Plattsburgh, NY — Ashley Ryan ’15 of the Elmira College women’s ice hockey team has received numerous honors throughout her collegiate hockey career and tonight she added to her long list of accomplishments by being named the winner of the 2015 Laura Hurd Award, given by the American Hockey Coaches Association (AHCA) to the NCAA Division III Women’s Ice Hockey Player of the Year.
Ryan becomes just the third player in Elmira College history to take home the National Player of the Year Award, the other two being the late great Laura Hurd ’05, who the award is named after, and Kayla Coady ’09. All three award winners claimed the nation’s top honor in their senior year with the Soaring Eagles.
“It’s an amazing feeling to win this award” said Ryan. “It’s great to be in the same group as a Laura Hurd and a Kayla Coady. It’s great for our school and just overall an amazing feeling but I give all the credit to my teammates, coaches, family, and everyone who supported me throughout the years, alumni, everyone, I just can’t thank you all enough.”
Making tonight’s Player of the Year award even more special, not just to Ryan, but the Elmira College community and college hockey world, was that today would have been Laura Hurd’s 33rd birthday. In attendance tonight was Laura’s mother Jennifer and brother Steven.
“It was awesome to have them there” Ryan said. “It’s an amazing feeling, all the support the Hurd family has given us and everything Laura has done for us. It has definitely left a big impact on our program.”
Ryan, a two-time AHCA First Team All-American and the 2015 ECAC West Conference Player of the Year, has had one of the most prolific seasons in EC history this year. She has amassed 59 points in her senior season on 18 goals and an Elmira College record-tying 41 assists.
Her 59 points are the most in NCAA Division III Women’s Ice Hockey this season and are the second-highest total by an Elmira player in program history, second only to Laura Hurd. Ryan’s 41 assists are also tops in the country and one shy of tying the NCAA single-season record for assists.
Career-wise, Ryan will most certainly go down in the history books as one of the best to don the Purple and Gold. Her 156 career points are third most in program history, only behind her fellow National Players of the Year Laura Hurd and Kayla Coady. Ryan’s 60 goals are fourth in EC history and her 96 assists are third but only four away from moving into a two-way tie for second.
Ryan will look to lead Elmira to their fourth NCAA Division III Women’s Ice Hockey National Championship in program history, which begins with a semifinal matchup against No. 3 University of Wisconsin-River Falls tomorrow, March 20th at 7:00 p.m. at the Stafford Ice Arena in Plattsburgh, NY. Tickets prices are $15 for adults and $10 for students.