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Notable names and snubs on the CWHL All-Star roster

As the league prepares for the 2017 All-Star Game, we take a closer look at the players chosen to compete

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Photo Credit: Chris Tanouye

The CWHL recently released the list of 32 players set to compete in the All-Star Game, taking place at the Air Canada Centre on Saturday, February 11, 2017. While there are still two more names to be released before the final roster is confirmed, we wanted to take a closer look at some of the highlights and omissions from the list so far.

2017 CWHL All-Star Game Roster:

Goaltenders

  • Erica Howe (Ottawa, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Emerance Maschmeyer (Bruderheim, AB/Calgary Inferno)
  • Charline Labonte (Boisbriand, Que./Les Canadiennes de Montreal)
  • Christina Kessler (Toronto, Ont./Toronto Furies)

Defense

  • Tara Watchorn (Newcastle, Ont./Boston Blades)
  • Jocelyne Larocque (Ste. Anne, MB/Brampton Thunder)
  • Courtney Birchard (Etobicoke, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Laura Fortino (Hamilton, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Meaghan Mikkelson (Regina, SK/Calgary Inferno)
  • Katelyn Gosling (London, Ont./Calgary Inferno)
  • Lauriane Rougeau (Pointe-Claire, Que./Les Canadiennes de Montreal)
  • Cassandra Poudrier (Terrebonne, Que./Les Canadiennes de Montreal)
  • Erin Ambrose (Keswick, Ont./Toronto Furies)
  • Carlee Campbell (Oakville, Ont./Toronto Furies)
  • Renata Fast (Burlington, Ont./Toronto Furies)

Forwards

  • Kayla Tutino (Montreal, Que./Boston Blades)
  • Meghan Grieves (Cary, N.C./Boston Blades)
  • Jess Jones (Picton, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Laura Stacey (Kleinburg, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Rebecca Vint (Caledon, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Jamie Lee Rattray (Kanata, Ont./Brampton Thunder)
  • Brianne Jenner (Oakville, Ont./Calgary Inferno)
  • Jill Saulnier (Halifax, NS/Calgary Inferno)
  • Haley Irwin (Thunder Bay, Ont./Calgary Inferno)
  • Rebecca Johnston (Sudbury, Ont./Calgary Inferno)
  • Marie-Philip Poulin (Beauceville, Que./Les Canadiennes de Montreal)
  • Ann-Sophie Bettez (Sept-Iles, Que./Les Canadiennes de Montreal)
  • Sarah Lefort (Ormstown, Que./Les Canadiennes de Montreal)
  • Natalie Spooner (Scarborough, Ont./Toronto Furies)
  • Jenelle Kohanchuk (Winnipeg, MB/Toronto Furies)
  • Kelly Terry (Whitby, Ont./Toronto Furies)
  • Michela Cava (Thunder Bay, Ont./Toronto Furies)

Highlights

Although it doesn’t come as much of a shock, rookie goaltender Emerance Maschmeyer certainly stands out on this list. The 22-year-old is currently in the middle of her first CWHL season with the Calgary Inferno, and she has made quite the impression so far. With a 3-2 record on the season, Maschmeyer has posted a 1.77 GAA and .941 SV%, all while helping her team reach first overall in the league. Sharing time with Delayne Brian, and Genevieve Lacasse, Maschmeyer is one third of quite possibly the best goalie group in the league. While choosing just one of these goalies to represent Calgary in the All-Star Game was no easy task, it’s safe to say the league is in good hands with their decision.

If Maschmeyer is considered the future of Team Canada’s goaltending, Charline Labonte is certainly a key part of the present. She’ll appear in the All-Star Game for Les Canadiennes, also not surprising too many people. Labonte currently sits with a 7-2 record, 1.77 GAA and .920 SV% while her team goes back and forth with Calgary for the league’s top spot. She’ll bring a solid veteran presence to the All-Star line up, as Maschmeyer has already admitted she views Labonte as a role model (and Labonte is a big Maschmeyer supporter herself).

While the defense features well-known names like Brampton’s Laura Fortino and Calgary’s Meaghan Mikkelson, the real story on defense is the number of rookies named to the roster. Cassandra Poudrier, drafted 10th overall by Les Canadiennes in 2016, was a pleasant surprise. Coming into the 2016-17 season with some heavy expectations, Poudrier has taken some time to adjust to the league. But with six points in 14 games, she has proven to be a contributing member of Montreal’s blue line.

Other rookies among the defence include Toronto’s Renata Fast, Carlee Campbell and Erin Ambrose, as well as Calgary’s Katelyn Gosling. Campbell currently sits fourth overall in defense scoring, with eight points in 16 games. Gosling is just one spot behind her, registering seven points in 13 games. In total, five rookie defenders were named to the All-Star Game roster.

The forward line up features, not surprisingly, some familiar names. Stars like Marie-Philip Poulin, Natalie Spooner and Brianne Jenner will all be in Toronto on February 11. Poulin continues her successful campaign with 19 points (9G, 10A) in 13 games, sitting third overall in league scoring.

Rookies Laura Stacey (Brampton), Michela Cava (Toronto) and Sarah Lefort (Montreal) will all make their All-Star Game debuts this year. Sitting top three in rookie scoring, respectively, it comes as no surprise that these young stars were included in the list.

Omissions

While there are still two players set to be confirmed to the roster in the coming days, there are some notable absences on the list so far. Cathy Chartrand (Montreal) currently leads the league in defense scoring with 13 points (1G, 12A) in 14 games, and yet her name is nowhere to be found.

Caroline Ouellette is also absent from the list, despite leading the league in overall scoring (23 points in 14 games) and setting a new record for CWHL scoring, becoming the first player to hit 300 points in her career. According the Habs Eye on the Prize, there is a Quebec Pee-Wee tournament from February 8 to 19, which could explain why she has not confirmed to play yet. She also may be one of the two players set to be confirmed later.

Voting and Tickets

Fans will be able to vote for team captains beginning January 11. The captains will then choose their roster for the game.

You can pick up tickets for the All-Star Game here, and watch the best of the best in the CWHL at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto on February 11, 2017.