2015-16 Team-by-Team Previews: Harvard Crimson

2015-16 Roster | 2015-16 Schedule

Head Coach: Katey Stone (22nd Season)
2015-16 Captains: Michelle Picard (C), Emerance Maschmeyer (C)

2014-15 Season Recap

Record: 27-6-3 (16-4-2 ECAC/tied for 1st place)
ECAC Postseason: ECAC Tournament Champions; advanced to ECAC semifinals with quarterfinal series win vs. Yale, defeated Quinnipiac in semifinals, and defeated Cornell in championship game
NCAA Tournament: National runner-ups; advanced to Frozen Four with win vs. Quinnipiac, defeated Boston College to advance to national championship game, defeated by Minnesota for the national title

Though the Crimson fell just short of a national title in 2015, it was a banner year anyways for the club, and the best season they’ve had in several years. With 27 wins, they posted their best record since going 32-2-0 in 2007-08.

After two quick wins against RPI and Union to start the year, Harvard soon found itself fighting an uphill battle, going winless in its next four, highlighted by an emphatic 10-2 loss to Boston College. That proved to be a turning point for the team, as the Crimson went on a tear afterwards, putting together a 10-game win streak in which they outscored opponents 45-10. After dropping a decision to Dartmouth on Jan. 17, they earned wins against Cornell twice, Quinnipiac, and Boston University during another big 9-1-1 stretch of play. In the midst of those 10 games came one of the biggest wins of the season, marking a full turnaround from that rout at the hands of the Eagles in November. Harvard handed Boston College its first loss of the season on Feb. 10, defeating BC 3-2 to win the Beanpot championship.

The Crimson suffered a 1-0 loss to Clarkson on the last day of the regular season, Senior Day for the team, but bounced back right away with a sweep over Yale in the following weekend’s ECAC quarterfinal series. Miye D’Oench scored the overtime winner against Quinnipaic in the semifinals to help the squad reach the ECAC title game, where they scored five straight third-period goals to defeat Cornell, 7-3.

With the ECAC crown already in hand, Harvard took down Quinnipiac again in the NCAA Tournament quarterfinals, this time by a score of 5-0. At the Frozen Four in Minneapolis, Minn., they upset Boston College for the second time, advancing to the national championship game with a 2-1 win over the Eagles. They couldn’t do enough to power past the home side, however, losing the title match-up to Minnesota, 4-1.

It was quite the year individually for the Crimson as well. Senior defenseman Sarah Edney was named a Second Team All-American, as well as the ECAC’s Best Defenseman. Junior Mary Parker was named to the All-ECAC Second Team and the All-Ivy League First Team, while goaltender Emerance Maschmeyer picked up Third Team All-ECAC and First Team All-Ivy honors. Forward Lexie Laing was named to the ECAC All-Rookie Team, defender Michelle Picard was selected to the All-Ivy Second Team, and forward Sydney Daniels collected All-Ivy Honorable Mention honors. Edney, Maschmeyer, and Parker also earned New England Division I All-Star nods.

Meet the Newcomers

D Kate Hallett, St. Paul United, Minnesota Jr. Whitecaps

A two-year captain for St. Paul United, Hallett earned a tryout for the U.S. Under-18 Team in 2013, following her attendance at the USA Hockey national development camp all-star games from 2010-13. She was named to the Minnesota all-state team in 2014 and 2015, and also earned the Hobey Baker Character Award in 2014 and the Stryker Character Award in 2015. Hallett was an all-conference honoree and the St. Paul United team MVP in 2013 and 2015. Let’s Play Hockey published a Q&A with Hallett back in December, which you can read here.

D Kaitlin Tse, Canadian Under-18 Team, Toronto Jr. Aeros

Tse was a member of Canada’s silver medal-winning U18 squad at the 2015 IIHF Under-18 World Championships, and also took part in the team’s three-game series against the United States in August 2014. Before playing for the Jr. Aeros, she suited up for Assabet Valley’s U16 club, and won a national championship with the team in 2012. She won a silver medal with Team Ontario at the Canada Winter Games in 2015, and also helped the Jr. Aeros to a runner-up finish at the 2014 provincial championships. A lacrosse star as well, Tse was invited to Canada’s National Women’s Development Camp this past summer.

F Bradley Fusco, Buckingham Browne and Nichols School, East Coast Wizards

Fusco was a five-time letterwinner at Buckingham Browne and Nichols School, and was an ISL All-League honoree in 2013 and 2015. She hit the century mark for career points while at Buckingham Browne and Nichols, and also skated for the East Coast Wizards club team.

F Erin Ozturk, Westminster School, Connecticut Polar Bears

At Westminster, Ozturk earned letters in hockey, field hockey, and track & field. The Huntington Beach, Calif., native also suited up for the Connecticut Polar Bears U19 AAA and Connecticut Midfairfield Stars U19 AAA clubs.

F Audrey Warner, Shattuck St. Mary’s

Warner was also a three-sport letterwinner at the prep level, starring in hockey, field hockey, and lacrosse while at Shattuck St. Mary’s. She won SSM’s Sportsmanship Award for hockey in 2015 and was a member of the national championship squad in 2013.

F Grace Zarzecki, U.S. Under-18 Team, Chicago Mission

Zarzecki helped the U.S. U18 squad to silver medals at both the 2013 and 2014 IIHF Under-18 World Championships. With the Chicago Mission, she was a part of state championship teams in 2013, 2014, and 2015, and won a high school state championship with the Latin School of Chicago (Ill.) in 2015 as well. She was honored as the AHAI Player of the Year this past season, and won a USA Hockey U19 national championship with the Mission in 2015 to cap off her career with the club, scoring 17 points at Nationals.

For more details on the Crimson’s incoming class, read the GoCrimson.com release here.

2015-16 Season Preview

Key Departures: D Sarah Edney, D Marissa Gedman, D Josephine Pucci, F Samantha Reber, F Kalley Armstrong, F Lyndsey Fry, F Hillary Crowe
Key Returners: F Miye D’Oench, F Mary Parker, F Sydney Daniels, F Karly Heffernan, D Michelle Picard, G Emerance Maschmeyer
Key Additions: D Kaitlin Tse, D Kate Hallett, F Grace Zarzecki

Harvard enjoyed a great season in 2014-15, both in the ECAC and on a national stage, but they’ll have a lot of work to do this season to return to that level. They had the best offense in the ECAC, scoring at a 3.64 goals per game clip, and the widest goal margin per game, outscoring their opponents by an average of 2.06 goals. A lot of that was due to holding a very balanced attack, coupled with a strong defense and excellent goaltending. The question will be whether the Crimson will get that same mix of all three again this year.

We’ll start with the position that will undoubtedly be an area of strength once again: goaltending. Senior netminder Emerance Maschmeyer has been nothing short of outstanding in her first three years with the team, and there’s no reason to think she won’t perform at the same level again. She led the ECAC and was fourth in the country last year with a .943 save percentage, and also boasted a 1.48 goals-against average, an 18-5-3 record, and three shutouts. With Maschmeyer in net, Harvard has a chance to win every night, even on those occasions when they’re spending a lot of time in their own zone or just can’t seem to find the back of the net.

In front of Maschmeyer, however, there’s some work to be done this season. The graduations of Sarah Edney, Josephine Pucci, and Marissa Gedman means the defensive corps needs to be revamped; those are big minutes in the top four that the team now needs to fill. Senior Michelle Picard, who has helped lead that group of defenders for much of her career, will now be the unquestioned #1 on the back-end. But it’s going to be a nearly impossible task for the Crimson to ice the same quality defense with what they have now, after those three losses. Juniors Abbey Frazer and Brianna Mastel will need to step up, and rookies Kate Hallett and Kaitlin Tse should make an impact right away. But none of those players are fully seasoned for such primary roles; Harvard will likely just be looking for reliability out of that group, even if they’re not extra flashy or dominant in all three zones.

Even with some notable losses up front, the Crimson still have several good pieces to work with among their forward group. Samantha Reber was a big part of the offense, and she’ll be missed, as will secondary scorers Kalley Armstrong, Lyndsey Fry, and Hillary Crowe. But the team’s leading scorers, Mary Parker and Miye D’Oench, are both returning for their senior seasons after big junior campaigns; Parker totaled 39 points to lead the squad while D’Oench was second with 33 and tied for the goal-scoring lead with 19. Sydney Daniels enjoyed a pretty big breakout year as a sophomore last year, also posting 19 goals on the year. We should see sophomores Karly Heffernan and Lexie Laing in bigger roles too after solid 20-plus-point rookie seasons from both. U.S. U18 team alum Grace Zarzecki could chip in with some points right away as a freshman, and the return of Dylanne Crugnale provides the the Crimson with another good depth option.

The biggest question mark for Harvard heading into the season lies on the blue line. They won’t be able to replace those three veteran players right away, but we’ve seen Harvard go with a smaller bench before back in 2013-14 when they lacked depth in talent. The team might be comfortable doing the same again if they can at least find a suitable mix in the top-four. They’re good to go with Maschmeyer in net, and they’ll have three proven scorers in Parker, D’Oench, and Daniels leading the way up front. Heffernan and Laing will help bolster the top-six, and they should at the least be able to ice three competitive lines. While a lot still remains to be seen on the defensive end, Maschmeyer should help ease the transition there, and give the Crimson a chance to compete for the ECAC crown again.

Schedule Highlights

Oct. 30 vs. Clarkson
Oct. 31 vs. St. Lawrence
Nov. 24 vs. Northeastern
Nov. 27-28 at Minnesota Duluth
Dec. 5 at Quinnipiac
Jan. 8 vs. Cornell
Jan. 19 vs. Boston College
Feb. 2 vs. Boston College (Beanpot semifinal)
Feb. 20 at Cornell

 

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