Photo by David Stluka.
BROOKLYN, NY – Jenny Ryan, the standout defender from the University of Wisconsin selected by the Riveters ninth overall in the 2016 NWHL Draft, has signed with the team for the 2017-18 season. Last season, Ryan was named Second Team All-American by the American Hockey Coaches Association.
“It was a huge honor to be drafted by the Riveters, and I am very excited to continue my hockey career as a professional,” said Ryan, 22 and a native of Victor, NY. “Hockey has been a big part of my life for as long as I can remember, so I’m grateful for the opportunity that the NWHL presents. I’ve heard great things about the team and the coaching staff, so I couldn’t be happier.”
Ryan played 155 games with the Badgers between 2013-2017 and had 19 goals and 65 assists for 84 points. As a senior, she was First Team All-WCHA and was a WCHA Scholar-Athlete in her last three seasons. With the Riveters, she will be reunited with her former Wisconsin teammate Courtney Burke, who re-signed with the team yesterday.
“Courtney is an unbelievable player, even better friend and an amazing role model,” said Ryan. “She is really fun to watch play and even more fun to play with, because she is so creative and sees the ice really well.”
As for her alma mater, Ryan said, “Playing at Wisconsin was a dream come true and I would not take the experience back for anything. The coaches truly cared about me as a player. The friendships I made with my teammates will last a lifetime and I cannot imagine my life without them. From the Badgers atmosphere to the facilities, to the coaching staff and to the team, I could not have asked for a better college experience and I will miss it very much.”
At Wisconsin, Ryan was a Kinesiology major. While playing for the Riveters, she hopes to work in a clinical or research setting before applying to medical school or studying to become a physician’s assistant.
As a member of the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team in 2013, she won a silver medal at the Under-18 Women’s World Championship. In 2015, the 5-5 defender was a member of the U.S. Women's Under-22 Select Team in its series against Canada.
Growing up, Ryan played boys’ hockey with the Perinton Blades and later the Rochester Americans. After a few years in the Rochester Edge girls’ program, she left New York to attend the North American Hockey Academy in Stowe, VT.
“I am the only person in my family to have played hockey,” said Ryan. “My parents picked up the ‘Hockey for Dummies’ book when I decided to pursue the sport. They learned with me and have been extremely supportive ever since then.”