Wednesday, September 23, 2009

09/10 Women's Previews: #23 Hilary Knight


Vitals:

Position: Forward
Year in School: Junior (will redshirt this season)
Shoot Right
Height: 5-11
Hometown: Hanover, NH
Major: dominating NCAA Women’s Hockey
Previous Team: Connecticut Polar Bears in 06/07

08/09 Stats: 39 games, 45-38-83, +48, 24 PIM
07/08 Stats: 41 games, 20-18-38, +24, 28 PIM

09/10 Role: US Women’s Olympic Team

08/09 Recap: I could begin to talk about all the statistical categories she led the nation in last season, but instead I’ll sum it up this way: Hilary’s da Bomb! Patty Kaz finalist, WCHA POY, Frozen Four All-Tourney and an All-American, not bad for a sophomore. She wasn’t just the best forward in Cardinal and White or the WCHA but in all of the NCAA’s last season. Culvers briefly considered renamed the Culvers 5 goal free for all, to the “Hilary Knight 5 goal free for all sponsored by Culvers” after she lit up Quinnipiac for five all by herself early in the season.

09/10 Thoughts: The only player leaving bigger shoes to fill this season for the Badgers is Jessie Vetter after her graduation from UW, but Hilary is a close second. Teammates will have to step up while she is gone chasing Olympic gold, and I think there are some good candidates to briefly take her spot as the scoring leader until she returns next season. She should be a force for Team USA as she takes her incredible game to the world stage and they bring back the gold.

I’m going to miss Hilary this season, she is the reason why I started attending Women’s game regularly last season. At the end of 07/08, I went to one Women’s game in the WCHA playoffs against Mankato. Hilary put the sickest moves on several land cows before scoring a highlight reel goal, and she never stopped last season. Easily my favorite player, Men’s or Women’s teams.

GL to her, all the Badgers and their teammates on Team USA.

Plan to come to the Kohl Center on Tuesday January 5th, when Hilary (and 7 other current and former Badgers) will be in town as Team USA squares off against the Badger Women.

Prediction: Olympic Gold & her face on a Wheaties Box