FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: New York, NY – July 2, 2015: The NWHL (National Women’s Hockey League) is excited to announce the signing of four new players: Brianne McLaughlin, Jillian Dempsey, Blake Bolden, and Alyssa Gagliardi.
The Buffalo Beauts signed their first player, two-time Olympic Silver medalist and goalie Brianne McLaughlin, on July 1st. McLaughlin graduated from Robert Morris University in 2009 where she spent four years playing for the Colonials. She set an NCAA record of 3,809 career saves over her collegiate career and later competed in three IIHF Women’s World Championship tournaments, helping the US win over Canada in both 2011 and 2013. As a member of the US Women’s National Team in 2013-2014, McLaughlin was a part of a three-goaltender rotation during the 2014 Four Nations Cup.
“Buffalo has a tradition of strong goalies between the pipes. Hasek and Miller put the Sabres on the radar in the NHL and now I think McLaughlin will continue such a tradition of great net-minders for the Beauts and the NWHL,” General Manager of the Beauts Linda Mroz said on signing McLaughlin.
The Boston Pride signed three players, including defensemen Alyssa Gagliardi and Blake Bolden and forward Jillian Dempsey.
Alyssa Gagliardi is a recent Cornell grad who played for the CWHL Boston Blades. During her time at Cornell, she was awarded First Team All-Ivy and First Team All-USCHO. Gagliardi currently holds the school record for games played with 138 and finished her time at Cornell with 89 points (19 goals, 70 assists) and 158 blocks. In 2014, Gagliardi played for the 2015 US Women’s Under-22 Select Team.
During her time at Boston College, Blake Bolden was named captain in her senior season from 2012-2013. She was also awarded the Athletic Director’s Award for Academic Achievement, Second Team All-American, First Team Hockey East All-Star, New England All-Star, and Hockey East Defenseman of the Year. She also competed in 2008 and 2009 for Team USA in the Under-18 World Championship Team and won gold both times. In 2013, Bolden was the first-ever African American selected in the first round of the CWHL draft.
Jillian Dempsey was a member of the Harvard Crimson hockey team from 2009-2013. During her time at Harvard, Dempsey was First Team All-ECAC, First Team All-Ivy choice, and a two-time nominee of the Patty Kazmaier Award. She finished ninth in Harvard history in career points with 148 points. In August 2013, Dempsey was selected as the 10th overall pick by the Boston Blades in the 2013 CWHL Draft.
“This is such an exciting time for us in Boston. We are lucky to have signed Alyssa, Blake, and Jill today. Each player brings a unique skill set that adds depth to our roster. They are phenomenal hockey players, and standout women that all young girls can look up to,” said Boston Pride general manager Hayley Moore on these three additions to her team.