BUFFALO, N.Y. — The NWHL announced that Buffalo Beauts defenseman Blake Bolden has been named the NWHL’s Defender of the Year. This award is voted on by 20 media members and broadcasters in cooperation with the Women’s Hockey Media Association.
Boldenfinishedher third NWHL season with career-high totals in assists (12) and points (13). Her point total led all full-time NWHL defenders and tied for 12th-most among all skaters. Her offensive output in several categories ranked her among the top skaters in the league, including finishes in the top 10 among all NWHL players in assists (2nd, 13) and shots on goal (T-9th, 47).
Defensively, Bolden’s 11 blocked shots tied for third-most in the league and her plus-11 rating tied teammate Emily Pfalzer for third-best among NWHL blueliners. Despite playing regular minutes in all 16 of the Beauts’ games, her four penalty minutes tied as the second-fewest by a defenseman who played at least 14 games this season.
A native of Euclid, Ohio, Bolden appeared in her second career NWHL All-Star Game in Nashville in February and won the hardest shot competition for the second time. She was also a co-recipient of the NWHL Player of the Week award for the week ending Feb. 3 after recording two assists in a 3-2 road win against the Metropolitan Riveters.