Annie Pankowski becomes Wisconsin Badgers’ third three-time All-American
HAMDEN, Conn. — Annie Pankowski already was part of one elite hat trick among University of Wisconsin women’s hockey players, and she joined another on Thursday.
Pankowski was named a first-team All-American by the American Hockey Coaches Association, making her the third three-time award winner in Badgers history.
She joined Brianna Decker (first team in 2012, second team in 2011 and 2013) and Hilary Knight (first team in 2009 and 2011, second team in 2012) among UW’s three-time All-Americans.
Also Thursday, Badgers junior goaltender Kristen Campbell was named a second-team All-American.
Pankowski, a finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award that will be presented Saturday, was a second-teamer in 2016 and 2017. She sat out last season because of Olympic centralization.
This season, she became the third UW player to score 20 goals in each of her four collegiate seasons, joining Knight and Meghan Duggan.
“When you wear that Wisconsin logo, it’s a sense of pride of the people that came before us,” Pankowski said. “For me, it’s a really big deal to follow in their footsteps, and to contribute to such a winning program has been really important to me.”
With 25 goals and 47 points, Pankowski leads the top-ranked Badgers, who play Clarkson in the NCAA Frozen Four semifinals on Friday.
Campbell was the second-team choice for the second straight season. She leads the country in goals-against average (1.09), victories (33) and minutes played (2,264).
The Badgers have had an All-American in four straight seasons and eight of the last nine.
For being the Western Collegiate Hockey Association coach of the year and leading a team to the Frozen Four, UW’s Mark Johnson was one of the finalists for the national coach of the year award. That trophy went to Cornell’s Doug Derraugh.
Badgers sophomore goalie Breanna Blesi was honored with the Elite 90 award as the player with the highest cumulative grade-point average at the Frozen Four.
Second time for Hamden
The Badgers are hoping for a better result than the first time the Frozen Four was in Hamden.
UW held a 3-2 lead over Minnesota after two periods of the 2014 semifinals before the Golden Gophers scored three times to drop the Badgers to 25-1 that season when leading after 40 minutes.
Clarkson then ended Minnesota’s attempt to become the second team to win three straight national championships with a 5-4 victory in the title game.
The Golden Knights enter this year’s Frozen Four looking to join Minnesota Duluth as the only teams to three-peat. The Bulldogs won the first three NCAA championships from 2001 to 2003.