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Hamilton, Utica women’s hockey teams nab conference honors

Ben Birnell
Sports writer
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Posted 3/2/23

The nationally ranked Hamilton College and Utica University women’s hockey teams have earned top honors in the respective conferences.

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Hamilton, Utica women’s hockey teams nab conference honors

The nationally ranked Hamilton College and Utica University women’s hockey teams have earned top honors in the respective conferences.
Three players from No. 6 ranked Hamilton College and coach Emily McNamara were honored by the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) as part of the All-Conference teams.
Fellow NCAA Division III foe and No. 12 ranked Utica University had eight members earn honors as part of the United Collegiate Hockey Conference all-conference teams. That includes Dave Clausen, who earned UCHC Coach of the Year.
For Hamilton, Abby Kuhns was selected the NESCAC’s Player of the Year and McNamara added Coach of the Year honors. She received the same honor in 2017.
Kuhns and Nancy Loh made the first team and Evie Sheridan was on the second team. Kuhns, who was on the first team as a defender in 2022, is the fourth NESCAC player of the year from Hamilton and the first since 2018. She is also just the second defender to be voted player of the year since the award was first given out in 2002.
Kuhns is second in the conference with six power-play goals and tied for 17th with seven goals overall, tied for sixth with 12 assists, tied for 11th with 19 points and tied for second with 30 blocked shots.
Loh joined Kuhns on the first team last year and was the NESCAC Rookie of the Year in 2019. The forward is tied for sixth with 22 points.
In 17 starts and more than 978 minutes in net, Sheridan is third in the NESCAC with a 1.29 goals against average and second with a .945 save percentage. Sheridan also has four shutouts and a 12-3-1 record.
McNamara has guided Hamilton to a team-record 19 wins and an overall record of 19-4-2. The Continentals finished in second place in the conference with a 12-3-1 record, and the No. 2 seed for the NESCAC tournament is best in team history.
Hamilton will play Colby College in the semifinals at 3:30 p.m. Friday at Amherst College.
Utica has program-record selections
There were a total of 10 honors for the Utica women’s hockey team.
Erica Sloan earned UCHC Player of the Year and All-UCHC First Team honors. The senior led the UCHC with an impressive 44 points including recording at least one point in 24 of the team’s 27 games this season.
Angela Hawthorne had arguably the best goaltending season in program history in earning UCHC Goaltender of the Year and All-UCHC First Team honors. The junior had a 16-2-3 record with six shutouts, a 0.97 goals against average and a .960 save percentage.
Georgiana Santullo earned UCHC First Team honors after leading the conference in assists with 26, was second with 42 points, and was fifth with 16 goals. She had at least one point in 22 of the team’s 27 games and recorded multiple points 11 times.
Madison Novotny earned UCHC First Team honors. She was a great presence on a Utica defense which is ranked third nationally in scoring defense and is eight in penalty killing percentages. The junior had nine assists with three goals this season.
Holly Silva is another key defender, earning UCHC Second Team honors. Silva was a notable piece of the Pioneers defense. Silva had a career-best 16 points with five goals and 11 assists.
Carly Stefanini earned UCHC honorable mention. The junior had 37 points with 12 goals and 25 assists.
Tess Barrett was selected to UCHC All-Rookie Team. She had 11 points with two goals and nine assists this season.
Clausen earned the UCHC Coach of the Year after helping Utica to back-to-back 20-win seasons and an appearance in the conference title game for first time in program history. The veteran led the team to a 22-2-3 mark including a 17-1-2 conference record. The Pioneers had an 23-game point streak during the season. It is Clausen’s second UCHC Coach of the Year honor after being named UCHC Co-Coach of the Year in 2020-21. 
No. 12 Utica will travel to Rochester to play Nazareth College for the UCHC title at 4 p.m. Saturday.


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