Bulldogs at WCHA Media Day

KBJR 6 News at 6pm
Published: Sep. 14, 2022 at 5:23 PM CDT
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DULUTH, MN. (KBJR) - Today was WCHA Media Day as UMD women’s hockey head coach, Maura Crowell, and last years Patty Kazmaier finalist, Gabbie Hughes, took to the stand to talk about this years 5th ranked Bulldogs.

The Bulldogs have a wonderful opportunity in front of them this season. After making the NCAA Championship game two years in a row, UMD will host the Frozen Four right here at Amsoil this season. While there are high hopes that UMD can make the Frozen Four once again, coach Crowell knows it’ll be a process to get there.

Coach said, “Honestly we are not going to talk about it a whole lot especially in September. We’re just getting going and trying to figure out what kind of team we ae going to be this year. We have our eye on that prize of ultimately winning a national championship every year and it doesn’t matter where it is, we want to be in it. It’s obviously special to have it in Duluth and I know the university is really excited about hosting it and putting on a tremendous event but we have a lot of work to do to get to that point, so we will keep it in the distance and not talk about it too much right now.”

The Bulldogs will have a wide variety of depth on this years team, but the two leading the way will be the veterans, Ashton Bell and Gabbie Hughes. Ashton comes back to UMD after spending a year with the Canadian national team and winning an Olympic gold medal. She is a preseason WCHA All-American. Gabbie Hughes is as well and she enters her final season in a bulldog sweater as one of the best players in women’s college hockey.

Hughes said, “I just want to have a lot of fun this year. It’s my last year as a Bulldog and last year putting on that jersey so just soaking in every single moment I can with my teammates and staff here, which is hard because it’ll be the last time I get to do a lot of things here at UMD. The points and everything, that will come when they come but most importantly I just want to soak in every moment I have putting on a Bulldog jersey and doing that for one more year is sad but really excited to have that experience again.”

The Bulldogs were picked to finish 4th in the WCHA this year, but to put things in perspective, four of the top five ranked teams in the country reside in the conference.