Pride Preview: for Boston's Opener, Krizova to Play with Brand and Pelkey

October 12, 2018 - National Women's Hockey League (NWHL) - Boston Pride News Release

Let's be blunt about Boston, as the Pride get set for their home opener against the Riveters on Saturday at Warrior Ice Arena (get your $20 tickets HERE): If their two rookie forwards develop as superbly as expected, Boston's three lines will be stacked.

Those two NWHL rookies are former Northeastern teammates Denisa Krizova and McKenna Brand, who were linemates the last two years. With Krizova on right wing and Brand at center, who's joining them on the left?

None other than U.S. Olympic gold medalist Amanda Pelkey.

"It's pretty amazing," said Krizova, who was the 13th overall selection in the 2017 NWHL Draft. "McKenna and I have strong chemistry and I think we're good players who've had some success, and now we got Amanda Pelkey on our line and she's a lot faster and better than us."

Krizova laughed. On the eve of her professional debut, the native of the Czech Republic is having the time of her life. Working in sales during the day, her focus turns to hockey at night. She joined Boston this season with two hopes: winning the Isobel Cup and making another giant leap in her game so she's ready when the Czech Republic National Team calls her name again. By the end of training camp, she knew she came to the right place.

Let's be blunt about Boston, as the Pride get set for their home opener against the Riveters on Saturday at Warrior Ice Arena (get your $20 tickets HERE): If their two rookie forwards develop as superbly as expected, Boston's three lines will be stacked.

Those two NWHL rookies are former Northeastern teammates Denisa Krizova and McKenna Brand, who were linemates the last two years. With Krizova on right wing and Brand at center, who's joining them on the left?

None other than U.S. Olympic gold medalist Amanda Pelkey.

"Being in the NWHL and on the Pride has already made me a better player," said Krizova. "You can't help it, when you're surrounded by so many great players and you see the competition you'll face in every game. From the first practice, our pace was unbelievable and the veterans like Jillian Dempsey were really encouraging me, pushing me to be my best. We have so many strong players, there's a lot of competition for spots in the lineup."

First-year Pride head coach Paul Mara and assistant Marissa Gedman certainly had plenty of talent to choose from in selecting the opening night roster for Saturday against the Riveters. Here's the projected lineup:

Amanda Pelkey - McKenna Brand - Denisa Krizova

Gigi Marvin - Dana Trivigno - Haley Skarupa

Emily Field - Jillian Dempsey - Jordan Smelker

Alyssa Gagliardi - Toni Ann Miano

Lauren Kelly - Lexi Bender

Kaleigh Fratkin - Mallory Souliotis

Katie Burt

Brittany Ott

That's a lineup packed with recent college stars and players with U.S. National Team experience - including 2018 Olympians Pelkey, Gigi Marvin and Haley Skarupa.

As for Krizova, she has been counting down the hours to the 7:30 p.n. ET opening faceoff on Saturday night in Boston.

"I'm nervous and excited," she said. "I've played hockey my whole life and dreamed of playing professionally. Now here I am, surrounded on the Pride by amazing players who also happen to be really nice people. Our game will start live on YouTube when it's 1:30 in the morning in the Czech Republic, but I know my family will be watching."

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