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CWHL's Boston Blades Select Dunne in Sunday's League Entry Draft




Penn State graduate Cassie Dunne's quest to play professional hockey will officially extend at least into September, as she was selected by the Boston Blades in Sunday's Canadian Women's Hockey League Draft.

Although it was largely a formality given the nature of the CWHL Draft - all who register are selected and are allowed to designate the team or teams they would be willing to join - the event still crystallizes Dunne, who registered back in June, as the first Penn Stater ever to have her rights held by a CWHL team. She is also just the fifth player from the ACHA to be drafted by or play for a CWHL team.

From here, the defenseman and the other Blades' other 24 draftees will be invited to try out for the 2013 and 2015 Clarkson Cup champions next month.

Dunne's Penn State career, among the most decorated and successful in team history, concluded this past season with the Wyndmoor, PA native serving as both an alternate captain and the club's president. Her senior year was her best in many respects - despite missing four games, she was second on the squad in goal scoring while setting program records for power play markers over both a single season and a career.

In December of 2016, she was selected to the 2017 U.S. National University Team that competed at the World University Games in Almaty, Kazakhstan, eventually being named a co-captain of the squad and helping lead it to a bronze medal. At the end of the year, she collected ACHA Academic All-American and ECWHL First Team All-Conference honors, and was a finalist for ACHA All-American selection.

She arrived at Penn State in 2013-14 from the noted Princeton Tiger Lilies program and immediately became a cornerstone of PSU's excellent defense group, as the Lady Ice Lions advanced to the ACHA Division 2 national championship game to close her freshman season, then to the ACHA Division 1 national tournament in 2014-15.

Other ACHA alumni picked in the CWHL Draft, which dates to 2010, include Rhode Island's Sydney Collins and Kristen Levesque by the Blades last year, with Levesque going on to play for the team in 2016-17. Additionally, Liberty's Sarah Stevenson was the highest-ever selection of an ACHA player at the event, as the Toronto Furies picked her in the fourth round, 17th overall, in 2015. Hayley Williams (Miami/Robert Morris), while not drafted into the league, played for the Brampton Thunder in 2016-17.

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