2015-16 Team-by-Team Previews: Minnesota State Mavericks

2015-16 Roster | 2015-16 Schedule

Head Coach: John Harrington (1st Season)
2015-16 Captains: Unannounced

2014-15 Season Recap

Record: 3-32-1 (1-26-1-0 WCHA/8th place)
WCHA Postseason: Conference quarterfinals; swept by Minnesota in the first round of the WCHA playoffs

Unfortunately, there were few highlights for the Mavericks last season, as the team only collected three wins overall and a just one conference victory. In their fourth game of the year, Minnesota State earned a 1-1 tie against St. Cloud State, but lost every other contest for the remainder of 2014, posting a 0-15-1 record to start the season. They opened 2015 with a loss to St. Lawrence on Jan. 3, and then finally picked up their first win of the season against Lindenwood four days later.

The Mavericks beat the Lions again in their next game on Jan. 9, but a seven-game losing streak followed before the Mavericks earned their first and only conference win against St. Cloud State on Feb. 2. That was all Minnesota State would be able to get out of the 2014-15 season, as the team ended the year on a nine-game skid, including the two losses to the Gophers in the WCHA quarterfinals.

Following the season, senior Kathleen Rogan was awarded with the 2015 Post-Graduate Scholarship by the WCHA, becoming the first student-athlete from Minnesota State to receive the award. Three Mavericks, including Rogan, were honored as WCHA Scholar-Athletes after the season. She finished her career in Mankato ranked fourth all-time for the program in scoring with 82 points (39 goals, 43 assists), while senior defender Shelby Moteyunas graduated as the fifth-highest scoring defenseman in Mavericks history with career totals of seven goals, 19 assists, and 26 points.

Meet the Newcomers

G Julia Carle, Minnehaha United

As a senior, Carle recorded a .940 save percentage, 2.24 goals-against average, and 10-13-0 record for the United. She was named a semifinalist for the Let’s Play Hockey Senior Goaltender of the Year Award in 2014-15, and was an all-conference honorable mention honoree as a sophomore and junior. Carle was picked for the Minnesota Hockey/CCM High School NIT in 2015 as well.

D Megan Hinze, Chaska/Chanhassen H.S.

Hinze was a two-time captain with the Storm Hawks and was also named the club’s most valuable defenseman two years in a row. She scored seven goals, 14 assists, and 21 points in the 2014-15 season, and was selected for the Minnesota Hockey/CCM High School NIT.

D Lena Duesterhoeft, ESC Planegg

The German-born Duesterhoeft most recently played for ESC Planegg, competing in the Elite Women’s Hockey League (EWHL) over in Europe.

D Leila Kilduff, North American Hockey Academy

F Emily Antony, Rogers High School, Minnesota Revolution

In 2010-11, Antony collected all-conference honorable mention honors and then was named an all-conference honoree in 2011-12 and 2012-13. While playing for Achiever Academy in 2013-14, she garnered all-state honorable mention honors as well.

F Jordan McLaughlin, Green Rapids/Greenway H.S.

In 2014-15, McLaughlin was honored as the All-Area Girls Hockey Player of the Year by the Grand Rapids Herald-Review, Hibbing Daily Tribune, and Mesabi Daily News, and earned three All-Area selections in her career. She ended her career as the Lightning’s fifth all-time leading scorer with 158 points, including 60 as a senior, which earned Class AA all-state honorable mention accolades.

F Corbin Boyd, Hopkins H.S.

A four-time All-Lake Conference honoree at Hopkins, she was a team captain and led the squad in scoring as a senior with 11 goals, 33 assists, and 44 points in 24 games. Like several other Mavericks newcomers, Boyd was selected to the Minnesota Hockey/CCM High School NIT and was a two-time all-state honorable mention honoree.

F Steph Keryluk, Team Wisconsin, Madison Capitals

F Megan Berg, Minnesota Revolution

F Emily Harris, Boston Shamrocks

2015-16 Season Preview

Key Departures: F Nicole Schammel, F Kathleen Rogan, D Shelby Moteyunas, G Erin Krichiver
Key Returners: F Hannah Davidson, F Katie Johnson, F Elin Johansson, D Anna Keys, D Anna-Marie Fiegert, G Brianna Quade
Key Additions: G Julia Carle, F Jordan McLaughlin, F Corbin Boyd, F Steph Keryluk

The Mavericks have a lot of work to do in order to rebuild and improve the program’s standing in the conference, and they will see several changes this season already as they work towards that. They’ll be moving everything over to the Verizon Wireless Center, so that’s a definite upgrade in their facilities. And they’ll also be starting the year with a new bench boss. After the team finished in last place in the WCHA in 2014-15, then-head coach Eric Means resigned, and 1980 Miracle on Icer John Harrington was hired in his place. With an incoming class of 10 freshmen, it looks like we could start to see some turnover on the roster as well, but he’ll have his hands full trying to mold them into a competitive squad in his first season.

Last year’s starter, Erin Krichiver, was tasked with replacing Danielle Butters, and she did about as well as she could while seeing 1,101 shots on the season. Krichiver is now graduated, leaving senior Brianna Quade as the lone goaltender on the Mavericks’ roster who has any collegiate playing experience. She made 13 appearances last season as Krichiver’s backup, including nine starts, and made 40 saves or more on five difference occasions, led by a career-high 50 stops against Wisconsin on Jan. 31. Incoming freshman Julia Carle may push for playing time right away, but it’s hard to imagine Minnesota State getting better than the .905 save percentage-level of goaltending it saw from Krichiver last season.

One big reason why is because the Mavericks were dead last in the entire country in shots on goal against per game last season, yielding 43.08 on average. In fact, they were the only team to give up more than 40 per game. The loss of Shelby Moteyunas, the WCHA’s third-leading shot blocker in 2014-15, isn’t going to help matters. She blocked 78 shots while leading Minnesota State in defensemen scoring with seven points. Junior Anna-Marie Fiegert and sophomore Anna Keys become the Mavericks’ likely leaders on the blue line, and they’ll look for bigger contributions from redshirt sophomore Sara Bustad and freshmen like Megan Hinze and Lena Duesterhoeft.

The team will also be desperate for some kind of scoring combo up front. Nicole Schammel’s 22-point rookie campaign was a bright spot last season, but she’s transferring to Minnesota, and the team also graduated forward Kathleen Rogan. Sophomore Hannah Davidson is the team’s leading returning scorer, with 15 points last year, and classmates Elin Johansson and Amanda Conway should also be in the mix of things. Beyond that, Minnesota State will look for contributions from the six freshmen forwards it is bringing on this year. But only three players on the entire roster reached double digits for points last year, and only one-Davidson-returns. The league’s worst scoring offense (1.17 goals per game in 2014-15) won’t be getting much help this season, and finding the back of the net will be a struggle again.

It’s clear that the Mavericks need help in all areas, but the additions they’re making won’t be enough to address that. They’re also going to be icing an extremely young roster, with 10 freshmen, 11 sophomores, three juniors, and one senior. They’re not going to be able to clean everything up and take a big step forward competitively this season, but the benefit to having so much youth is they can start setting the table for the future. With a new head coach behind the bench in Harrington, that should be the biggest goal for the team this year.

Schedule Highlights

Oct. 2-3 at RIT
Oct. 9-10 vs. North Dakota
Oct. 30-31 vs. Wisconsin
Nov. 13-14 at St. Cloud State
Nov. 27-28 vs. Minnesota
Jan. 3-4 vs. Lindenwood
Jan. 8-9 vs. St. Cloud State
Jan. 16-17 at Minnesota
Feb. 5-6 vs. Minnesota Duluth
Feb. 19-20 vs. Bemidji State

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