Riveters re-sign defensive trio

Courtney Burke, Michelle Picard, Jenny Ryan to return to Newark

Today, the Metropolitan Riveters announced the re-signing of a trio of defenders: Courtney Burke, Michelle Picard, and Jenny Ryan.

All three played for Team Ott in the All-Star game and also for Team NWHL in the exhibition series against Team USA.

Picard was an assistant captain for the Isobel Cup winning team. She had four assists in 16 games. She was also the Foundation Award winner last season and the season prior.

“I’m so excited to be back with the Riveters this season,” said Picard in the league’s press release. “I’m grateful to be a part of this organization and I really can’t thank our fans enough for their support. They are a huge reason why playing with the Rivs is so special. Now it’s time to defend the Cup!”

Ryan had a strong first season in the league with 16 points in 16 games. She was a finalist for the Rookie of the Year award.

Burke looks forward to third season with Riveters

Last season, Burke was named the Defender of the Year. Funnily enough, she thinks that the area she needs the most improvement on heading into her third season.

“I want to work more on my defensive game. I am very offensive-minded and need to continue to focus on bettering my game in the d-zone and transition,” she said in an email interview with The Ice Garden. She was the most offensive defender with 19 points, second overall on the team. She lead the team in assists as well with 17.

Can the Riveters rebuild the best offense in the league?

The Wisconsin-alumna is excited about the future of the league and women’s hockey, something that informed a decision to re-sign. “I decided to re-sign because I’ve had a great time playing the past two years. The league is growing and gaining more momentum so it’s a great time to be a part of the NWHL,” she said. The Champions Cup against the SDHL’s Luleå Hockey/MSSK only adds to that in Burke’s mind.

Burke, along with Ryan and Picard, bring the Riveters to 10 players on the season. However, the Riveters are the only team without a coach for the upcoming season. Burke isn’t phased by the long stretch without a coach. “It’s not something that’s a huge concern of mine. Right now we have people starting to sign and I’m sure they will hire someone that will step right in to create a good culture and set the team up for success,“ she said.

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