The Boston Pride have had Katie Burt in their plans for quite some time — she was the team’s first overall pick in the 2017 Draft — but the 21-year-old goalie only decided that she wanted to go pro about a month ago. And who can blame her? She’s been busy stopping pucks, setting records, and turning heads at Boston College since she was 17.
“Throughout the year, throughout my senior season at BC, I wasn’t trying to think ahead too much,” Burt told The Ice Garden. “I was just trying to focus on whatever we had that day or that week. You know, what can I do at practice to get better? What can I do to help my team win games?”
Burt is self-effacing and doesn’t carry any superstitions with her like many other goalies do. And even in late June in the middle of a late phone interview it’s easy to pick up on her competitive nature. She talked about taking her first real break in a long time, offseason training, working on her game, and winning. Because Katie Burt likes to win.
In the last four years, the Lynn, Mass., native helped the Eagles win a lot of games. She had three 30-win seasons for Boston College and finished her collegiate career with the NCAA record for wins. Her career numbers are downright epic: a .937 save percentage, a 1.47 GAA, and a record of 121-15-10. But despite all of her accolades, Burt believes that she has a lot of room to grow as a player. She also believes that the NWHL is the right place for her to do it.
“Playing in the NWHL is the best place for me,” Burt explained. “I can stay close to home, train where I’ve always trained and have that sense of familiarity — but also I can take that leap forward and try to develop my game in the best way that I can.”
Burt’s goal is to play for the U.S. women’s senior national team. She’s had stints with the U18 team, including a silver in 2014 and gold in 2015 at the U18 World Championships. Then, last season, Burt saw fellow BC alumna Haley Skarupa leave the Pride to join the U.S. national team. A few months later Skarupa had a gold medal around her neck.
Before Burt gets to the national team she will have to prove herself in the national ranks. It’s a challenge that she’s looking forward to, especially if it involves some friendly competition with her friend Brittany Ott.
“I’m expecting Otter to be back, but I haven’t heard anything yet,” Burt shared with The Ice Garden. “I’m not expecting to play right away. Otter is a great goalie and has really proved herself in the NWHL and I have a tall task ahead of me if I want to start some games. The goaltending for Boston since the inaugural season has been fantastic. Hopefully I can add to that.”
If Burt does enter training camp as the favorite to be the Pride’s starting goaltender, she will be ready for the role. Last season, no goalie saw more shots and made more saves than she did. She played over 2,000 minutes in all four of her seasons at BC, including 2,062 minutes as a 17-year-old freshman in the 2014-15 season. Needless to say, Burt has already proven herself as a workhorse goaltender.
Whether she’s the Pride’s starter, in a goalie platoon with Ott, or an understudy of the three-time All-Star, Burt will be ready. She expects Boston to be a great team and wants to be a part of the equation that gets the Pride back to the Isobel Cup Final. She’s hungry to test herself and hone her skills in a league that is fast becoming a proving ground for players with dreams of playing for the U.S. women’s national team.