The 17-strong squad that will represent USA in Para ice hockey at the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games was unveiled on Saturday (22 January) during intermission at the NHL’s Nashville Predators game.
The group features 11 players who have represented Team USA previously on the Paralympic stage, as well as six athletes making their Paralympic debuts.
“I’m really honoured and excited to be a part of this team,” said David Hoff, Head Coach of the team. “This is a real dynamic group of athletes and every player brings something unique to the table. I want to congratulate all the players on achieving this honour and thank them for their efforts they’ve put forth thus far, but we all know this is just the beginning. We’re looking forward to growing as a group as we look ahead and prepare for Beijing.”
In addition to the 11 athletes who helped the US capture gold at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Paralympics, the roster includes 14 players who led Team USA to its second-straight and fifth overall gold medal in World Championships history last year.
The US heads into Beijing 2022 ranked No. 1 in the world as both the reigning Paralympic and world champions, having won three consecutive and four overall Paralympic golds.
All-time, the US holds a 22-2-0-6-1 (W-OTW-OTL-L-T) record and has earned five medals, including four gold medals (2002, 2010, 2014, 2018) and one bronze medal (2006).
SIX PARALYMPIC DEBUTS
Team USA will once again be captained by three-time Paralympic gold medallist Josh Pauls, who is making his fourth appearance at the Paralympics.
The roster also features two-time Paralympic gold medallists Declan Farmer, Jen Lee, Kevin McKee, Rico Roman and Brody Roybal, who all earned gold with Team USA in 2014 and 2018.
At PyeongChang 2018, Farmer tied the US and Paralympic records for most goals at one Games (11) and scored both the tying goal, with 37 seconds left in regulation, and game-winning gold in overtime to defeat Canada in the gold-medal contest. He was also named Player of the Game in both of the last two world championships gold-medal matches, securing the game-tying goal in 2019 to force an overtime period again against Canada.
Roybal was named tournament MVP at last year’s World Championships with 11 points in five games, as well as the PyeongChang 2018 Games, where he tied for the tournament lead with 17 points and had two hat tricks in the preliminary round.
Ralph DeQuebec, Noah Grove, Jack Wallace and Josh Misiewicz will be making their second Paralympic appearances after representing Team USA in 2018. Travis Dodson is making his second Paralympic appearance in Para ice hockey and his third overall after competing in Para Nordic skiing in 2014.
Six players will make their Paralympic debuts in Beijing, including 2021 world champions David Eustace, and Joseph Woodke and two-time world champion Kyle Zych.
Malik Jones, Griffin LaMarre, and Evan Nichols will be making their first international appearances with Team USA.