Six Minnesotans were named to the under-18 U.S. team which will play Canada in a three-game series starting Thursday in Rockland, Ont.
Among them are two Roseville High School teammates, forward Kate Flug and defender Lee Stecklein.
The others, picked from candidates at the USA Hockey Women's National Festival in Blaine, are forwards Dani Cameranesi of Blake, Kate Schipper of Breck and Mollie Illikainen of Grand Rapids, and defender Samantha LaShomb of South St. Paul.
Stecklein was on the U.S. team that swept Canada in the under-18 series last year. She also was on a U.S. team that won the under-18 IIHF Women's World Championships in January.
The 22 players on the team come from 11 different states. Minnesota, with six, had the most players. Next is Massachusetts with three, Michigan, Illinois, New York and Connecticut with two, and Arizona, California, Georgia, Maryland and New Hampshire with one.
A seventh player with Minnesota ties is defender Courtney Burke who plays for Shattuck-St. Mary's. She is from Albany, N.Y.
Joel Johnson, the goalie coach for the Gophers men's and women's hockey teams, will be one of the assistants on the team.
Roman Augustoviz spends Minnesota's winters covering college hockey, specifically the Gophers, and other University of Minnesota sports. During the summer, he writes about the WNBA's Minnesota Lynx, with a dose of U sports sprinkled in. Follow @RomanStrib on Twitter. E-mail Roman.
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