The hockey world has quickly become obsessed with the two-way game and that was obvious at the first-ever National Women’s League entry draft in Boston.
Alex Carpenter, a stand-out with Boston College, went first overall to the New York Riveters. The 2014 Olympic silver medallist rang up serious points with the NCAA’s Eagles this year, leading the nation with 37 goals and 81 points in 37 games. But she’s also trusted as a penalty-killer and is solid in her own end. She won the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award as college player of the year for her troubles and comes from a big-time hockey family: her dad, Bobby Carpenter, had a long NHL career with teams such as Washington and New Jersey, while younger brother Robert ‘Bobo’ Carpenter was one of the top scorers in the United States League this season. He’s a Boston U. commit.
Following Carpenter was another forward, Hannah Brandt from the University of Minnesota. Brandt, selected by the Connecticut Whale, finished second in NCAA scoring with 34 goals and 74 points in 40 games and was a finalist for the Kazmaier award. She helped lead the Gophers to a national title over Harvard.
Emerance Mashmeyer, the Crimson goaltender in that Frozen Four final, was first netminder off the board, going to the Boston Pride seventh overall. Boston took high-scoring forward Kendall Coyne with their top pick, third overall.
The Buffalo Beauts had the fourth selection and took the first blueliner off the board in Wisconsin’s Courtney Burke, a 5-foot-9 Shattuck-St. Mary’s alumnus.
Twenty players were selected overall in the draft. Elsewhere in the league, teams and players are navigating free agency. Austrian national Janine Weber (Providence College) was the first signee, inking a deal with the Riveters.