Hockey - Women's - News
AMBROZ, IRWIN TO CAPTAIN THE BULLDOGS IN 2011-12
Wednesday, September 7, 2011
The University of Minnesota Duluth women's hockey team has named four seniors to assume the captain roles for the 2011-12 season. Senior forwards Haley Irwin and Kacy Ambroz will both wear the "C's", while senior goaltenders Jennifer Harss and Lana Steck will both be assistant captains for the Bulldogs.
For a program that only expects great leadership, University of Minnesota Duluth head coach Shannon Miller expects nothing less of her 2011-12 class of captains.
"Our newly named captains will join a very distinct and honorable group of leaders who have helped shaped our program into a program of excellence," said Miller. "These new captains have embraced their role with honor and are very excited to continue the tradition and lead the way."
All four newly named captains have been on NCAA champion teams, and that fact is not lost on a squad whose home rink of AMSOIL Arena will host the 2012 NCAA Frozen Four. Irwin's blistering 60 points as a freshman helped guide the Bulldogs to a 2007-08 title in Duluth at the DECC. Irwin also has a Olympic gold medal in her back pocket, hardware she earned with Team Canada in the 2010 WInter Olympics in Vancouver, where the center learned first-hand about the pressure that can be heaped on a host team.
While Irwin and the other Olympians were gone during the 2009-10 season, heavily depleting not only UMD's roster but arguably most outside pressure, Ambroz, Harss and Steck loudly defied all odds to helped drive the Bulldogs to the program's fifth title. Harss stood between the pipes in the NCAA longest-ever championship game, a triple over-time thriller in Minneapolis, Minn. that capped off the program's decade of dominance.
Without question, UMD's new captains are prepared to lead the Bulldogs with the expectations that are levied on a team not only hosting the NCAA's Frozen Four, but the WCHA's Final Face-Off in the same month of March. Irwin, who as a freshman won both the NCAA title and the WCHA Final Face-Off at home, will be paramount to reminding the younger Bulldogs it can -- and has -- been done, and only in UMD's backyard.
The Bulldogs will host the Minnesota White Caps on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1 before kicking-off the season against Boston College at AMSOIL Arena on Oct. 8-9. Both games against BC are set for 3:07 p.m.
NOTES: Ambroz - - from New Prague, Minn. - - becomes only the second Minnesota native to captain the Bulldogs. Irwin, a product of Thunder Bay, is the first ever UMD captain from the southern Ontario city.
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