Let's Play Hockey newspaper has announced the five finalists for the 19th annual Ms. Hockey Award, presented to the top senior girls' high school hockey player in Minnesota. Three future Gophers are among the top five candidates for the 2014 award: Minnetonka defenseman Sydney Baldwin, Benilde-St. Margaret's forward Kelly Pannek and Hopkins forward Nina Rodgers.
Each of the finalists has committed to a Division I women's hockey program as the top five also includes Irondale forward Sam Donovan (Brown) and Red Wing forward Nicole Schammel (Minnesota State). The five honorees have scored an average of 34 goals and 36 assists this season and have helped their respective teams to top 10 rankings.
In addition to their on-ice performance, all five finalists are standouts in the classroom as they check in with a cumulative grade-point average of 3.66.
The 2014 Ms. Hockey Award winner will be named at the Ms. Hockey Awards Banquet on Sunday, Feb. 23, at 11:30 a.m., at the RiverCentre in St. Paul. The award is sponsored by Let's Play Hockey, the Minnesota Wild and Shakopee Chevrolet. Fox 9's Dawn Mitchell will serve as the banquet emcee, while Fox Sports North's Jamie Hersch will be the keynote speaker. To order tickets to the Ms. Hockey Banquet, call Let's Play Hockey at 612-729-0023.
In addition to on-ice talent, criteria for the Let's Play Hockey Ms. Hockey Award include academics, community/extracurricular activities, citizenship and coachability.