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Gophers' Taylor Heise named nation's top women's hockey player

The senior forward is just the third Gopher to receive the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award.
FILE - In this Sunday, March 24, 2019 file photo, Minnesota's Taylor Heise (9) controls the puck during the third period in the NCAA Division I women's Frozen Four hockey championship game against Wisconsin in Hamden, Conn. A viable professional hockey league for women is the goal of the current crop of veteran players, and the youngsters who dream of playing the sport professionally when they get older are behind the current efforts being made. Sophomore Taylor Heise of the University of Minnesota, says having them fight for players like her “is amazing.” (AP Photo/Stephen Dunn, File)

MINNEAPOLIS — Taylor Heise became just the third player in University of Minnesota history to receive the Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award, which is given each year to the nation's top player in Division I women's hockey player. The announcement was made Saturday morning.

The senior forward led the nation in scoring with 28 goals and 32 assists, the most points by a Gopher in a single season since 2015-16. Heise, a Lake City, Minn. native, was also named first-team All-American while garnering the WCHA's Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year awards.

"I am beyond honored to receive such a prestigious award that means so much to women's hockey," said Heise of winning the 2022 Patty Kazmaier Memorial Award. "I would like to thank my current coaches and teammates for always supporting me and making all my years at the University of Minnesota, especially this year, so amazing. To have my name put alongside so many talented women is an absolute honor."

Heise, who is expected to return next season, is already as one of the most prolific scorers in program history, compiling 67 career goals and 160 total points.

"We are absolutely thrilled for Taylor, her family, teammates and our program," said head coach Brad Frost. "She had a year that we will all remember and is very deserving of the Patty Kazmaier award. Taylor embodies what Patty was all about and we are so happy for her. To add her name to the likes of Wendell and Kessel, as past winners from the University of Minnesota, speaks volumes to the season that Taylor had."

Minnesota freshman Peyton Hemp, an Andover, Minn., native, was also named National Rookie of the Year this season.

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