Former Robert Morris University women’s hockey goaltender Brianne McLaughlin was named to the U.S. women’s national squad that will compete at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
McLaughlin will make her second appearance in the Olympics after being named to the 21-player national roster on Wednesday by USA Hockey during the NHL Winter Classic in Ann Arbor, Mich. She and fellow goaltenders Molly Schaus, who played her college hockey for Boston College, and Jessie Vetter from the University of Wisconsin, are among 11 returning players from previous Olympic teams.
This is McLaughlin’s fifth time competing in a major international event for the U.S. women’s national hockey program. She was a part of the 2011 and 2013 teams that won gold at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Women’s Championships as well as the 2012 team that won silver.
She is set on adding another Olympic medal to her collection after being a member of the silver-winning team from the 2010 games in Vancouver.
The U.S. team, which includes three goaltenders, seven defensemen and 11 forwards, will continue training and competing in the Boston, Mass., area until departing for Sochi on Saturday, Feb. 1. The opening ceremonies are slated for Friday, Feb. 7, with Team USA’s first game taking place on Saturday, Feb. 8 against Finland.
During her playing career at RMU, McLaughlin competed in 120 games for the Colonials from 2005 to 2009. She stopped an NCAA-record 3,809 shots in her career and was a four-time All-College Hockey America honoree. She holds program records in saves with 3,809, saves per game with 31.74 and shutouts with eight. Brianne recorded at least 40 saves in 27 games for the Colonials, and turned away at least 50 shots on eight occasions.
McLaughlin, who is from Sheffield, Ohio, is the only student-athlete from RMU to compete in the Olympic Games. She graduated from Robert Morris in 2011 with a degree in nursing.
Read Matt Gajtka’s report on Penguins defensemen Brooks Orpik and Paul Martin making the U.S. men’s Olympic team.
From The Clipboard: Captains will be named at a later date…The USA Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Team has medaled in all four Olympic appearances. They won the gold medal in 1998, silver medals in 2002 and 2010, and the bronze medal in 2006… Players come from 10 different states, led by Massachusetts with five…Average age of the players named is 23.8 years old… Katey Stone, from Arlington, Mass., was named head coach on June 8, 2012, and will be the first female to serve as head coach of a U.S. Olympic women’s hockey team.