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 2019 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award winner will be announced on March 23 in conjunction with the NCAA Women's Frozen Four in Hamden, Conn.
In just two seasons, Clarkson University sophomore standout Elizabeth Giguere has already established herself as one of the top scorers in program history.
She has also established herself as one of the best in women’s college hockey.
Last week, Giguere was named a top-10 finalist for the 2019 Patty Kazmaier Award, presented annually to the top women’s college hockey player in the nation.
“It’s an honor to be nominated,” Giguere said. “I wasn’t expecting it all as a sophomore.”
Giguere is most certainly worthy, leading the scoring race with 23 goals and 63 points through 34 games. She also leads the nation with 40 assists as well as in plus/minus with a plus-54. Giguere, who has scored five short-handed goals, has at least one point in 29 of 34 games, including 21 multiple-point outings, and was named November’s ECAC Hockey Player of the Month.
Giguere shattered the Clarkson freshman scoring record last season, reaching 100 points faster than any other player in women’s program history. She has 50 goals and 134 points in just 75 games.
“I’m just happy to contribute to our team success,” Giguere said. “Records really aren’t in my mind to be honest. I wouldn’t have the success that I’ve had without my teammates and linemates.”
One in particular is linemate and fellow star forward Loren Gabel. Gabel, a senior, was also named a top-10 finalist for the 2019 Patty Kazmaier Award last week.
“To have two Clarkson Golden Knights nominated on the same team, I think it’s an honor for the program and the university,” Giguere said. “I’m just happy that we’re both in this top group. It shows that Clarkson is a great school and program.”
Gabel was named a top-10, and then a top three finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award last season. Giguere and her Clarkson teammates were in attendance during last year’s Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award ceremony and brunch. While Gabel didn’t win the award — it went to Daryl Watts of Boston College — Giguere enjoyed supporting her standout teammate during her big moment.
“[Gabel] is someone that I really look up to, and I’m just going to keep looking up to her and trying to be like her,” Giguere said. “Being with her in the top-10 is an honor. I’m going to try to help her be successful because she’s doing the same with me. We push each other every day.”
Giguere and Gabel push each other so much that they are ranked first and second in the nation in the scoring race. Gabel trails Giguere by two points with a league-high 34 goals and 61 points in 32 games. The teammates have combined for 57 goals, nearly half of Clarkson’s season total of 128 that ranks as the third-most in Division I.
“We play on the same line, so if someone gets a point, someone gets a point,” Giguere said. “It doesn’t really matter to me. I don’t see it as a competition. Together, we’re going to work hard to push our team and go as far as we can. At the end of the day, I would much rather end up with the national championship than personal awards.”
Giguere did just that last season, helping Clarkson to a second consecutive national title.
“It was awesome and probably the best experience in my life, winning with that team and our seniors,” Giguere said. “I felt like we deserved that championship and we worked hard for it. At the end, it was the best feeling ever.”
Giguere’s biggest goal of her freshman season was her 27th of the season — her last one — as the standout forward netted the game-winning goal at 7:55 of overtime in the championship-game victory against Colgate.
“I don’t even know how to explain it,” Giguere said. “You work so hard for that moment. It was an incredible feeling to score. I was so happy for the team, the school and the program. It just ended up that I scored the last goal.”
Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.