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Women's Ice Hockey

Eagles to Represent Boston College in Sochi

Alex Carpenter '16

Alex Carpenter '16

Jan. 22, 2014

Written by senior Kristen Scott

Three Boston College Eagles will be representing the United States in women's ice hockey for the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Forward Kelli Stack ('11), goaltender Molly Schaus ('11), and forward Alex Carpenter ('16) debut with Team USA against Finland on Feb. 8. While this will be Stack's and Schaus' second Olympics, Carpenter is making her first Olympic appearance.

Stack, Schaus and Carpenter all got early starts playing hockey. Under the influence of her older brother, Kevin, Stack was in skates by four. Schaus, also taking cues from her brother, began skating on her backyard pond in Minnesota. Carpenter's father played in the NHL for 18 years and her mother was a figure skater, so skating was an inevitable path for her.

"My dad got us going as soon as he could. He told me that girls couldn't play in the NHL. So when I asked what they could do, he told me the Olympics. Ever since then, I made playing in the Olympics one of my goals," Carpenter said.

Stack and Schaus also had Olympic aspirations on their minds after Team USA won the gold medal in 1998, the first year women's ice hockey was included in the Olympics.

"After the '98 Olympics came around, I thought it would be pretty neat if I could play on that team. As I got into college that became more of a reality," Stack said.

Kelli Stack ('11)

At Boston College, Stack, Schaus and Carpenter played for two members of the 1998 gold medal team: Katie King Crowley and Courtney Kennedy. Coaches to all three players and former Olympians themselves, Crowley and Kennedy played instrumental roles in preparing Stack, Schaus and Carpenter for their own Olympic experiences.

"They had a lot of knowledge and were willing to share their experiences with us, Stack said. "They understand what it's like to go through the process of trying to make an Olympic team. Katie and Courtney were just a great support system and they are both very knowledgeable when it comes to the game of hockey. They made it fun and easy to learn and really help me develop into the player I am now."

"When I made the program the first time, [Crowley and Kennedy] showed me the way," Schaus said. "They were so supportive, both when I was at BC and with USA Hockey. It's awesome to share these experiences with them because they're two of the best players in the world. To say that we wore the same jersey as they did is truly an honor."

The three players also talked about their roles on Team USA this year. While Stack and Schaus bring veteran knowledge to the 2014 team, Carpenter provides a burst of fresh talent.

"I've grown up a lot and became a veteran on the team. The first time around, I was awe-struck. Just couldn't really believe I was on the team. Now, it's totally different. I have a different mindset about it," said Stack.

"Having been to Vancouver and having played in a gold-medal game [against Canada in 2010], to be on the losing end of it, our whole team has that extra drive. The intensity is a notch higher this time around. We know what's ahead and we know how difficult it is to win a gold medal, so we keep that in mind every day. We don't want to be on the other side again," Schaus said.

Although each offers a unique skill set, Stack, Schaus and Carpenter share a special relationship through their BC connection.

Molly Schaus ('11)

"It's nice to have teammates who came from BC. [Stack and Schaus] have been so helpful guiding me through my first Olympic experience," Carpenter said.

"[Stack and Carpenter] are unbelievable, world-class players. It's a fun group to be a part of. We're definitely proud to be Eagles," Schaus said.

Stack echoed the thoughts of her teammates and expressed her pride to represent Boston College and everyone who has helped her in her long road to the Olympics.

"We're representing all the people who have come along on our journey and everyone who has touched us in some way. Whether it's our family, teachers or coaches, we carry all of them with us when we're playing and we know we're playing for something bigger than ourselves," said Stack.

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