March 8, 2017 - National Women's Hockey League (NWHL)
BROOKLYN, NY- 2016 first overall draft selection Kelsey Koelzer is joining the National Women's Hockey League immediately after signing a contract today with the New York Riveters for the remainder of the 2016-17 season. Koelzer, who just completed her collegiate playing career at Princeton, will practice with the Riveters tonight at 7:30 pm at Barnabas Health Hockey House in Newark.
"Being part of the NWHL was a priority for me because I want to take my development from four years at Princeton and utilize it playing with and against some of the best women's hockey players in the world," said Koelzer. "I am sad that my collegiate career has come to an end, but I was lucky to play alongside amazing players and coaches. I'm hoping to use that experience to contribute to the remainder of the Riveters' season in any way I can."
Koelzer was one of the ten finalists this year for the prestigious Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award, presented by the USA Hockey Foundation to the best player in Division I women's college hockey. In 128 games over four seasons with Princeton, the 5-foot-9 defender had 39 goals and 61 assists for 100 points. Before college, Koelzer developed in the New Jersey Rockets program.
"After drafting her last year and closely following her outstanding senior season, we're ecstatic to have Kelsey begin her Riveters career today," said Riveters GM and coach Chad Wiseman. "She is a dynamic defender who will make us a better team."
The Riveters' regular season finale is Sunday at 4:00 pm against Boston in Newark. The Riveters host a semifinal playoff game on Friday, March 17 at 7:30 pm.
The 2016-17 NWHL season concludes on Sunday, March 19, when the Isobel Cup Final is played at 6:00 pm at the Tsongas Center at UMass Lowell.