scotiabank District Vice President for the Greater Toronto Area, East District. “Whether on the ice or on the bleachers, players and their families grow with and through the sport. Hockey is at the heart of our culture at Scotiabank, and we are thrilled to be partners with the CWHL and supporting something that signals to young girls that big dreams can come true with hard work, team effort and dedication.”

Duggan Named To List of 10 Best Female Players from New England

The New England Hockey Journal published their list of the 10 greatest female players from the New England area, and Boston Brave Meghan Duggan made the list.

Courtsey of Mike Zhe of the New England Hockey Journal

1. Julie Chu
Fairfield, Conn.
The 2007 winner of the Patty Kazmaier Award while playing at Harvard, Chu played forward on three U.S. Olympic teams, including the 2002 and 2010 squads that won silver medals. With 284 points over four seasons, she graduated from Harvard as the all-time scoring leader in women’s college hockey. She is currently an assistant coach at Union College.

2. Katie King Crowley
Salem, N.H.
One of the greatest scorers in college hockey history, King racked up 123 goals and 206 points during her career at Brown. She played on three U.S. Olympic teams, tying for the team scoring lead on the 1998 team that won gold in Nagano. Only two Americans have ever recorded more points in Olympic competition. She is now the head coach at Boston College.

3. Tara Mounsey
Concord, N.H.
After captaining the Concord High School boys team as a senior and winning New Hampshire Player of the Year honors, Mounsey took her game to bigger stages — first Brown University, where she was twice a finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award, and later the Olympics, where she led the U.S. team to a gold medal in Nagano in 1998 and won silver in Salt Lake City in 2002.

4. Meghan Duggan
Danvers, Mass.
From Cushing Academy, where she was named the school’s top female athlete three years in a row, to Wisconsin, where she played on three NCAA championship teams, to the Olympics, where she helped the U.S. win a silver medal in 2010, Duggan has been a productive star everywhere she’s played.

5. Courtney Kennedy
Woburn, Mass.
Kennedy spent a year at Colby College before transferring to Minnesota, where she led the Golden Gophers to the NCAA title in 2000 and was a two-time All-American, as well as a finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award. She played in two Olympics (2002 and ’06) and is currently an assistant coach at BC.

6. Gretchen Ulion
Marlboro, Conn.
The goal Ulion will be long be remembered for is the one that put the U.S. up 1-0 on Canada in the 1998 gold-medal game at Nagano — the first goal scored in a women’s hockey gold-medal game — but she had a bunch of others, especially at Dartmouth, where she graduated as that program’s leading scorer.

7. Sara DeCosta
Warwick, R.I.
The only goalie in our top 10, the Toll Gate High School product twice earned All-America honors at Providence and twice (2000, ’02) was named USA Hockey’s Player of the Year. She played in two Olympics, teaming with Sarah Tueting to give the Americans a gold medal-winning net tandem in 1998.

8. A.J. Mleczko
Nantucket, Mass.
Forward won the Patty Kazmaier Award during standout career at Harvard and played on two U.S. Olympic teams (1998, 2002), averaging a point a game.

9. Stephanie O’Sullivan
Dorchester, Mass.
One of 11 siblings, she left her biggest mark at Providence College, where she was named ECAC Rookie of the Year as a freshman, Player of the Year as a senior and led the Friars to four league championships. She still ranks No. 2 behind Cammi Granato on the school’s all-time goals (123) and points (256) list.

10. Julie Sasner
Durham, N.H.
Sasner left Harvard as the program’s all-time leading scorer (78 goals, 133 points), and was named to the first U.S. women’s national team in 1990. She’s gone on to a coaching career that included stops at Cornell and Wisconsin and the U.S. national and Olympic teams.
This article originally appeared in the January 2013 issue of the New England Hockey Journal

Elizabeth Stone House Teams with Boston Blades

The Boston Blades and the Elizabeth Stone House of Roxbury, MA are teaming up to raise money and bring awareness to domestic violence issues that affect families in the area.

The Elizabeth Stone House (ESH) is a family shelter and community support center for families who are survivors of domestic violence, substance abuse, mental health issues and homelessness.

As part of the fundraising the Blades and the Montreal Stars on January 13th at he Veterans Memorial Arena in Somerville, MA. Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door. The Boston Blades have generously agreed to donate a percentage of all ticket sales to the Elizabeth Stone House.

“We are thrilled to partner with The Boston Blades and be able to offer a fun event that can be enjoyed by local families,” said Nancy Owens Hess, Executive Director of The Elizabeth Stone House. “We are overwhelmed by their extreme generosity to donate a portion of their ticket sales to support our programs for families in need.”

“As a local women’s sports team, we have always supported our local communities and issues that face them,” said Boston Blades Manager and Head Coach, Digit Murphy. “We are proud to be able to support worthy organizations like the Elizabeth Stone House, and all that they do to help local families struggling with domestic violence and other issues.”

Blades Want To Help Grow Women’s Hockey in New England

The Boston Blades want to help grow women’s hockey in New England

Assistant Coach Mariel Lacina has coached the team since it’s inaugural season and is aware of her role in helping to make women’s hockey grow in New England. Lacina tended the nets for Dartmouth; and she has a special feeling for the area.

“New England has come to hold a special place in my heart. Hockey is everywhere and there is so much love for the sport. In a lot of ways it reminds me of Ontario – growing up dragging a hockey bag to practice at your local barn. Small towns and humble families, it really is a great place to be.”

“Ever since my recruiting trip to Hanover (New Hampshire), there’s something about the New England air that smells like home. Being able to help grow the sport in a hockey hotbed like Boston has been exciting for these past two and a half seasons. It’s great to see so many strong, quality girls programs here, as well as many girls playing on boys’ teams. I grew up playing boys hockey until I was 15, so there’s always a common understanding of the various triumphs and challenges you go through with that experience.”

Boston’s roster features many players from the area: Kacey Bellamy, Caitlin Cahow, Meghan Duggan, and Erika Lawler, to name a few. “Our players may not know it, but they are setting an example for thousands of girls in New England and to have them as role models are invaluable for the development of women’s sports. It’s such a good feeling to see the excitement kids have for the Blades and the growing recognition they have with the team.”

The Blades are still a new team; and Lacina acknowledges the hard work and the inroads that have been made. “We may be a long ways off of the following the Bruins have created, but we continue to lay the foundation for creating a very strong organization that resonates throughout the region. When you think back to the NHL’s starting days and the Original Six; guys used to sit around drinking coffee between periods just to keep from freezing.”

Lacina continued, “Yet, the dedication and love for the game that those men had, led to the prosperous and exciting league the NHL has turned into. I really believe that someday we’ll be playing in an NHL size venue for crowds of thousands. And as the future Blades walk down the tunnel onto the ice each day, they’ll walk past pictures of the team now and smile. Probably laughing at our hair styles or outdated equipment, but smiling in admiration for the foundation that we built. The sacrifices made because of our simple love of this sport.”

With information from the Boston Blades

Blades Implement Honorary Captain Program

The Boston Blades have implements the Honorary Captain program.

As part of the program teams can sign up to scrimmage during game intermissions with some players coming to the dressing room pre-game to listen to Head Coach Digit Murphy; and join the team on the ice for the pre-game.

There have been a number of teams to sign up for the program already including Walpole, Assabet, and the Shamrocks.

As an assistant coach for the Boston Blades, Mariel Lacina understands the importance of the community programs that the franchise has worked on this season. “The Blades have continued to really drive our community outreach this year. Our players and coaches are working with local teams in the New England area to share their hockey knowledge and generate excitement around our organization. It’s important to remember that we’re not just building a team, but an organization, and our fans play an incredibly important role in continuing our growth.”

Digit Murphy certainly likes to bring a sense of humour into the pregame talks. “As far as hearing me speak, I like to keep it light and fun so they enjoy it! I kid them that they are playing in the starting line up!” As the all-time winningest coach in Brown Bears history, she has brought a winning attitude to a Blades lineup that stands first overall in the CWHL standings.

The Blades team are proud to give back to the community.

“I think everyone that’s fallen in love with this game can look back at the many people that helped shape their life through hockey. To recognize that you could be doing that for the next generation is incredibly gratifying.” Lacina said.

With the fortieth anniversary of Title IX, it is crucial to remember the struggles of women’s sport in years past, and the importance today’s women have in shaping and improving the future. “As with many women’s sports, we are still fighting to grow to our potential, and I think everyone that’s gone through college now can look back at the sacrifices made by those before us, and be thankful for the opportunities we enjoyed because of them.” Lacina continued, “Many of the luxuries I enjoyed in college were made possible by pioneers like Digit Murphy and Josie Harper (Dartmouth’s former Director of Athletics) who fought for our rights. Now it’s our turn to continue carrying on that tradition and building the game for the generation after us.”

With information from the Boston Blades

The Games This Week

There were two games played in League action on Friday and Saturday.

Caroline Ouellette scored twice; and Emmanuelle Blais and Anne-Sophie Bettez added a single as the Montreal Stars shutout Toronto 4-0 on Saturday. Toronto gained a split with a 4-3 win on Sunday. Natalie Spooner led the way with two goals; while Rebecca Johnson and Tessa Bonohomme added singles. Megan Agosta-Marciano, Ouellette, and Dominic Thibault scored for Montreal.

The Leaders

Boston leads the standings with their 9-1-1 record and 19 points.
Agosta-Marciano leads all scorers with eight goals and 11 assists in 10 games played; while Lacasse is the top netminder (6-0-0-0, 1.44 GAA, 0.943 SAV%).

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