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Canada's Vaillancourt in the running to win Kazmaier hockey award again

NHL.com @NHL

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Canadians Sarah Vaillancourt, Meghan Agosta, Rebecca Johnston and Jennifer Wakefield were among the finalists named Monday for the Patty Kazmaier Award, which goes to the top female hockey player in U.S. college hockey.

Vaillancourt, the Harvard captain from Sherbrooke, Que., won the award last year. She ranks second in NCAA scoring with 52 points this season (25 goals, 27 assists).

Agosta, a Mercyhurst junior from Ruthven, Ont.., was nominated a third straight year. She leads Division 1 women's hockey with 68 points (35-33).

Johnston, from Sudbury, Ont., is a sophomore at Cornell and ranks seventh in the NCAA with 45 points (25-20).

Wakefield, from Pickering, Ont., is a sophomore at New Hampshire. She has 49 points (32-17) and leads the NCAA in both power-play goals (13) and game-winning goals (nine).

All four play for Canada's national team. Vaillancourt and Agosta won an Olympic gold medal for Canada in 2006.

Other nominees include Wisconsin's Hilary Knight, Erika Lawler and goaltender Jessie Vetter, Boston College's Molly Schaus and Minnesota's Monique Lamoureux and Gigi Marvin.

Three finalists will be announced March 10 and the winner will be named during the women's Frozen Four tournament March 21 in Boston.

NCAA Division 1 women's coaches voted for the top 10 finalists. The winner will be chosen by a 13-member selection committee that includes coaches, media and a representative of USA Hockey.

The award is named after Princeton defenceman Patty Kazmaier, who died of a blood disease on Feb. 15, 1990 at the age of 28.

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