Twelve women have signed National Letters of Intent to play Division I college hockey at Merrimack College, which will join Hockey East in 2016.

“We are proud to announce 12 additions to our current Women’s Ice Hockey roster,” Head Coach Erin Hamlen said. “Our 2015-16 class of student-athletes are from many different geographical areas, and it is exciting to bring them together to form the common bond of beginning a hockey program together at Merrimack.”

The signings include seven forwards, four defensemen, and one goalie. The women hail from four different states and three Canadian provinces.

“This will be a unique experience for all of these student-athletes, and each will have the opportunity to put their own stamp on this program. From goaltending to goal-scorers, this class is a diverse and talented group,” said Hamlen.

The commits are:

  • Annie Boeckers, forward, of Ostego, Minn. “Annie is an energy player who creates disturbance offensively,” said Hamlen. “She allows her linemates to benefit from her dynamic play, her speed, and her strong positioning. Her playmaking ability combined with her intelligence makes her a dangerous player in any situation.”
  • Jessica Bonfe, forward, of Woodbury, Minn. “Jessica is a strong, physical forward with great presence on the ice. She goes hard to the net and has the ability to score when under pressure. She is a natural athlete who provides numerous opportunities for her teammates with her quick release and up-tempo physical play,” said Hamlen.
  • Beatrice Dufor, defense, of Sarnia, Ontario. “Beatrice has the ability to make heads-up plays, as well as provide a physical presence in the defensive zone. She has a big shot and we’ll look to her to get pucks to the net consistently,” said Hamlen.
  • Dominique Kremer, defense, of Hudson, Iowa. “Dom has the unique ability to be both offensive, and a traditional defensive defenseman. Her quick feet and mobility are some of her strong assets. She recently gained valuable experience representing Team USA in the Under 18 series in August 2014, and will be looked at as a leader for our young team,” said Hamlen.
  • Meghan Martin, defense, of Newport, Vermont. “Meghan impressed our staff with her ability to make solid plays all over the ice. She makes the simple play, and is a reliable defenseman,” said Hamlen.
  • Madison Morey, forward, of Fairbanks, Alaska. “Maddy is a forward with great size and reach,” said Hamlen of the 5’8″ former member of the Alaska All-Stars. “What our staff noticed most when watching Maddy was her great hands. She has great stickhandling ability and it allows her to make incredible plays.”
  • Katelyn Rae, forward, of Courtice, Ontario. “Katelyn is a highly intelligent forward who compliments her line mates. She reads the play better than most and that translate to success on her line the majority of the time,” said Hamlen.
  • Samantha Ridgewell, goaltender, of Conquest, Saskatchewan. “Sam’s athletic ability along with her poise makes her highly successful between the pipes,” said Hamlen. “She has strong positioning skills and mental toughness.”
  • Allison Sexton, forward, of Stonewall, Manitoba. “Allison is a two-way forward with a smooth skating stride, and great jump,” said Hamlen. “When I watch Allison, I see someone who can turn it on and off at will. She’ll be a dangerous player at the next level offensively, and will be relied upon to play defense as well.”
  • Paige Sorensen, defense, of Plymouth, Minn. “Paige is a defenseman with offensive instincts and the growing ability to know where she can jump, and when to stay back,” said Hamlen. “I’m looking forward to having Paige’s maturity in a young defensive core.”
  • Paige Voight, forward, of St. Michael, Minn. “Paige is a strong, 200-foot forward who has great finish,” said Hamlen. “I’m excited to watch Paige’s game transition into the next level because she has worked hard to make so many improvements in such a short time.”
  • Emily Volpe, forward, of Whitby, Ontario. “Emily is a smooth-skating forward with a gritty style of play,” said Hamlen. “She prides herself as a faceoff specialist … her heads-up style of play will complement any line.”

The 12 women join the squad’s first four recruits:  forwards Jillian Battista of Tonawanda, New York; Marie Delarbre of Fussen, Germany; Jackie Pieper of Edina, Minn.; and goaltender Chaislyn Burgio of Quincy, Mass.

The team will play a club schedule until they join Hockey East in Women’s Division I NCAA hockey in 2016-2017.

A college hockey fan and hockey player, Krista Patronick decided to pursue a career in sports management after earning a degree in English from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell in 2009 and spending three years in journalism. She received her Master's of Sports Management from Southern New Hampshire University in 2013. After realizing she was meant to work in the hockey world, Krista went to work in any press box she could get into. She kept statistics, wrote shot charts, tweeted and live-blogged her way to a job as an operations coordinator and marketing director at The Hockey Academy in Hudson, N.H. She works with the company's two junior teams, adult hockey players, and youth teams. Krista is a goalie and enjoys playing hockey in her spare time. She is a die-hard Bruins and River Hawks hockey fan. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram: @KristaPatronick

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