RIVETERS’ CORNINE, PRIDE’S WOHLFEILER NAMED VEDA PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
By Mike Murphy and Jane Norton
An NWHL rookie and a returning player from the league’s first season are the VEDA NWHL Players of the Week: Kendall Cornine of the Riveters and Alyssa Wohlfeiler of the Pride.
“It's a huge honor,” said Wohlfeiler. “It's a testament to how strong our team is – any one of our players can win this on any given weekend. I actually don't think Saturday was our best game. The Riveters came out hard and definitely put the pressure on us in the first period. One of our strengths is that we capitalize on our chances and that helped put us on top on Saturday.”
Cornine's back-to-back two-goal games over the weekend in that loss to Boston and a 3-2 victory over Connecticut made her the league's new leader in goals among newcomers, with nine in her first nine games. Only NWHL veterans McKenna Brand and Mary Parker have buried more goals than the Riveters' rookie center.
“It’s a great feeling to get Player of the Week, but overall I was especially excited that our team got a W,” said Cornine. “We needed some positive momentum after the month break.”
Cornine leads the Riveters in goals and is second on the team in points (10) and shots on goal (41). The Riveters' new sniper is one of only three players in the league this season who has scored at least one goal at even strength, on the power play, and while shorthanded. She is now one goal shy of matching the Riveters franchise record for goals in a season, which is shared by Janine Weber, captain Madison Packer, and current Whale general manager Bray Ketchum.
Cornine, the all-time leading scorer for RIT at the Division I level, signed with the Riveters this summer after the New Jersey native was selected by the team with the sixth overall selection in the 2018 NWHL Draft.
“My experience in the NWHL and with the Riveters has been great this year,” said Cornine. “It’s truly a blessing to play with a great group of girls and continue my hockey career. It’s been awesome to be able to play with my roommates and linemates – Mallory Rushton and Brooke Baker. We connect really well on and off the ice and it contributes to our success as a line.”
Wohlfeiler had a goal and two primary assists for the undefeated Boston Pride in their 8-3 rout of the Riveters on Saturday. That performance was her fifth multi-point game of the season and her third consecutive multi-point game. Wohlfeiler, who played with the Connecticut Whale in the NWHL's inaugural season in 2015-16, has already doubled her production from her first season of NWHL hockey. She now has 15 points in 11 games for the Pride.
The former captain at Northeastern signed with Boston over the summer. Last season, she led EC Bergkamener Bären of the Frauen-Bundesliga in Germany in scoring, with 55 points (29-26-55) in 27 games.
“I've played in a few different countries and a few different leagues, but the NWHL is definitely top-notch,” said Wohlfeiler. “It's so rewarding to see all the fans at every game and see how genuinely excited they are to meet us and talk to us. We really have an amazing staff who work so hard to put us in the best possible position to succeed. I was very excited to come back to the NWHL this season and it definitely has not disappointed.”
Wohlfeiler also acknowledged others in the Pride organization for her continued development.
“I have to give so much credit to my teammates, but especially my linemates – Mary (Parker) and Flukie (Emily Fluke),” she said. “We have been really building on our chemistry together the last several weeks and it makes it a lot of fun to play with them every game. We also have a great defensive core who make our jobs as forwards very easy. Then of course our goaltending tandem helps us play loose because we know if we make a mistake that they will have our backs. Our coaching staff has been amazing. They let us play confidently and creatively. I've been working very closely with our assistant Heath Gordon, and I can't thank him enough for the work he has put in to help me become a better player.”
Photo Credits: Kate Frese, Michelle Jay