UPDATED – WASHINGTON (CNS) — Boston College was paying close attention to women’s ice hockey at the Olympic Games, which ended with the team’s 3-2 shootout win against Canada to capture the gold medal Feb. 22.
That’s because five players on the team’s roster of 23 are from the Jesuit-run school — two are recent graduates and three are current students taking a leave of absence for the Pyeongchang Games.
The team’s gold medal is a first for them since 1998. It also happened on the 38th anniversary of the “Miracle on Ice” — the U.S. men’s ice hockey win at the 1980 Winter Olympics against the Soviet Union, the defending gold medalists.
“We’re extremely proud of our Boston College players who made the Olympic team,” said Katie Crowley, head coach of the Boston College women’s hockey team. “It’s an exciting time for them and their families. They’ve done a tremendous job working to get themselves prepared, and it’s an awesome achievement for them. We’re just really excited for them.”
The Olympics are not new to Crowley, who competed three times in the Winter Games with the U.S. team, starting in 1998 when women’s ice hockey became an Olympic event. She also played on the team in 2002 and 2006. In the three games, Team USA won the gold, silver and bronze, consecutively.
Boston College also had two graduates and a student play on the 2014 Olympic women’s hockey team.
The three Boston College students on Team USA are Cayla Barnes, Kali Flanagan and Megan Keller — all defensemen. The Boston College alums on the team are Emily Pfalzer, defenseman, and Haley Skarupa, forward.
All five players made their Olympic debut at the Pyeongchang Games.
In the early rounds of the 2018 ice hockey matchups, Team USA defeated Finland 3-1, the Russian athletes 5-0, then lost to Canada, 2-1. They also beat Finland 5-0 in the Feb. 18 semifinals.
In 2014, Team USA was defeated by Canada 3-2 in overtime, just missing the gold medal.
In Team USA’s game against Russian players, forward Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson set an Olympic record for the fastest back-to-back goals, scoring two goals 6 seconds apart. Her identical twin sister, Monique Lamoureux-Morando, is also on the team.
With all eyes on the team this year, Boston College is not the only Catholic school connected to it. Hannah Brandt, a forward, attended Catholic schools in Minnesota. She attended St. Odilia School in Shoreview for elementary school and graduated from Hill-Murray High School in Maplewood.
But Boston College has one more connection to add to its Olympic ice hockey cap: The captain of the men’s team, Brian Gionta, graduated from Boston College and was the school’s men’s hockey captain in 2001.
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