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Leone earns Rookie of the Week honors
For the majority of this women’s hockey season, no ECAC defender had earned the Rookie of the Week honor. That changed last week as Quinnipiac freshman defender Nicolette Leone became the third Bobcat player to earn the accolade.
Leone recorded four points by assisting on four Bobcat goals during the team’s weekend sweep over Robert Morris. Quinnipiac earned wins by respective scores of 4-3 and 4-2 in back to back home games.
“We just went out and played hard this weekend,” Leone said. “I’m glad to get the four points, and to be Rookie of the Week is pretty amazing, it’s really an honor”.
Leone is part of a recruiting class that has played a key part in making Quinnipiac’s inaugural season in the ECACHL successful. Fellow freshman Antoinette Maldonado and Hayley McMeekin have also earned the ECAC Rookie of the Week honor. In addition to this, freshman Kristin Emerick was named to the ECAC honor roll this past week.
Leone, who is originally from Trenton, Ontario, has contributed to the Bobcats efforts this season with a goal and seven assists. While making the transition to Division I hockey is never easy, Leone’s past experiences have helped her greatly.
Leone has spent 14 years playing hockey. She has patrolled the ice with Olympic athletes and also won a silver medal at the Ontario Winter Games.
Devotion to a Division I sport requires a great deal of time above and beyond the normal strains on a college freshman. Leone stresses time management as a key to managing her workload and maintains that she wouldn’t prefer to be doing anything else.
“If I weren’t here playing hockey, college wouldn’t be as much fun,” Leone said.
Leone hopes to continue to contribute a great deal to the Bobcats’ season. While she has three years of eligibility remaining, Leone emphasizes that the younger players go on the ice mindful of the seniors for whom this is their last season representing Quinnipiac.
Quinnipiac had a week off prior to playing Princeton at home Tuesday. The Bobcats then play at Clarkson and St. Lawrence on the road over the weekend. These games will prove pivotal for the Bobcats as they try to earn a spot in the ECAC playoffs.
The top eight teams in the ECAC qualify for the playoffs. The Bobcats have a record of 3-8-2 and currently hold ninth place.