University Minnesota Duluth head women’s hockey coach Shannon Miller announced today that four more student-athletes have signed letters of intent to play at UMD. Forwards Lara Fridfinnson (Arborg, Manitoba), Chantal Larocque (St. Anne, Manitoba), defenseman Jocelyne Larocque (St. Anne, Manitoba), and goalie Lana Steck (Winnipeg, Manitoba) will join the Bulldogs for the 2007-08 season. These four players join an incoming class of seven players total, three of which were inked last November.
Coach Miller is “extremely excited to add these four outstanding student-athletes" to the three previous signees: forwards Haley Irwin (Thunder Bay, Ontario), Marie-Andreé Leclerc-Auger (Sherbrooke, Quebec), and defenseman Tara Gray (Toronto, Ontario).
"This class will add to our existing strong nucleus and they will have an immediate impact at UMD," Miller said. "We believe they will go down as one of our best recruiting classes ever.”
Forward Laura Fridfinnson comes from the powerhouse program Calgary Oval Extreme and Canada’s U-22 National Team. She will have an immediate impact due to her speed, vision and experience.
“Laura moved from Winnipeg to Calgary to train with the Olympic Oval Extreme high performance program," said Miller of Fridfinnson. "There, she gained playing and practice experience by competing with and against some of the best players in the world. Laura is a very smooth, skilled forward and will immediately bring offensive results.”
Forward Chantal Larocque also comes to UMD via the Calgary Oval Extreme with her younger sister, Jocelyne.
“Chantal is a tough, fast, no nonsense forward joining us from the Olympic Oval program in Calgary, Alberta,” Miller said. “Chantal’s competitive nature and fiery playing style stirs things up on the ice and makes good things happen. She is a player who knows how to compete and get things done.”
Jocelyne Larocque joins her sister, Chantal, from the Calgary Oval Extreme program and is member of the Canadian U-22 National Team.
“Jocelyn’s high level of experience, ability to skate, and ability to handle the puck will immediately make her one of our team’s top defensemen," Miller said of Larocque.
The Larocque siblings are the first-ever sister tandem to suit up for the Bulldogs.
Goalie Lana Steck rounds out the 2007 recruiting class. She, along with present Bulldog players Kim Martin and Amie Meyer, will make up the UMD goaltending unit.
“Lana Steck is believed to be a great ‘up and coming’ net minder. She recently backstopped Team Manitoba to a second place finish at the highly competitive Canada Winter Games,” Miller said.
*All signings are contingent upon admission to the University and compliance with NCAA rules, including certification by the NCAA Clearinghouse