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Barnes Readies for U18 Championships After Key Year

By Dan Scifo - Special to, 12/22/15, 4:00PM MST


Cayla Barnes is one of seven players back from last year’s U18 world championship squad.

​Cayla Barnes admitted that 2014 was the most important year of her hockey career to this point. It set the stage for a rock-solid 2015 campaign within the USA Hockey program, which in turn prepped her for another big year with the national program.

“That year [2014] was really important and crucial,” Barnes said. “You learn so much, and I think what I learned most is that you know your role on the team, you do what’s expected of you and you do it to the best of your ability.

“It wasn’t just the memories and how much better of a hockey player I became, but how much better of a person I was. Overall that year was incredibly important and changed my life.”

As the calendar flips to 2016, Barnes is looking for more, including a second straight gold medal for the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team next month in St. Catharines, Ontario.

“I’m so excited, I think about it every day,” said Barnes, who has a countdown on her phone. “I’m just looking forward to getting with the girls, playing together and having this experience.”

Barnes is one of seven players on this year’s team who helped the 2015 squad earn the program’s fourth gold medal on home ice at last year’s tournament in Buffalo, N.Y.

That was her first season on the U.S. U18 team. She returns a leader, excited for the opportunity to help this year’s first-time players create unforgettable experiences and tournament memories.

“It was indescribable and amazing in every way,” Barnes said of last year’s tournament. “Our team had such a close bond, and I think that was one of my favorite parts. We won the gold medal and that’s an experience I’ll never forget, but we made so many friendships and we were so close.”

Barnes was the youngest player on the team, turning 16 during the tournament. She admits it wasn’t easy as a first-year player.

“There’s a lot of pressure because you have to perform,” Barnes said. “It was really good once I got there because the older girls took me under their wing. Once you get there, you feel like part of the team.”

It’s a little easier for Barnes the second time around.

“It’s definitely less nerve-wracking,” Barnes said. “The first time, you’re really nervous going in because you don’t know what the atmosphere is going to be like.

“Now you know what’s coming at you and you know what it takes to be at this level, so you’re more confident all around.”

The USA Hockey program helped her growth.

Barnes attended a player development camp in 2013 and was a Women’s National Festival invitee the following year. She also made the U.S. Women’s U18 Select Team for the U18 series before her time on the gold medal-winning national U18 team.

Another year of development camps, National Festivals and a second stint on the U18 Select Team has only helped.

“I’ve learned so much, it’s unbelievable,” Barnes said. “You play with world-class coaches and world-class teammates, so you’re always learning and getting better.

“When I got home, everything was at that level. You could tell everything was more sharp and advanced.”

Barnes, a native of Corona, California, played for the LA Selects, West Coast Selects, Junior Kings and Anaheim Lady Ducks growing up. She moved to the east coast to play at New Hampton and with the East Coast Wizards and is currently committed to Boston College.

USA Hockey has also played an instrumental role to get Barnes to this point.

“When you go to camp and play with these high-caliber players, you learn so much from coaches and players every day,” Barnes said. “Every day you step on the ice and they’re making you better.”

Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.


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STOCKHOLM - Amanda Pelkey (Montpelier, Vt.) netted a hat trick in leading the U.S. Women's National Under-18 Team to an 11-0 victory over the Czech Republic in the opening game of the 2011 International Ice Hockey Federation World Women's U18 Championship here tonight at Stora Mossen Arena. Fourteen U.S. players factored in the scoring, with eight goal-scorers.

"Our team did a really good job of working hard and staying disciplined," said Jodi McKenna, head coach for Team USA. "We played well both offensively and defensively - it was a great start to the tournament."

Pelkey scored Team USA's first goal of the tournament at 6:12 of the opening frame when she skated in on the net from the end boards and slipped a backhanded shot past Czech netminder Veronika Hladikova. During a U.S. power play at 18:03, Paige Savage(Carrollton, Texas) found Alex Carpenter (North Reading, Mass.) on the doorstep and Carpenter one-timed a shot into the back of the net to double the U.S. advantage.

The U.S. extended its lead to 7-0 in the second period with five goals. Pelkey scored her second just :53 into the frame on a breakaway. Just over a minute later, Karley Sylvester(Warroad, Minn.) knocked one in during a scramble in front of the Czech net at 2:00.Hannah Brandt (Vadnais Heights, Minn.) and Sydney Daniels (Southwick, Mass.) tallied :29 apart, at 7:18 and 7:47, and Abby Ness (Roseau, Minn.) closed out the period scoring at 12:11.

In the third stanza, Pelkey completed her hat trick at 1:34 to put the U.S. up 8-0. Brandt then scored on the power play at 6:24 when she knocked in Michelle Picard's (Taunton, Mass.) rebound. Shiann Darkangelo (Brighton, Mich.) added a tally at 12:04 and Emily Pfalzer (Getzville, N.Y.) closed out the scoring with a shot from the top of the slot on the power play at 19:13.

Megan Miller (Long Grove, Ill.) stopped all eight shots she faced for the shutout, while Hladikova made 64 saves in the losing effort.

The U.S. returns to action tomorrow against Japan at 10 a.m. EST.

NOTES: The U.S. outshot the Czech Republic by a 75-8 count ... The U.S. was 3-for-9 on the power play, while holding the Czechs scoreless on four man-advantage opportunities ... Six U.S. players had multi-point games, including Amanda Pelkey (3-1--4), Hannah Brandt (2-1--3), Alex Carpenter (1-1--2), Sydney Daniels (1-1--2), Abby Ness (1-1--2) and Emily Pfalzer (1-1--2) ...  The eight-nation tournament, being played for the fourth time, includes Canada, the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Japan, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States ... Team USA captured gold in each of the first two years of the tournament (2008, 2009), followed by a silver medal in 2010 ... Jodi McKenna, the head women's ice hockey coach at Wesleyan Univeristy, is serving as head coach for Team USA. She is assisted by Brian Durocher, head women's ice hockey coach at Boston University, and Jennifer Kranz, assistant women's ice hockey coach at St. Cloud State University ...Follow @USAHockeyScores on Twitter for live scoring updates during the 2011 IIHF World Women's U18 Championship. Scores will be designated with #U18wwc ... Follow the U.S. Women's National Program blog here... Find USA Hockey on Facebook at and Twitter at


Scoring By Period

USA 2 5 4 -- 11
CZE 0 0 0 -- 0

First Period - Scoring: 1, USA, Pelkey (unassisted), 6:12 (4x4); 2, USA, Carpenter (Savage), 18:03 (pp). Penalties: CZE, Pecinova (hooking), 2:33; USA, Marvin (slashing), 4:45; CZE, Jirsova (body checking), 5:07; USA, Sylvester (hooking), 12:00; CZE, Vytiskova (tripping), 14:35; CZE, Tejralova (holding), 16:51.

Second Period - Scoring: 3, USA, Pelkey (Field), :53; 4, USA, Sylvester (unassisted), 2:00; 5, USA, Brandt (Pelkey), 7:18; 6, USA, Daniels (Trivigno, Ness), 7:47; 7, USA, Ness (Daniels, Pfalzer), 12:11. Penalties: USA, Trivigno (hooking), 3:26; CZE, Krizova (hooking), 13:31; CZE, Novakova (hooking), 18:59.

Third Period - Scoring: 8, USA, Pelkey (Brandt), 1:34; 9, USA, Brandt (Picard), 6:24 (pp); 10, USA, Darkangelo (Marvin), 12:04; 11, USA, Pfalzer (Skarupa, Carpenter), 19:13 (pp). Penalties: CZE, Solnickova (hooking), 5:35; USA, Daniels (hooking), 13:02; CZE, Tejralova (holding), 16:09; CZE, Tejralova (body checking), 18:22.

Shots by Period 1 2 3 Total
USA 34 29 12 75
CZE 3 4 1 8
Goaltenders (SH/SV) 1 2 3 Total
USA, Miller, 60:00 3-3 4-4 1-1 8-8
CZE, Hladikova, 60:00 34-32 29-24 12-8 75-64

Power Play: USA 3-9; CZE 0-4
Penalties: USA 4-8; CZE 9-18
Officials: Referee-Malin Axelsson (SWE); Linesmen-Magdalena Cerhitova (SVK), Haley Wieler (CAN)

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