Selander’s Record-Setting College Career Sets a High Bar Head of Rookie Season

Selander’s Record-Setting College Career Sets a High Bar Head of Rookie Season

This story was originally posted on thehockeynews.com featuring RPI standout Lovisa Selander

by Jared Clinton

Before we talk about Lovisa Selander, there’s something you need to know: there may not be another rookie entering the NWHL this season with more hype or greater expectations.

The Pride keeper, who was a fourth-round pick, 20th overall, in 2018, is considered by many to be a game changer and all assumptions are that she’ll be the starter in Boston this season. A rangy Swedish netminder, the 23-year-old set the NCAA on fire during her junior and senior seasons, posting a combined .938 save percentage over her final two campaigns at the collegiate level. She was a top-10 finalist for the Patty Kazmaier, the first RPI player to earn the distinction, the ECAC Goaltender of the Year and after earning a spot on Sweden’s 4 Nations Cup roster last year, Selander was along for the ride at with the national team at the 2019 World Championship. Oh, she also set the collegiate record for career saves, turning aside 4,167 pucks across four seasons by the time all was said and done.

Considering that last number, one might think that on the eve of her professional debut, Selander is looking forward to her time in the NWHL if for no other reason than that it might offer her a respite from the constant crease crashing she faced at times during her college career. Turns out, quite the opposite. In fact, if Selander has any concern – and “concern” might be a complete misnomer given her calm, cool, almost ho-hum demeanor about her first foray into the big leagues – it’s that she won’t see enough rubber.

“At RPI, some games, I knew I was going to get peppered,” Selander said. “For me, those are almost easier games because you just have to focus on the next puck. But I don’t know what the games are going to look like right now. If I’m going from 40 shots to maybe 20, a lot of it is mentally staying in the game, staying focused, without seeing the puck as much.”

That might not be the only adjustment for Selander, however. Though she played in a powerful college conference that included powerhouse clubs such as Clarkson, Cornell, Princeton and Colgate, Selander is set to spend the coming campaign squaring off against top talents from across the women’s hockey landscape. That means adapting to a number of new players who have different tendencies than those she became familiar with during her college career.

“I watch some video, you can talk to others and a couple more experienced players might have some tips and tricks, but what I usually do is assume everyone is a major threat when they come down with the puck and then you go from there,” Selander said. “In a game, you can notice who likes to shoot from the outside, who will want to break in every time. Some things you pick up as the game moves on and some things you can pick up on over the season.”

 

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