The University of Rhode Island women’s ice hockey senior class has raised the bar for the hockey program after a huge turnaround season that culminated with an ACHA National Tournament berth. It will surely be tough to replace their leadership, talent and the impact they have had on and off the rink.
Brenna Callahan, Sydney Collins, Alisha DiFilippo and Kristen Levesque were recognized as the 2015-16 ECWHL All-League Selections for First Team defense, First Team Forward, Second Team Forward and Honorable Mention respectively.
“All five seniors have been awesome examples and great leaders on the team,” said Rhode Island head coach Ashley Pagliarini. “They showed all the younger players what is expected in our program and we have a team first saying that we always talk about.”
Sydney Collins, recognized as a First Team All-American Selection for the ACHA, finished her senior year with 28 goals, 21 assists and 49 total points during 30 games played. Collins, known for her toughness and versatility played forward, defense and goalie this season while averaging four points per game and registering five game winning goals this season.
“Sydney is a great example of how hard you need to work on and off the ice to be successful,” Pagliarini said.
Levesque, an Academic All-American, proudly represented Team USA last year at the University games. She is recognized as a great leader, one of the best passers and one of the hardest working players on the team.
“She’s a model student-athlete being able to balance her athletic and academic commitments in her Kinesiology major with a 3.87 overall GPA,” Pagliarini said.
She finished her senior season with 15 goals, 23 assists and 38 total points in 28 games played. Her best performance of the season came during a 7-0 regular season shutout win over Pennsylvania State University on Feb. 20, where she had five total points.
Callahan, who was named an All-American during the 2014 season, is recognized for her commitment to excellence, leadership skills and tireless work ethic.
“Callahan is one of our hardest working players and she is one of the best defense-men in the country,” Pagliarini said. Callahan finished her senior year with seven goals, 22 assists and 29 total points in 30 games played.
DiFilippo, who was an All-American during the 2014 season made second team this season. She finished her last year with 25 goals, 18 assists and 43 total points during 30 games played.
“She’s a really talented kid, a quiet leader who leads by example,” Pagliarini added. She also averaged three points per game and scored six game winning goals this season.
“Everything they brought to our team will definitely be missed every day,” Pagliarini concluded. “It’ll be a hard senior class to replace. I have no doubt in their abilities to take the life lessons learned in the program and be successful in the future. It’s been a pleasure to coach them.”