Former Gophers star Zumwinkle named PWHL rookie of the year

Minnesota forward Grace Zumwinkle was named PWHL rookie of the year Tuesday at the league's inaugural awards ceremony in St. Paul.

For Zumwinkle, 25, the award added to career accomplishments stretching from the Breck School to the Gophers to the U.S. Olympic team.

Minnesota selected Zumwinkle in the third round of last year's PWHL draft. On Jan. 6, in Minnesota's home opener vs. Montreal at Xcel Energy Center, she notched the league's first hat trick, electrifying an announced crowd of 13,316.

The Excelsior native finished the 24-game regular season with 11 goals and eight assists, though she was held to one point over 10 playoff games en route to the team's Walter Cup title.

Zumwinkle, a two-time All-America honoree for the Gophers, also earned PWHL all-star second team honors. Minnesota defenseman Sophie Jaques and Zumwinkle both made the league's all-rookie team.

Toronto's Natalie Spooner received the league's first Billie Jean King MVP Award. Other Toronto award winners were Troy Ryan (coach of the year) and Kristen Campbell (goaltender of the year). Montreal's Erin Ambrose was named defender of the year.


* Gophers junior Connor Wietgrefe was named ABCA/Rawlings NCAA Division I First Team All-Midwest Region. The lefthander had a 7-4 record in 13 starts, and his eight wins tied for first and his 2.77 ERA ranked second among Big Ten pitchers.

* The University of Wisconsin-River Falls has been named the host of the NCAA 2025 Division III Women's Ice Hockey Championship, March 28 and 30 at Hunt Arena.