The fight for a spot on the 2018 U.S. Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Team just heated up.
On Saturday, USA Hockey announced the addition of Cayla Barnes to the 2017-18 U.S. Women’s National Team.
The Olympic team, which will be named on or around Jan. 1, will consist of 23 players. With the addition of Barnes, the national team roster is now 24 players deep.
Barnes is an 18-year-old freshman at Boston College. She played on three gold-medal-winning U.S. teams at the IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championship from 2015-17, which included receiving the Directorate Award as Best Defenseman the past two tournaments.
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“Cayla is a poised, young defenseman and we are looking forward to her joining the women’s national team as we prepare for the upcoming 2017 Four Nations Cup,” Reagan Carey, general manager of both the 2017-18 U.S. Women’s National Team and 2018 U.S. Olympic Women’s Ice Hockey Team, said in a statement. “Cayla has proven to be an impact player for Team USA at the Under-18 level, and we expect her skill, vision and energy will serve her well at the national team level.”
Barnes played with the national team for two exhibition games against Canada in December 2016, one of which was part of the inaugural Team USA Winter Champions Series presented by Comcast.
The Eastvale, California native joins Kacey Bellamy, Megan Bozek, Kali Flanagan, Megan Keller, Gigi Marvin, Monique Lamoureux-Morando, Emily Pfalzer and Lee Stecklein as defensemen on the national team.
Barnes is the youngest member of the team by 18 months.
She joins the team in time for the Four Nations Cup, Nov. 7-12 in Florida.