Dunville’s Blanche wins new AUS women’s hockey award
Newfoundlander Nicole Blanche has been named the first-ever winner of the Atlantic University Sports (AUS) women’s hockey top defensive player award.
The award will be given annually to a skater who consistently excels in defensive aspects of the game and displays strong play in all areas of the ice individually and as part of her team’s defensive tactics.
A fourth- year commerce student from Dunville, Blanche is part of a Huskies squad that finished first in the AUS regular-season standings. Saint Mary’s (18-3-3) boasted the lowest goals-against average in the conference at just 1.71 per game.
Blanche was selected as the winner of this award based upon criteria such as faceoff success, blocked shots, forechecking, rush-zone defending, penalty killing and the ability to shut down the opposition’s top players.
Saint Mary’s began a bestof- three playoff semifinal against the University of Moncton Thursday night in Halifax, winning Game 1 by a score of 3-2. The other semifinal between the St. Thomas Tommies and St. Francis Xavier X-Women started Friday in Fredericton, N.B.
Nicole Blanche was recently named Atlantic University Sports’ best defensive player in women’s hockey.