New season, same expectations for Quinnipiac women’s ice hockey


Photo Courtesy: Quinnipiac Athletics

Mike Dalton

By: Mike Dalton

New season, captains, players, strategies, game plans and questions… same expectations.

After being eliminated by the Clarkson Golden Knights in the 2019 ECAC Hockey quarterfinals, the Bobcats bid farewell to the last remaining class that was a part of the 2016 team that won a program record 30 games, capturing their first ever ECAC Hockey championship, qualifying them for the NCAA tournament. Since then, the Bobcats haven’t made it past the first round of the playoffs, going 1-6.

Looking back at it:

Time off from something can give you the opportunity to reflect on your past and learn how you can use these experiences to better yourself in the future.

“I learned a lot about managing expectations and standing up to pressure,” senior goaltender and assistant captain Abbie Ives said.

Ives recalled the weekend of Feb. 2 to be the peak of her struggles when the Saint Lawrence Saints and aforementioned Golden Knights came to Hamden. Ives surrendered eight goals on 37 shots.

“There were times last season where I was thinking a little too much about my stats and results that I wasn’t playing the way I wanted to.”

The Offseason:

Now that Ives will be wearing the “A” on her jersey this season, she wants to be the player that inspires the rest of her team to push themselves and each other as far as they can. But she’s inspired more than just the players.

“Abbie Ives is somebody who sees the bigger picture in how she leads and comes out with such insightful comments and things that I think really encompass the whole group,” Quinnipiac women’s ice hockey Cass Turner said.

Kenzie Prater and Kati Tabin will serve as co-captains, while Olivia Konigson will join Ives as an assistant captain. Konigson’s the only junior on the captain squad. All four players are first year skippers respectively and they all have different leadership qualities.

“They’re all very different but they balance each other,” Turner said. “Kenzie Prater’s incredibly organized and is always on top of what’s up next. Kati Tabin’s somebody who’s so intense. When she speaks, people listen. She has so much respect from her teammates because of her intensity and her drive to want to win. Olivia Konigson has great balance. She’s so connected with so many people on our team. She’s competitive and she knows what it’s going to take to prepare. They understand where the strengths lie in each other and are willing to combine those to be a great team.”


The Bobcats took in eight new players this past summer. Seven of them freshman, the other player being junior forward Taylor Girard, who transferred from Lindenwood University in Saint Charles, MO.

“Most of us freshmen came here for five weeks in the summer for preparation and training,” freshman forward Kenzie Hauswirth said.

During this, the Bobcats went back to basics in order to get the freshman class adapted to Division I college ice hockey. Hauswirth remembers focusing on checking and making sure to get good stick position to help win puck battles.

“They started to teach us that even in the summer so coming into the actual season with our coaches on the ice, we were able to have a lot of those habits and rituals down which made us all feel a lot more comfortable,” Hauswirth said.

Hauswirth is one of four freshman forwards entering this season after the Bobcats lost past senior forwards and last year’s top point-getters Kenzie Lancaster, Melissa Samoskevich and Randi Marcon to graduation. There will be pressure for this freshman class to score early and often, but Hauswirth seems to have a calm approach to what could feel like an endless demand.

“I think all the pressure is good pressure,” Hauswirth said. “You look at it in a good way.”


This good pressure Hauswirth mentioned can be seen on a daily basis.

“In practice, they have a lot of fun with it,” Turner said. “But they’re always keeping track of score. They’re always battling and they trash talk a little bit out there too.”

After all, practice makes perfect. It establishes work ethic too. Ives pointed this out, particularly in Hauswirth and freshman defender Kate Reilly.

“[Kate] will go on the ice in the morning, practice and stay after practice,” Ives said. “She’s like a work horse. The same goes with Kenzie Hauswirth. They always want to get better and they’re never tired of hockey and that’s nice to see.”

Biggest Obstacle?

Since 2016, the Bobcats have finished with less overall wins than they had in the previous season. They also haven’t had a player score 30 or more points in a single season since four

players did so in 2016. There’s no denying that the Bobcats have had trouble putting points on the board the past few years. So what’s this obstacle the Bobcats haven’t been able to overcome?

“Being able to communicate with each other,” Hauswirth said. “We’ve all been very good with that, but when things go wrong it’s about how we react to that. So if you’re frustrated with someone, being able to talk it out with them instead of holding on to it and letting that play into our games.”

It’s assumed that if you’re a part of a team sport, then everyone on that team should think and act as one. Ideally, that’s what you hope for, but realistically, that will never happen.

Kenzie Hauswirth may look at communication as an obstacle, but Cass Turner said she saw good communication during games last year, giving the impression that it was a good team quality.

“I’m sure what [Kenzie’s] referring to is being on the ice and being able to think quick enough to say ‘okay I want the puck in the middle’ when you want it or you want it on the wall or towards the net,” Turner said. “To think quickly in that communication, it takes some time to build that up. I’m sure for her it’s being able to think quick enough in those moments, keep your feet moving, ready to make plays and still be able to communicate clearly.”

Every team will have different obstacles standing in their way all year. And no two players or coaches will ever see eye-to-eye on everything. But that’s what makes every game worth watching because you never know how things will end up unfolding.

The Bobcats will open their season on the road, taking on Providence College Friday, Oct. 4 at 6 p.m.