October 18, 2011

2011-12 Women's Ice Hockey Season Preview

PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The winds of change have swept through Meehan Auditorium as new head coach Amy Bourbeau takes the reigns of the program as just the third bench boss in Brown history. Bourbeau joins the Bears after spending the past 14 years as an assistant coach at Princeton University. The first-year coach also brought in two new assistants. Andy McPhee, who was the 2005, 2008 and 2010 NESCAC Coach of the year at Trinity College, and Lucy Schoebel, who was an assistant coach at Weslyan University in 2010-11 and a two-time Kazmaier Award nominee at Syracuse University.

Bourbeau can rely on the superb goaltending duo of junior Katie Jamieson (Waterloo, Ontario) and sophomore Aubree Moore (Bowie, Md.). Jamieson, who started every game her rookie year, led the Bears last season with 1,104:16 minutes between the pipes last season, playing in 21 games, starting 15. The third-year goaltender also had team highs in goals against average (3.26), save percentage (.907) and total saves (585). Moore was also strong in net last season, starting seven games and appearing in 11, totaling 575:30 minutes while making 367 saves to go along with a 4.59 goals against average and a .893 save percentage.
On offense, the Bears return their top-two point scorers from the 2010-11 season in juniors Laurie Jolin (Lachine, Montreal) and Alena Polenska (Kutna Hora, Czech Republic). Both forwards finished with 10 goals and seven assists each and tied for the team lead with 17 points. Sophomores Jessica Hoyle (Toronto, Ontario) and Vanessa Welten (Crysler, Ontario) each saw significant time last year, as Hoyle became a staple of the top line, just three games into the season. Welten anchored the middle of the second line, while seeing also playing three games onthe top line. Senior co-captain Katelyn Landry (Belmont, Mass.) provides stability and leadership on any line for the Bears. Senior Jacquie Pierri (Montclair, N.J.), junior Kelly Griffin (Apex, N.C.) and and sophomore Emilie Dolan (Montreal West, Quebec) will also be in the mix along with a talented group of newcomers in freshmen Shannon Flatley (Toronto, Ontario), Kaitlyn Keon (Toronto, Ontario), Brittany Moorehead (Clinton, N.Y.), Sarah Robson (Mississauga, Ontario), Lauren Vella (Staten Island, N.Y.), and Janice Yang (West Port, Conn.).

The defense will be anchored by senior co-captain Paige Pyett (Milestone, Saskatchewan), who racked up three assists last season. In 2010-11, then-sophomore Victoria Smith (Senneville, Quebec) rotated with three talented freshmen in Samantha Woodward (Lexington, Mass.), Jennifer Nedow (Brockville, Ontario) and Kelly Kittredge (Mahwah, N.J.). Woodward developed into a starter late into the season showing great offensive prowess, totaling 26 shots to go along with a goal and three assists. Nedow tied for the team lead with seven assists, while Kittredge tallied two goals on 11 shots. Pierri also has experience on defense. 

This season marks the 50th anniversary of Brown's George V. Meehan Auditorium which opened during the 1961-62 season. Brown will feature a special center-ice logo as well as a patch that will be sported on its home and away uniforms. Both the men's and women's team will host a doubleheader on December 3, to celebrate the anniversary. The women will take on Princeton while the men face Yale.

Brown opens its season on Saturday, October 22, at 1 p.m. at Meehan Auditorium against Sacred Heart. The Bears then take to the road with two early away games at Colgate and No. 3 Cornell.

It will be another tough ECAC slate and nonconference schedule this season as seven opponents have been ranked in the top-10 this year, while 11 more have received votes. 

2011-12 Captain's Preview: