EASTVALE – Eastvale resident Cayla Barnes was part of the 23-player roster for the U.S. women’s Olympic hockey team announced earlier this week.
“Dreams really do come true,” Barnes tweeted. “Truly honored and excited to represent #TeamUSA at the 2018 Winter Olympics with this amazing group of women.”
The 18-year-old defenseman from northwestern Riverside County is the youngest player on the team, which is coached by Robb Stauber, a goaltender who played 56 games for the Los Angeles Kings over four seasons in the early 1990s.
Barnes describes herself as a “creative, offensive defenseman.”
Reagan Carey, USA Hockey’s director of women’s hockey, and general manager of both the 2017-18 U.S. women’s national team and 2018 U.S. Olympic women’s team, called Barnes “a poised, young defenseman.” Barnes was added to the 2017-18 U.S. women’s national team roster Oct. 28, more than a month after it began practice in the Tampa suburb of Wesley Chapel, Florida, and has played seven games with the team, scoring two goals. She also has one assist. She is the only player to win three gold medals at the International Ice Hockey Federation Women’s Under-18 World Championships, helping lead the U.S. to the 2015, 2016 and 2017 titles. She was the team’s captain in 2017 and received the Directorate Award as best defenseman in both 2016 and 2017.
Barnes played for the Los Angeles Junior Kings and Lady Ducks. She helped lead New Hampton School, a boarding school located in New Hampton, New Hampshire, to the first New England Preparatory School Athletic Council Division I championship in 2017. She had played the first five games of her college career for Boston College when she was added to the national team’s roster. She withdrew from Boston College and will return in August 2018 to re-start her freshman year, both academically and athletically.
The U.S. women’s hockey team will begin play in the Olympics Feb. 11 against Finland. The U.S. has won the silver medal each of the past two Olympics and won the IIHF world championship in April.
The roster announcement was made during the second intermission of the NHL Winter Classic at Citi Field in New York City, along with the announcements of the rosters for the men’s Olympic team and Paralympics sled