ALL PHOTOS BY KIRSTEN BURTON
Hannah Brandt, who scored a goal in each of the Minnesota Whitecaps’ season-opening victories over the Riveters, has been selected as the first VEDA NWHL Player of the Week of 2018-19.
“Congratulations to Hannah on an incredible and inspiring start of the season for her and the Whitecaps,” said NWHL Deputy Commissioner Hayley Moore. “The eyes of the hockey fans of Minnesota were on the launch of their new NWHL team, and while the fans filled TRIA Rink both days, Hannah and the Whitecaps delivered on the ice. Hannah is a very deserving recipient of the VEDA NWHL Player of the Week award.”
In the Whitecaps’ victory Saturday in their historic first game in the NWHL, Brandt gave her team a 2-0 lead early in the second period when she deposited a rebound off a shot from teammate Amanda Boulier. On Sunday, her goal off a pass from Team USA teammate and Whitecaps linemate Kendall Coyne Schofield gave Minnesota a 3-1 lead over the Riveters.
When informed that she was the VEDA NWHL Player of the Week, the humble Brandt was appreciative, but made it clear the spotlight should be shared equally by the Whitecaps players, coaches, staff and fans.
“It was fun to be back playing with Kate Schipper and with Kendall,” said Brandt, a member of the 2018 gold medal-winning U.S. Olympic Team. “We have a lot of speed on our line, so I’m just trying to keep up and I was able to bury a couple of pucks. Nice passes from those guys.
“It was exciting to be playing for the Whitecaps and in the NWHL for the first time, but to have such a successful weekend with our team – in front of the loud home crowds at TRIA Rink – is pretty special. This tops it off.”
Since the Whitecaps do not have any NWHL games next weekend, the VEDA NWHL Player of the Week award will come down to the contestants in the games on Saturday: Connecticut Whale at Buffalo at 1:30, and Riveters at Boston at 7:30.
Stay tuned each Monday for the announcement of the VEDA NWHL Player of the Week.