After a brief hiatus due to the pandemic, the US Collegiate Women’s Select team returns.
The collegiate team will open its three-game series against Canada later today in Calgary, Alta.
“We haven’t been able to do this for a few years, so it’s pretty awesome,” said Allison Coomey, head coach of the 2022 United States Collegiate Women’s Selection Team. “It’s always a great experience to compete against your best rival. I think for that purpose and for development, it’s a great overall opportunity.
The United States Collegiate Women’s Selection Team is generally referred to as the United States Women’s Under-22 Selection Team. But the team hasn’t played for the past two years due to the pandemic, so all college-eligible players have been able to make the team.
“We’re lucky in that environment to be able to do something like this in the summer where you’re not pulling players away from their varsity team during the important times of the season,” Coomey said. “It’s also less stress for the players because they leave [the tournament] and either go straight to school or have a week or two to prepare.
The team includes Murphy Abbeya University of Minnesota forward who was an Olympian and won a silver medal in the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing.
The team also includes a pair of University of Wisconsin teammates who were both on the 2021 United States Women’s National Team roster as defensemen. Nathalie Buchbinder and forward Britta Curl. Additionally, two members of the 2022 United States Women’s National Under-18 Team appear on the roster in Laila Edwardsa forward from Wisconsin who was named MVP of this tournament, and forward from Penn State Tessa Janecke.
The players were selected to represent the United States following their participation in the 2022 U.S. National Women’s Hockey Festival, which took place earlier this month in Buffalo, New York.
“We have good young players,” Coomey said. “We have players with a lot of experience at this level and higher. It’s an interesting group that way, but there’s a ton of talent.
The United States plays back-to-back games Wednesday and Thursday night before the final game of the series on Saturday. All games start at 9:30 p.m. ET in Calgary.
“It’s hard not to get up to face Canada,” Coomey said. “All of our players play with their players also on their college teams. I think it’s a lot of fun to play, but when you get on the ice you really want to beat them.
The series began in 1999 and has taken place 15 times. Most recently, the United States picked up two wins, including one in overtime, at the 2019 series in Lake Placid, New York. The United States also won in 2018, sweeping the series with three regulation-time wins when the teams played in Calgary. The US is 20-3-6-16-2 against Canada.
“It’s always a big deal to play against Canada and see where you are,” Coomey said. “With the development side, we haven’t had the opportunity to do that in recent years, so just to see where our promising players are… there’s a lot of importance in that area.”