CALGARY, Alberta  -- Courtney Birchard (Mississauga, Ontario) and Jenn Wakefield (Pickering, Ontario), both sophomore forwards on the seventh-ranked University of New Hampshire women’s ice hockey team, were named to Canada’s National Women’s Under-22 Team that will compete at the 2009 MLP Cup (formerly Air Canada Cup), Hockey Canada announced earlier this week.

Birchard and Wakefield won gold with Canada at last year’s Air Canada Cup, and Wakefield was on the silver-medal team at the 2008 Four Nations Cup that was

held in November. At last year’s event, Wakefield recorded two assists in each of the first two games and then scored a goal in both the semifinal and gold-medal game. Birchard tallied one point in each of the first three games.

In 16 games at UNH this season, Wakefield has recorded team highs in goals (15), power-play goals (six), game-winning goals (four), points (24) and shots (97). She is also tied for second in plus/minus (+9) and is second in shorthanded goals (two).

Birchard has skated in all 18 UNH games with totals of four goals and nine assists for 13 points. She is tied with Wakefield for fourth in assists and she is also tied with her countryman in plus/minus. Birchard is second on the team in shots (70).

Canada will play a pair of games against Switzerland on Dec. 29 & 31 prior to traveling to Ravensburg, Germany for the MLP Cup from Jan. 2-6, 2009. Canada has won the tournament every year since its inception in 2003. They will play in


Group A against Finland and Russia.

New Hampshire (9-4-5 overall, 5-1-3 Hockey East) concludes the month with a game Dec. 12 (7 p.m.) at Harvard University. The Wildcats are then idle until Jan. 10, when they play at Providence College. UNH’s next home game is Jan. 16 (7 p.m.) against Dartmouth College.

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