St. Lawrence, Minnesota, Wisconsin lead top 10 finalists for 2017 Patty Kazmaier Award

Cayley Mercer (Clarkson - 18). (Shelley M. Szwast)
Clarkson’s Cayley Mercer is a top-10 finalist for the 2017 Patty Kazmaier Award (photo: Shelley M. Szwast).

The USA Hockey Foundation on Thursday announced the top 10 finalists for the 2017 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award.

The honor is bestowed annually upon the top player in NCAA Division I women’s hockey, and this year will be unveiled at a brunch ceremony at Foundry Arts Centre in St. Charles, Mo., on Saturday, March 18, as part of the NCAA Women’s Frozen Four weekend hosted by Lindenwood University.

The top 10 finalists include: senior goaltender Ann-Renee Desbiens (Wisconsin), junior defenseman Megan Keller (Boston College), senior defenseman Kelsey Koelzer (Princeton), junior forward Kennedy Marchment (St. Lawrence), senior forward Cayley Mercer (Clarkson), junior forward Annie Pankowski (Wisconsin), junior forward Kelly Pannek (Minnesota), sophomore forward Sarah Potomak (Minnesota), senior forward Lara Stalder (Minnesota Duluth) and senior forward Brooke Webster (St. Lawrence).

The selection process commenced earlier this month when NCAA Division I women’s hockey coaches were asked to nominate players for the award. Players who were nominated by multiple coaches were then placed on an official ballot, which was sent back to the coaches to vote for the top 10 finalists.

The independent accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLP, tabulated the ballots.

The three finalists, including the recipient of the 2017 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award, will be chosen by a 13-person selection committee made up of NCAA Division I women’s hockey coaches, representatives of print and broadcast media, an at-large member and a representative of USA Hockey.

The top three finalists will be announced on Thursday, March 2.