WCHA 2015-16 Women’s Season Preview
Eight talented teams prepare to drop the puck on a new season
Coach: Jim Scanlan, 2nd season
Last season: 21-17-1, set school record for victories, finished in fifth place (13-14-1-1, 41 pts.) and was WCHA playoff runner-up
Key losses: Kristine Grenier had 18 points (3g-15a).
Key returnees: 21 players from last year’s team, which led the nation in shots blocked. Junior goalie Brittni Mowat, who was first-team All-WCHA last season and garnered first-team All-America honors, is back, as are as top defenders Ivana Bilic (fresh off a stint with Hockey Canada’s National Women’s Development Team), Alexis Joyce and Madison Hutchinson. The team’s top two scorers return in Stephanie Anderson (14g-10a=24pts), who participated this summer at USA Hockey’s Women’s National Festival, and Kaitlyn Tougas (13g-14a=27pts).
Top newcomers: Forwards Emily Bergland and Sylvia Marolt had high school success at Thief River Falls, Minn. and are among five freshmen who will try to crack the veteran lineup.
Outlook: Ranked No. 9 nationally in the preseason USCHO.com poll, expectations are high at Bemidji State. “There’s a lot of excitement around the program after the year we had last year,” Scanlan said. “But the ladies realize none of that means anything when the puck drops. You still have to get out there and play the game.”