The Cadets’ new season is right around the corner as Sophie Leclerc begins her tenure as Norwich head coach.
“I think there’s a cool connection,” Lecerc said. “It’s easier. The conversations, the lessons; you can relate to experiences we’ve both had, and I think it’s something that will continue throughout the season for sure.”
The 2010 Norwich graduate took home a national championship and Division III All-American honors during her career as a player for the Cadets.
Leclerc inherits a team just two years removed from capturing the second national championship in program history, and a first-round exit last year shouldn’t stop the team from returning as a contender in 2019-20.
Norwich brings back four of the five leading scorers from last season, including All-Americans in senior forward Amanda Conway (Methuen, Mass. / Boston Shamrocks) and junior defender Samantha Benoit (Bow, N.H. / North American Hockey Academy). Conway was second in the nation with 30 goals last season.
“There’s this real sense of purpose throughout the team that you can feel,” Leclerc said. “They understand what it takes to be successful, and my job now is just to continue to challenge them.”
The exhibition slate begins on the road against Saint Anselm on Tuesday, October 22 at 7 p.m. and continues when the Cadets host Bishop’s University (QC) on Sunday, October 27 at 2 p.m.
Norwich begins the regular season on the road against reigning national champion Plattsburgh State on Wednesday, November 6. The two most recent national champs will face off at Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena at 7 p.m.