Feb. 2, 2007

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Four members of the Ohio State women’s hockey team have been named WCHA Scholar-Athletes, the Western Collegiate Hockey Association announced Thursday. Senior goaltender Erika Vanderveer, junior forwards Erin Keys and Mallory Peckels and sophomore goaltender Liana Bonanno were among the 49 selections from the conference’s men’s and women’s teams. It is the first WCHA Scholar-Athlete nod for Bonanno and Keys and the second honor for Vanderveer and Peckels.

Vanderveer, a native of Bradford, Ontario, who is majoring in sociology, is a two-time member of the WCHA All-Academic team as well as a two-time AWHCA Scholar All-American. She has twice been named an Academic All-Big Ten at-large selection and is a three-time OSU Scholar-Athlete. This season, Vanderveer is 13-7-3 with a 1.93 goals-against-average and .930 save percentage, seventh-best in the nation. She has been named USCHO Defensive Player of the Week twice and WCHA Defensive Player of the Week once.

Peckels, a social work major from Minocqua, Wis., was named an AWHCA Scholar All-American, a member of the WCHA All-Academic team and an Academic All-Big Ten at-large selection in 2005-06. She also is a two-time OSU Scholar-Athlete. Peckels is sixth in scoring for the Buckeyes this season with 18 points on four goals and 14 assists. Her assists and point totals are both career highs.

This is the first academic award for Keys, a communications major from St. Paul, Minn. She leads the team in goals (16) and points (35), is second in assists (19) and fourth in plus/minus (+11) – all are career highs. Overall in the WCHA, Keys is tied for third in scoring and her 35 points are tied for ninth in the OSU record books for single-season scoring. Bonanno, a native of Mount Sinai, N.Y., is undeclared in her major. She earned the team’s Academic Award last season as a freshman and was named an OSU Scholar-Athlete. Bonanno is 1-3-1 this season with a .902 save percentage and 2.96 goals-against-average.

This is the second year of the WCHA Scholar-Athlete award. To earn the honor, student-athletes must be in their sophomore year of school and have a grade-point average of at least 3.50 on a 4.0 scale for the previous two semesters or three quarters. Student-athletes may also qualify if their overall GPA is at least 3.50 for all terms at their institution.