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Drown named MVP

Alexandria’s Melissa Drown (right) battles New Ulm’s Kali Denn for the puck during the Class A consolation game at Ridder Arena during the state tournament on February 20, 2014. (Blaze Fugina/Echo Press)

The Alexandria girls’ hockey team handed out team awards after a season where it finished in sixth place at the Class A state tournament.

Senior forward Melissa Drown received several team awards after she led the team with 20 goals and 12 assists in the regular season. She was named the Cardinals’ Most Valuable Player and Offensive Player of the Year. Drown also won the Verd Anez award, given to a player who has done a lot for the program.

The award is named after former Alexandria assistant coach Verd Anez, who died in a tragic accident while shoveling snow off a barn during the 2011 season.

Junior forward Micaela Swenson was named to the team’s Unsung Hero award, which recognizes a player who did not produce large statistical numbers and is sometimes underappreciated by people outside the team. Swenson scored three goals and assisted on two for the Cardinals this season.

Senior forward Taylor Bollman received the Courtney Walsh award, given to a player who loves being part of the team and always has a smile on their face. The award is given in the name of Courtney Walsh, a player who died unexpectedly after her senior year for the Cardinals.

Junior defenseman Nicole Bartels and Drown were named to the Central Lakes Conference All Conference Team, and senior center Rachel Drew, senior center Taylor Ellingson, sophomore defenseman Lauren Niska and freshman defenseman McKenzie Revering were selected all-conference honorable mention.

The Cardinals also received recognition for their achievements in the classroom. Drown was named to the all-state academic team, and the team earned the Section 6A academic championship.

Blaze Fugina

Blaze Fugina is the sports editor of the Woodbury and South Washington County Bulletin newspapers. Previously, Blaze worked as a sports editor for the Pierce County Herald and a sports reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in May of 2011. You can follow Blaze on Twitter at @BlazeFugina.

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