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Friday, September 19, 2008

Season Preview from Umdbulldogs.com

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The University of Minnesota Duluth women's hockey team and 2008 NCAA champions will take to the ice for the Bulldogs first practice of the 2008-2009 season this Monday, September 22 on the UMD campus. UMD, which earned its fourth NCAA title in program history this past March, will no doubt draw the eyes of the rest of the league when they get set to begin their title defense on October 3 in Niagara Falls, New York.


-- The Bulldogs graduated just one player (forward Karine Demeule 16g, 5a) from their 2007-2008 NCAA championship squad, returning 18 players who now own championship rings.

-- Junior goaltender and All-American Kim Martin, who was a top-three Kazmaier finalist as a sophomore, set a single-season UMD records for most wins (31), saves (843) and a save percentage of (.943). Martin is just 11 wins shy of overtaking the Bulldog career goaltender wins record, which is currently held by Riitta Schaublin, who picked up 52 over her four-year career.

-- Sophomore forwards Haley Irwin (the reigning WCHA Scoring Champion in her debut season), and Laura Fridfinnson ended the 2007-08 season on a 16-game scoring streak that started on Jan. 19, 2008. The Bulldogs were 15-1 over that span.

-- Head coach Shannon Miller is the fourth winningest coach all-time in the NCAA after having amassed a 234-61-25 record in nine seasons. Miller has won more NCAA titles (four), holds more NCAA Frozen Four wins (nine), has made more NCAA tournament appearances (seven) and has won more NCAA tournament games (11) than any other head coach in women’s hockey history.

-- Senior blueliner Myriam Trepanier, who was ranked sixth in the NCAA in scoring a season ago and recorded the highest output of a defenseman (31 points) in five years for the Bulldogs, is currently sitting in sixth place all-time among UMD defenseman with 52 career points. She is just 10 points back of cracking the top-five, and 25 from breaking into the top three.

-- Sophomore Haley Irwin, who exploded to opponents nets as a rookie by racking up 60 points in 37 games played, is only 30 points out of a top-ten slot on the ladder of UMD’s career leaders for points.

-- The Bulldogs finished the season by winning 25 of their last 26 games, and will enter the 2008-2009 season on a 10-game winning streak.

-- UMD will showcase five players who played in the 2006 Winter Olympic Games, including three (Kim Martin, Pernilla Winberg and Jenni Asserholt) that earned silver medals with Team Sweden.

-- The Bulldogs will host the University of Minnesota at the DECC for their opening home series of the current season. While UMD will unveil its fourth championship banner Oct. 10th in front of the Gophers, it was Minnesota that handed the Bulldogs three of their four losses last year, all by two goals or more.

-- After finishing the year as the NCAA’s highest scoring team last season, averaging an impressive 4.26 tallies a contest, the Bulldogs will return 130 of their 166 goals from 2007-2008. The output of 166 goals was the fourth best recorded by a UMD team in program history.

-- UMD was an assertive 20-2-1 (.910) last season in the comfortable confines of the DECC, and loved Saturday nights, posting a 19-1-1 record (.950).

-- The Bulldogs have won their last four contests that have gone into overtime dating back to March 9, 2007, including both outings during the 2007-2008 season.

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