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Kelsey Koelzer (Princeton Athletics)

Kelsey Koelzer (Princeton Athletics)

The New York Riveters announced on Tuesday that they have signed 2016 National Women’s hockey League first overall selection, Kelsey Koelzer.

Koelzer, who just completed her collegiate career at Princeton University, will join the Riveters for the final home game and their run to the 2017 Isobel Cup. She will join her teammates at practice at the Barnabas Health Hockey House in Newark, New Jersey on Tuesday night.

Koelzer said, “Being part of the NWHL was a priority for me because I wanted to take my development from four years at Princeton and utilize it playing with and against some of the best women’s hockey players in the world.”

She added, “I am sad that my collegiate career has come to an end, but I am lucky to have played alongside amazing players and coaches. I am hoping to use that experience to contribute to the remainder of the Riveters’ season in any way I can.”

Koelzer was one of the ten finalists for the Patty Kazmaier Award, presented to the best player in women’s college hockey, by the USA Hockey Foundation.

The five-foot-nine defenseman, put up 39 goals and 61 assists in 128 games over her four years at the Ivy League school. Prior to attending Princeton, she was a member of the New Jersey Rockets.

Riveters general manager and head coach, Chad Wiseman said, “After drafting her last year and closely following her outstanding senior season, we are ecstatic to have Kelsey begin her Riveters career today. She is a dynamic defender who will make us a better team.”

The Riveters regular season finale is Sunday, March 12 at 4:00 PM as they host the Boston Pride at the Barnabas Health Hockey House. New York will also host their semi-final game on Friday, March 17 at 7:30 PM.

The 2016-2017 NWHL season will conclude on Sunday, March 19, with Isobel Cup Final at the Paul E. Tsongas Center at UMass-Lowell. Faceoff is scheduled for 6:00 PM.

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