CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Led by junior Sarah Edney on the Preseason All-ECAC Team, Harvard women's hockey was selected third in the coaches' poll released by the league on Tuesday.
Named to the All-ECAC third team last season, Edney played in 32 games with three goals and 18 assists. An ECAC All-Rookie selection in 2011-12, Edney earned a plus/minus rating of +20 last season. She helped Canada's Development team to gold at the 2013 Meco Cup in Füssen, Germany and was selected to join Canada's National Women's Team for the Red-White Series in August.
"We are excited, said Maura Crowell, the Interim Head Coach, during the league's preseason media teleconference. "In the Olympic year, I think the playing field gets evened out across the board. We have a really good freshman class coming in and a lot of good returners … These guys are all extremely competitive, drive athletes who certainly don't see this as a different year in terms of what their goals are and what they are striving to do. For me, we are going to continue to do what we do and do it really well."
Harvard tallied 99 points in the preseason poll. Clarkson was picked to win with 117 (five first-place votes) and Cornell was selected second with 111 points. Harvard was followed by Quinnipiac (94) and St. Lawrence (78) to round out the top five.
The Crimson return 14 players to the 2013-14 roster, while Michelle Picard, Josephine Pucci and Lyndsey Fry will serve as members of the U.S. Olympic roster. Highlighting the returners are Edney and ECAC Hockey tournament MVP Emerance Maschmeyer.
Edney and the Crimson open the season on Oct. 25 against Quinnipiac. Game time is set for 7 p.m. at the Bright Hockey Center.
2013-14 Coaches' Preseason Poll:
1. Clarkson (7) 117
2. Cornell (5) 111
3. Harvard 99
4. Quinnipiac 94
5. St. Lawrence 78
6. Dartmouth 75
7. Princeton 56
8. Rensselaer 46
9. Colgate 43
10. Yale 37
11. Brown 26
12. Union 11
2013-14 Coaches' Preseason All-League Team
Erica Howe Clarkson Goaltender
Sarah Edney Harvard Defense
Erin Ambrose Clarkson Defense
Kelly Babstock Quinnipiac Forward
Jamie Lee Rattray Clarkson Forward
Jillian Saulnier Cornell Forward
On coaching style: I've been working with Coach Stone for three years and we see things pretty similarly, so we are going to continue to do a lot of the things that we do really well and certainly I will put my own stamp on it with some tweaks, too.
On goaltending: We return Emerance Maschmeyer, who was fantastic in her freshman year. We are very confident in her ability. We also brought in Brianna Laing, a freshman out of Nobles and Greenough, who as U18 experience as well, so we feel very confident about that tandem. Emerance has certainly proved herself as a starting goaltender and Bri is going to battle for it. We also have Molly Tissenbaum coming back as a sophomore, who will push both of them. It is a very competitive position that we feel good about.
On Marissa Gedman: She is (back to full health). She just had her one-year anniversary since her injury and she is feeling 100 percent. She is our captain this year, so she's back in a big way.
On keeping team together in Olympic year: I don't have to do a whole lot for that to happen. These guys are all extremely competitive, drive athletes who certainly don't see this as a different year in terms of what their goals are and what they are striving to do. For me, we are going to continue to do what we do and do it really well. We are going to keep as much consistency as possible. I've been here for three years. We hired Laura Bellamy, who just graduated from our program. She was our senior captain goaltender, so she's a familiar face. Hayley Moore is a familiar face in her second year here. In terms of staff, it is a lot of familiarity and the team is very driven from within, so we don't see it as an issue.