Photo By Michael Hetzel
With a goal and assist in the Beauts’ 6-2 victory in Boston on Sunday, Buffalo rookie forward Maddie Elia has been named the NWHL Player of the Week.
“Hayley [Scamurra], Kourtney [Kunichika] and I have been playing really well, so I have to acknowledge our entire line,” said Elia. “We’re really bearing down and getting the gritty goals, which are just as important as the pretty ones.”
The Beauts, the defending Isobel Cup champions, are arguably an even better team this season thanks to the addition of outstanding first-year players like Elia. After completing the final three games of the regular season – all on the road – Buffalo will host its first-ever NWHL playoff game when the Beauts play a semifinal on Saturday, March 17 at 5:30 p.m. at HarborCenter.
If they play as they did in Boston, you have to like their chances of returning to the Isobel Cup Final. On Sunday, the club took a 4-0 lead into the first intermission.
“It was a good road win for us,” said Elia. “We’ve been comfortable at home for a few weeks now, so it was nice to be on the road and keep the momentum building. The offense generated a lot, which is important. It’s good to see things clicking as well as they are this late in the season.”
For the season, Elia has 4 goals and 7 assists for 11 points in 12 twelve games. Elia and Scamurra are tied for second on the team in scoring, behind Kunichika and her 12 points.
“I’m looking forward to the rest of the season and to continuing our hard-working style of hockey,” said Elia.
Elia was selected selected18th overall in the 2016 NWHL Draft and signed with the hometown Beauts in August. A 5-10 forward, Elia graduated Boston University last spring with a degree in Communications. In her senior season, she had 12 goals and 24 assists for 36 points in 32 games and was selected to the Hockey East All-Academic Team. Over her four-year career at BU, Elia was 47-65-112 in 145 games.