Four players who could have been part of the University of Wisconsin women's hockey team's chase of a third straight NCAA championship this season will instead seek a spot on the U.S. Olympic team.
Forwards Britta Curl and Lacey Eden and defenders Natalie Buchbinder and Caroline Harvey were announced Friday as being among 27 players picked for the USA Hockey residency program that will begin in October.
In all, eight current or former Badgers players are in the group, tied with Minnesota for the most. Goaltender Alex Cavallini and forwards Brianna Decker, Hilary Knight and Abby Roque were the UW alums picked for the residency program that will be based in Blaine, Minnesota.
The selection of Curl, Eden, Buchbinder and Harvey gives some more clarity to how the two-time defending NCAA champion's roster will look when the season begins in September. Decisions for some of last year's seniors who could use an extra year of eligibility, however, haven't been finalized.
Leading forward and 2021 NCAA championship game overtime goal-scorer Daryl Watts wasn't selected for Canada's Olympic centralization and said she's planning to return to UW for 2021-22. Center Brette Pettet and goaltender Kennedy Blair also said they intend to be back with the Badgers.
Not having Curl and Eden will take some punch out of the UW lineup. Curl has 45 goals in 98 career games in three seasons for the Badgers and has been part of the top two lines consistently.
Eden burst onto the scene in January after joining the team for the second semester; she was originally planning to play at Princeton but the Tigers didn't have a season because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
She was fourth on the team with eight goals despite playing in only 15 of 21 games. Her overtime score against Ohio State on March 7 won the Western Collegiate Hockey Association playoff championship.
UW is still scheduled to have seven defensemen on the roster despite losing Buchbinder, a fifth-year senior, and 18-year-old incoming freshman Harvey, the youngest player picked for U.S. residency. That's if Grace Bowlby returns for a fifth season.
The Badgers added Kendra Nealey as a transfer from Cornell and incoming freshman Sophie Helgeson to the defense in the offseason.
Cavallini, Decker and Knight were on the 2018 U.S. Olympic team that won the gold medal. Roque finished her Badgers career in 2020 and has impressed in international play.
Madison native and 2018 Olympian Amanda Kessel also was selected for the residency program, which includes seven players who were in NCAA hockey last season.
USA Hockey said it will pick 25 of the 27 centralized players for the World Championship that was rescheduled for Aug. 21-30 in Calgary, Alberta.
A final 23-player Olympic roster is expected to be named in late December or early January.
Look back on State Journal coverage of Badgers women's hockey games in the 2020-21 season
Read stories from University of Wisconsin women's hockey games in the 2020-21 season.
Daryl Watts scored 3:16 into overtime to beat Northeastern in the Frozen Four championship game, giving the Badgers a sixth NCAA title.
The Badgers' third line of Caitlin Schneider, Casey O'Brien and Makenna Webster produces three goals and Kennedy Blair makes 37 saves.
The Badgers earned a shutout in the NCAA quarterfinals for the fifth straight season.
Eden scored 42 seconds into overtime as the Badgers defeated Ohio State.
Minnesota twice pulls within one goal in the third period, but UW holds on in the WCHA Final Faceoff semifinals.
The Badgers won their fifth WCHA regular-season title in the last six years with a frantic finish at Minnesota Duluth.
Gabbie Hughes scored twice for the seventh-ranked Bulldogs, who can pass the Badgers for the crown with another victory Saturday.
It was the 11th multiple-goal game with the Badgers for Sophie Shirley but just the first for her younger sister.
Kennedy Blair made 12 saves for her fourth shutout of the season, and four players scored goals in the University of Wisconsin women’s hockey team’s 4-0 victory against Bemidji State at LaBahn Arena.
A day after No. 1 UW rallied for an overtime victory, No. 2 Minnesota earned a split of six points in the series by fighting back for a 2-2 tie and a shootout win.
Daryl Watts' NCAA-leading 13th goal of the season and second of the game on a 3-on-1 rush finished off a comeback from a two-goal deficit in the third period.
A day after winning 10-0, the Badgers didn't lead Saturday until the final two minutes.
The Badgers have won 26 straight games against the Huskies.
The Badgers broke out of a scoring funk with an unprecedented offensive showing against their archrivals.
Five players scored and Kennedy Blair made 30 saves as the Badgers erased some of the bad taste from last week's split with Ohio State.
Coach Mark Johnson said the Badgers "didn't do a very good job with the puck" in losing to the Buckeyes.
Daryl Watts and Nicole LaMantia score in the final period, and UW gets 28 saves from Kennedy Blair.
Badgers goalie Kennedy Blair made 11 of her 21 saves in the third period as she shut out an opponent for the second time in four games this season.
Daryl Watts scored on the power play with 3:15 remaining as the top-ranked Badgers defeated Minnesota State.
Junior Sophie Shirley becomes 18th player in program history to reach 50 career goals.
Sloppiness in the defensive zone led to the Badgers falling behind, coach Mark Johnson said.