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Wisconsin women’s hockey: five Badgers named to US Olympic team

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Alex Cavallini, Brianna Decker and Hilary Knight will all be looking to win another Olympic gold medal for Team USA.

Ice Hockey - Winter Olympics Day 13
Hilary Knight knows a thing or two about winning gold medals.
Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Team USA has medaled in every Olympic Games since women’s hockey was introduced to the Olympic program in 1998, including two gold medals (1998, 2018), three silver medals (2002, 2010, 2014) and one bronze medal (2006). On Saturday night, Team USA announced the 2022 roster that will head to Beijing to try and win back-to-back golds for the first time in national history.

During the second intermission of the NHL’s Winter Classic at frigid Target Field in Minneapolis, five Wisconsin Badgers (four former, one future) were named to represent their country this February in China.

The five Badgers to make the team are:

  • G Alex Cavallini (Delafield/2018)
  • F Brianna Decker (Dousman/2018, 2014)
  • F Hilary Knight (Sun Valley, Idaho/2018, 2014, 2010)
  • D Caroline Harvey (Salem, N.H.)
  • F Abby Roque (Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.)

In addition to the five players on the team, current UW Director of Operations and Equipment Manager Sis Paulsen, a three-time captain for the Badgers, will serve as an equipment manager for Team USA during the upcoming Olympics.

“We’ve worked through a comprehensive evaluation process that has led us to this 23-player roster,” said head coach Joel Johnson. “This team has great veteran leadership, in combination with an infusion of younger talent. The skill, focus and energy they bring to the ice will serve us well as we head to Beijing with our sights set on bringing home gold.”

Knight will be competing in her fourth Olympic games, looking to add on to her two silver and one gold medal. Knight has also competed on 12 IIIHF World Championship teams and at 12 Four Nations Cups. The 2012 graduate led Wisconsin to two national titles, was a three-time All-American and a top-10 finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award. Knight is the all-time goals leader at Wisconsin with 143, for both men’s and women’s hockey, while her 262 points is the most in UW women’s hockey history and ranks in the top-10 in NCAA women’s hockey history.

You can read about all of the rest of the Badgers right here.

All 23 athletes have either played, currently play or are committed to play NCAA hockey, with the University of Minnesota leading the way with eight representatives. Wisconsin has connection to five athletes, while Boston College has three, Northeastern University two, and one each for Boston University, Clarkson University, Lindenwood University, Ohio State University and University of Minnesota Duluth.

The U.S. opens its gold medal defense at the 2022 Winter Olympics on Thursday, Feb. 3 in a 7:10 a.m. CT game against Finland. Preliminary play concludes on Monday, Feb. 7 in a 10:10 p.m. CT game vs. Canada. Team USA also plays ROC (Russian Olympic Committee) and Switzerland in preliminary play.

The bronze medal game will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 16 in a 6:10 a.m. CT game while the gold medal contest will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 16 at 10:10 p.m. CT.