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<p>(ASU Women&#x27;s Hockey/</p>
(ASU Women's Hockey/

ASU Women’s Ice Hockey Season Preview

TEMPE, Ariz. – The ASU Women’s ACHA D1 Club Ice Hockey Team opens its season on September 28th, 2023 against Maryville University at 9:15pm at the Mountain American Community Iceplex (MACU).

Finishing last season as champions of the Western Women’s Collegiate Hockey league (WWCHL) in dominating fashion against Grand Canyon University 5-1, the Sun Devils look to go back-to-back as league champions this upcoming season. 

After losing top scorers Mason Walker, Amelia Smith, and Camryn Kozak, ASU will rely heavily on Sydney Paulsen (Sr.), Sam Murphy (Jr.), and Karsyn Hellman (Jr.). Paulsen was a point-per-game player for head coach Lidnsey Ellis’s lineup last season, recording 27 points in 24 games. Murphy finished top five in scoring for the Sun Devils with 16 points, playing in only 13 games, as a sophomore. The backbone to the Sun Devil defense last season was goalie Karsyn Hellman. Hellman was one of the best goalies in the WWCHL last season, posting a 1.56 GAA (Goals Against Average) and recorded four shutouts. She also had a solid 10-2-2 record between the pipes last season. 

Newly selected captain, Elle McKenna (Jr.) and returning captain, Jill Ketchum (Sr.) are both key returners. McKenna is a tough and relentless leader for the Sun Devils this upcoming season, being one of more physical players on the team, scoring 11 goals last season. When on the ice, Ketchum shows up on the scoresheet often. Only being able to play 10 games last season, she was limited to a still notable five points. In the 2020-21 season for the Sun Devils, she recorded 30 points in 23 games. Berkleigh Radcliffe (Sr.) and Sam Lutsch (Sr.) will also represent the team as assistant captains, wearing A’s on their jersey this season. Radcliffe was tied for third in power play points with three last season. Lutsch led all ASU defensemen in goals with three. 

Head coach Lindsey Ellis was active this offseason in the transfer portal, bringing in two new skaters for the team: Anita Fleming (Jr.) and Breanne Powell (So.). Fleming brings a two-way game for the Sun Devils, capable of playing as both a forward or defensemen. Powell, a fellow Canadian, recorded 16 points in her last season of prep school. 

The women’s ice hockey team this season consists of eight freshmen, eight sophomores, five juniors, and seven seniors. The Sun Devils have a good mix of players at each class and even with the loss of 10+ skaters from the team last season, ASU still has shown promising signs towards another strong campaign. 

With the start of the season two weeks away, ASU has already begun scrimmage action. The Sun Devils took on the Arziona Kachinas’ U19 AAA team in a two game scrimmage series this past weekend. ASU was victorious in both games, winning by scores of 5-0 and 3-1. ASU’s biggest strength came in putting the puck on the net, outshooting the Kachinas 53 to 6 and 50 to 5. The Sun Devils saw production from all classes of their team: Two freshmen, Mia Gervais and Paige Ring, both got in on the scoring. Sophomore’s Breanne Powell and Logan Sutera chipped in with a goal each. Junior’s Anita Fleming scored a goal and Sam Murphy tallied two assists. Senior Sydney Paulsen had two goals in preseason action as well. Sun Devil goalies Brooke Kimell (Fr.), Quinn Eatinger (So.), and Karsyn Hellman (Jr.) all got playing time in preseason, allowing only one goal over the two games played this past weekend. As to no surprise, Karsyn Hellman looks to still have the starting job locked up in net for this upcoming season, allowing zero goals in the two periods she played. 

ASU’s season runs from September to March, where the WWCHL Playoffs take place in late February and Nationals running from March 13-17th in St. Louis, Missouri. As mentioned earlier, the Sun Devils take on Maryville University September 28th and 29th in their first two games of the 2023-24 season. In other notable matchups, ASU will also play against rival Grand Canyon University and take on the University of Denver in November and January respectively. The Sun Devils look to bring home another WWCHL title and make some noise in the National Tournament this upcoming season.

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