When you ask Ross Murray, head coach of the Girls Tier I 19U Bay State Breakers, the best attribute of Caroline Harvey, he doesn’t immediately jump to her on-ice skills.
It wasn’t her ability to jump up in the play, steal a puck, get on her edges to the front of the net or score five hole in their 11-0 win on Thursday at the Chipotle-USA Hockey National Championships—though that certainly was on display and did not go unnoticed to anyone watching.
Rather, Murray harps on how good of a teammate Harvey is.
“I think she’s the ultimate teammate and gamer,” Murray said. “Just a week ago she was playing with Kessel and Carpenter. Now, she shows up for the Breakers, and to her, she’s just [jersey] number three for the Breakers … she looks at it like she’s just one of 16 players this weekend trying to get a national championship.”
In March, Harvey made the 2021 U.S. Women’s National Team, and earlier this month, she was preparing to compete at the IIHF Women’s World Championship with Team USA in Portland, Maine, as one of the youngest members of the squad. With the world championship event now postponed to August 20-31, 2021, Harvey saw a silver lining in the fact that she would be able to come back to this Breakers team with an opportunity to win a national championship.
“It was very disappointing for worlds to be postponed, and hopefully it will be rescheduled in the near future,” Harvey said. “But I definitely was super excited and happy to join the Breakers and compete.
“It was super exciting being back with the team because I was away for some time. I was glad to be back with the girls and compete in our first game, which went well for us.”
A lot of the group that she is referring to has played together for the past 10 years or so. Many of these girls are committed to play in college, and Murray mentioned that it’s bittersweet to have this final weekend with these girls, including Harvey, that he has coached for so long.
HIGHLIGHT: Harvey works her way through traffic for a nifty goal in Bay State's tournament opener.
“To watch their personal development, more than the hockey development, has really been the best part for me. They’ve all grown into such great people. I look forward to watching them grow into young adults and play college hockey and on to the next level.”
Harvey will head to the University of Wisconsin next year, where she hopes to help push the team toward another National Championship. That’s the kind of player and teammate she is, according to Murray. She is someone that will push her teammates.
“She comes from a great family, and that’s something we look for when making a team,” Murray said. “She just wants to help develop the players on the ice and win the games this weekend.”
This isn’t the first time that Harvey has made it to Nationals, but she has never hoisted the trophy on the final day. She tilted her head back with a half-smile as if it pained her to say she had never won before—she has only been the runner-up. To be able to hoist the trophy on Monday in her last shot?
“That would be amazing,” she said as her face lit up. “Everything I’ve wished.”