COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Both the U.S. Women’s National Team and U.S. National Sled Hockey Team were honored tonight (Nov. 29) with Team of the Year honors by the United States Olympic Committee as part of the 2017 Team USA Awards, Best of the Year, in Los Angeles.
The U.S. Women’s National Team was named the Olympic Team of the Year after claiming its fourth consecutive gold medal at the 2017 International Ice Hockey Federation Women’s World Championship, and first-ever on home ice, in Plymouth, Michigan. The U.S. National Sled Hockey Team was named the Paralympic Team of the Year after registering a 10-1-0-1 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record that included an unprecedented third straight World Sled Hockey Challenge last December and having its season culminate with a silver medal at the 2017 Para Sled Hockey World Championship in Gangneung, South Korea.
The Team USA Awards, Best of the Year, recognize the outstanding achievements of Team USA athletes year-round. Athletes and teams considered for this Best of the Year awards were finalists for Best of the Month honors, dating back to the fall of the previous year and coinciding with the sport calendar. Online fan voting accounted for 50 percent of the final tally, while members of the Olympic and Paralympic family – including an esteemed panel of Olympic and Paralympic journalists – accounted for the other 50 percent.
The U.S. Women’s National Team became eligible for the Best of the Year award after being honored for one of the program’s monthly awards, Best of April. This Spring, the U.S. went 4-1-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L, earning five victories in five games, including a thrilling 3-2 overtime win over rival Canada in the gold medal-game. The win, which was preceded by Team USA’s second straight Four Nations Cup title in Vierumaki, Finland, last November, was Team USA’s seventh victory in the past eight competitions and represented the first time a U.S. Women’s National Team has won a world championship on home ice.
The U.S. National Sled Hockey Team opened the 2016-17 season by compiling a 4-1-0-0 (W-OTW-OTL-L) record en route to becoming the first team to win its fifth overall title in the event and fourth in the last five years. At the 2017 Para Sled Hockey World Championship, the U.S. posted a perfect 6-0 record to reach its fifth straight world championship gold medal game before falling to Canada, 4-1. The silver medal followed a run of six-straight major international titles.
NOTES: As the U.S. Women’s National Team trains in Florida, special guest, 8U youth players from the Anaheim Lady Ducks, a USA Hockey Model Association, were on hand in Los Angeles to accept the award on the team’s behalf… The 2017-18 U.S. Women’s National Team currently trains together at Florida Hospital Center Ice in Wesley Chapel, Florida, in preparation for The Time is Now Tour, presented by Toyota, and the 2018 Olympic Winter Games … The Time is Now Tour, presented by Toyota, consists of a series of games in the U.S. to assist the U.S. Women's National Team in preparation for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. For more information, including the full schedule and ticket information, visit TheTimeisNowTour.com… The 2017-18 U.S. National Sled Hockey Team will open international competition this weekend at the 2017 World Sled Hockey Challenge in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. The team will then train together in Chicago throughout January and February in preparation for the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games. The final rosters for both the 2018 U.S. Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Team and 2018 U.S. Paralympic Sled Hockey Team are expected to be announced on Jan. 1, 2018 … For full coverage of both teams, visit teamusa.usahockey.com.