This Week in Women’s D-I: January 29, 2010

By chance is Tae Kwan part of your training regimen?

If not, you might consider giving it a whirl. After all, it hasn’t hurt Carolyne Prevost any.

In fact, Wisconsin’s sophomore forward credits that Korean martial art – which is loosely analogous to kick boxing – with helping her become a better hockey player.

Not that she is lifting an angry skate blade toward an opposing d-man’s face or anything like that. However, Prevost said, there are plenty of other transferable concepts between the two sports.

“I think it’s really helped my game a lot,” said Prevost, who hails from Sarnia, Ontario. “Especially my agility.”

Even more than the physical demands, Prevost said that the mental discipline required for Tae Kwan Do is the same approach she needs to prepare for a Badgers’ game.

“I think that’s one of the biggest things I take away from the sport,” said Prevost, who is a fourth degree black belt, “is the mental aspect. Any kind of martial art, or fighting sport, there’s always a mentality going into it. The preparing and the training. I think that carries over into preparing for important hockey games. I take the skills from Tae Kwan Do and carry it over into hockey.”

So far, she hasn’t lost a thing in translation.

In fact, she’s been one of the hottest point producers in the WCHA of late, with seven goals and 10 assists this season heading into this weekend’s series with Ohio State, most of which she’s piled up since the mid-season break.
Prevost, who is one of five daughters (including two sets of twins) born to Normand and Giselle Prevost, is coming off her first career hat trick, which she registered against St. Cloud State.

She credits the boost gained from her appearance with Canada’s U-22 team in the MLP Cup tournament, staged in Germany during the holidays, for putting extra glide to her skating stride.

“I think that’s been the biggest difference in my confidence,” said Prevost, who had to shake off the effects of a high ankle sprain suffered last summer. “After getting the call from the U-22 team, that just brought my confidence back up. I think that shows more in my game.”

Next week, the defending National Champion Badgers will take part in the outdoor Camp Randall Classic against WCHA newbies Bemidji State, to be held within Wisconsin’s historic football stadium. Prevost said she’s excited about taking part in the second womens’ collegiate outdoor game [following the UNH/Northeastern Frozen Fenway battle on Jan. 8].

“I think it’s unbelievable that we have the opportunity to do this,” she said. “We’re excited about practicing all next week outdoors. Growing up, a lot of people have played pond hockey. I never really did. But you see the NHL doing it, and it’s a different kind of atmosphere.”

Even so, to Prevost and the rest of the Badgers, the two points at stake are more important than the novelty of the event. Having lost four of their last six starts heading into the weekend, the No. 10 Badgers can ill afford to get caught up in the hoopla … especially with the Beavers nipping at their heels in the WCHA standings.

“Honestly,” Prevost said, “we’ll be enjoying the experience of the game. But at the end of the day, those will be two points that we really need in our standings. We need to get a win. It might be a great outdoor game, but we’re there to win it. We’re going to go out hard and do what we can.”

The Camp Randall Classic is not the only special event looming on the womens’ hockey calendar. The Women’s Beanpot will be held on the next two Tuesdays at Harvard’s Bright Center (a.k.a the coldest indoor arena this side of Pluto).
No. 6 Northeastern will face BU in this Tuesday’s opener, followed by BC and No. 7 Harvard in the nightcap.

Two-fers. Gotta love ’em.


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