by Tieja MacLaughlin
Few female hockey players in the world boast a resume that includes as many accolades as long-time U.S. Women’s National Team member Jenny Potter.
Selected in the first round, fourth overall, by the Boston Blades in the 2014 CWHL Draft, Potter has made four Olympic appearances and competed in an incredible 12 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championships.
She medalled at all of them.
Highlighting her decorated career was a gold medal win at the 1998 Olympic Winter Games in Nagano, the first-ever Olympics to feature women’s hockey.
Potter has also received several most valuable player awards, including honours from her alma mater NCAA Division I programs at the University of Minnesota Duluth and the University of Minnesota. She most recently won a league championship with the Minnesota Whitecaps of the Western Women’s Hockey League and also spent a season coaching at Trinity College in Connecticut.
As one of the top players in the game, the 35-year-old veteran forward adds experience and offensive depth to the Blades’ roster.
"We’ll be looking to Jenny for a leadership role for sure," general manager Aronda Kirby said. "She has great experience, obviously great talent, and she’s played at the highest level of the sport for so many years. I think she has a lot to offer for many of the players."
Potter joins an offensive core led by Hilary Knight and U.S. Olympic captain Meghan Duggan.
"I’m looking forward to participating in the CWHL," Potter said. "I’m excited to get out there and play competitive hockey with and against some phenomenal players."
Other additions to the Blades’ line-up include U.S. Olympians Monique Lamoureux and Brianna Decker, who were selected second and third overall, respectively, in this year’s draft.
"As you can see, we have some amazing talent coming in," Kirby said. "With the new players and our existing players, we have an experienced team that brings a lot of talent to the ice."
The Blades are just two seasons removed from capturing the regular season title and being crowned 2013 Clarkson Cup champions.
One-time CWHL Coach of the Year Digit Murphy enters her third season at the helm, and under her leadership the Blades finished the 2013-14 campaign with a 13-10-0 regular season record.
During the post season, the second seeded Blades went undefeated in round robin play, but eventually fell to the Toronto Furies in overtime of the Clarkson Cup Final.
With a wealth of experience and a strong core, the team is poised to be a contender again this year.
"We have a lot to look forward to," Kirby said. "We’re looking to bring the Cup back."
Photo: Jeff Cable/USA Hockey