Reloading for the future

The Gophers women’s hockey team proves the old adage about the rich getting richer: it’s just signed seven new players, including six Minnesotans, to a team that still hasn’t lost a game in recent memory.

Head coach Brad Frost inked high-scoring high school forward Dana Cameranisi (Blake/U.S. Under 18 Team), who torched enemy goaltenders for 73 points during her junior season and has been a varsity player since the age of 18. If the last name seems familiar, her brother Tony is a Minnesota-Duluth Bulldog.

Other high-scoring forwards include Kate Schipper (U.S. Under-18 Team), who helped Blake win a state title last year alongside current Gopher Milica McMillen; 5-8 Megan Wolfe (Eagan), a 70-point scorer last year who was just named to the U.S. Under-18 squad for the upcoming World Junior Championships; and Kate Flug (Roseville), who powered the Raiders to a State Tournament berth last spring.

Minnesota also signed defensemen Kelsey Cline (Bloomington Jefferson), a four-time All-South Suburban Conference selection, and Paige Haley (Red Wing), who’s powering the Wingers through her senior campaign after piling on 71 points as a junior and earning All-State Honorable Mention.

Frost also signed a formidable goaltender, 5-10 Sidney Peters, who hails from Illinois and has considerable international experience with Team USA.

In other words, the unbeaten, untied, top-ranked Gophers women simply reload and keep blazing away. Can’t beat that for coaching strategy!

Whistle-blowers named: USA Hockey has named a number of Minnesotans to officiate at upcoming International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) events. The IIHF Women’s World Championships in Ottawa will include referee Alicia Hanrahan (South St. Paul), who also worked the 2012 event.

The IIHF Women’s Under-18 World Championships in Finland next winter will include referee Jerilyn Glenn (South St. Paul) while Richfield’s Christine Langley will also be among the refs for the Women’s World Championships.

Heads up, don’t duck: Speaking of USA Hockey, it has been my privilege to be the voice of a number of episodes in the organization’s “Heads Up Don’t Duck” video series.

The safety initiative dates back to 1996 and is aimed at reducing spinal cord and other debilitating injuries. A new video has just been posted on www.usahockey.com and can be viewed along with many other topics in the series.