Watts Becomes First Freshman in NCAA History to Win Patty Kazmaier Award

daryl watts

Two days after being named an American Hockey Coaches Association First-Team All-American, Boston College women’s hockey forward Daryl Watts reached a new milestone—in fact, she did something that no one in the sport has ever done before.

On Saturday morning at the University of Minnesota’s McNamara Alumni Center, the U.S.A. Hockey Foundation announced that Watts is the 21st winner of the Patty Kazmaier Award—otherwise known as the national player of the year honor—becoming the first freshman, let alone underclassmen, to ever receive the accolade. The Toronto, Ontario native, who led the nation in scoring, beat out Boston University’s Victoria Bach and Clarkson’s Loren Gabel for the prestigious distinction.

“I’m so humbled and honored to be named the Patty Kazmaier Award winner,” Watts said, per BCEagles.com. “Being mentioned in the same conversation as the women and legends who’ve won this award in the past—some of whom I’ve looked up to for years—is a lot to take in.”

One of those legends is Alex Carpenter, BC ’16—the Eagles’ second all-time leading scorer and only other player to win the award. But, in reality, the news has been a long time coming. From start to finish, Watts dominated college hockey this season, racking up 82 points—seven more than any other skater in the country and the second-most ever logged by a freshman, all-time.

While she lit the lamp 42 times, tying Julie Chu, Harvard ’07, for the most goals recorded by a freshman in NCAA history, the forward was much more than just a scorer. En route to nine weekly Hockey East honors and four conference Player of the Month awards, Watts dialed up 40 assists—14 of which came on game-winning scoring plays—finishing the year as just the seventh player to ever post a 40-goal, 40-assist campaign.

The Patty Kazmaier Award is the latest addition to the freshman’s increasingly large trophy case. Already crowned the Hockey East Player and Rookie of the Year, Watts’ first year on the Heights has turned into one of the more memorable individual performances in school history.  

Featured Image by Kaitlin Meeks / Heights Editor

About Andy Backstrom 266 Articles
Andy is the sports editor of The Heights. He is from the suburbs of Philly, but has been an Arizona Cardinals enthusiast since the first grade. Every so often, he'll replay Super Bowl XLIII on Madden to exact revenge on his father's beloved Steelers. You can follow him on Twitter @AndyHeights.