An award of The USA Hockey Foundation, the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award is presented annually to the top player in NCAA Division I women’s ice hockey. The 20201Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award winner will be announced at a later date. More details will follow.
Clarkson standout forward Elizabeth Giguere is happy to be in the mix again for the annual Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award — an award she won last season.
But at the moment, Giguere is focused on making the most of her senior year at Clarkson, despite the abbreviated season.
“It’s good if I’m in the conversation again, but I just hope we get to play as many games as possible,” Giguere said. “You never know what’s going to happen this year, so every game is important to me.”
Giguere was revealed as the 2020 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award winner during a special livestream on USA Hockey’s YouTube and Facebook channels.
“It was different this year because of [COVID-19],” Giguere said. “But when I learned that I won the award, it was still a big honor for myself and the school.”
Giguere led the nation last season with 37 goals in 37 games and finished second in the country with 66 points. As a sophomore, Giguere was named a top-10 finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award, while scoring 26 goals and 73 points in 40 games. As a freshman, Giguere scored 27 goals, including the overtime game winner to clinch Clarkson’s second consecutive national championship.
She joins past winners like Kendall Coyne-Schofield, Amanda Kessel, Brianna Decker, Meghan Duggan and Loren Gabel, her close friend and former Clarkson teammate.
“Following such great players, it’s just an honor to be next to them and for our school, too,” Giguere said. “It’s probably the biggest award in the NCAA for women right now. It just means a lot to me.”
In October, the university held an on-campus ceremony to honor Giguere and her historic accomplishment. Giguere thanked school administrators, coaches, her family and teammates during an acceptance speech.
Giguere, a native of Quebec City, Quebec, said she still hasn’t seen the actual Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award in person yet. Giguere said the award was shipped to her house while she was at New York-based Clarkson.
“My mom and my brothers opened it and they were FaceTiming me,” Giguere said. “I’m hoping it’s in my room right now. I’ll probably see it this summer.”
Giguere said this season has been different, from coronavirus concerns, scheduling alterations, or playing with more of a target as the defending Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award winner. Giguere has nine goals and 20 points in 15 games this season, good for sixth in the nation in scoring. She was named ECAC Player of the Week in January.
“I don’t think I’ve been producing as much as I would want, but at the same time, my team is doing a great job,” Giguere said. “It has, for sure, been harder for me to score goals this year, but I think I’ve been improving. I’m just going to have to pick it up for the next couple games. I think the goals are going to come at some point, but as long as my team is doing well, I’ll be happy.”
Giguere established several milestones in January.
Giguere became Clarkson’s all-time leading scorer when she collected an assist — her 214th career point — on the Golden Knights’ first goal in a rout against Long Island University. Giguere passed Gabel, her good friend, who finished with 213 points on 116 goals and 97 assists through 160 games. Giguere currently has 99 goals and 230 career points in 133 games.
“Points are just points to me,” Giguere said. “Passing Loren does not take anything away from her. She’s one of the best players that I ever played with. I think I just played with good people throughout my career and I kept producing. It was a good moment and we got the win.”
Giguere had a chance to talk to Gabel after the historic milestone.
“We talk every day on Snapchat,” Giguere said. “She said congrats, and I’ve been watching her, too. She’s been doing great with Hockey Canada and the past camp. Points are points. We’re still good friends.”
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.
Photos courtesy of Gary Mikel.