Photo By Michael Hetzel
Buffalo Beauts rookie forward Kaylyn Schroka, who scored the overtime goal in her team’s 3-2 win over Boston on Saturday, has been named the NWHL Player of the Week.
“Wow! I’m thankful for that," Schroka wrote in an email this morning. “Thank you to my team for making this possible. They are the ones that push me to be focused and work hard/smart every shift. We had a great game versus Boston. It was a perfect way to start out the new year and the relationship with our club’s new owners in PSE.”
Schroka also had an assist in the win, which propelled the Beauts into sole possession of second place in the NWHL. In 8 games this season, she has 2 goals and 4 assists.
“Kaylyn has played as advertised – her style of play is a coach’s dream,” said Buffalo co-coach Craig Muni. “She’s a hard worker, plays all three zones, can play PP and PK. She’s determined and wants to get better and become a leader. We've had Kaylyn play with multiple linemates and she just keeps producing. We have a saying – play so well that we can't afford to take you out of the lineup. This is how Kaylyn has been playing”!
Schroka signed with the Beauts last summer, along with Adrian College linemates Kristin Lewicki and Sarah Shureb. As seniors last season, the line of Lewicki, Schroka and Shureb combined for 187 points on 86 goals and 101 assists. Over four years at Adrian, Schroka was 69-80-149 in 111 games. A native of Michigan, she developed as a player in the Little Caesars youth hockey program.
At the mid-way mark of the NWHL’s regular season, Schroka is cherishing her experience in the league and has praise for how the Beauts – a team with many new faces – has come together this season. She said Buffalo’s win on Saturday was her team’s best all-around performance of the season.
“We started connecting on the ice and making plays, working hard in the offensive zone, and being aggressive in our defensive zone,” said Schroka. “Everyone was buzzing and it was good energy to feed off. Going into OT, I knew we had a good three periods. I felt if we kept that energy up, we’d come out with the W and that’s exactly what happened. We played to the final buzzer.”