U.S. women’s hockey team adds college freshman

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To all the skaters who made the U.S. women’s hockey national team: your Olympic roster spot is not assured.

Cayla Barnes, a Boston College freshman defenseman, has been added to the national team and is joining the players training in Wesley Chapel, Fla., for the PyeongChang Winter Games.

USA Hockey confirmed that Barnes is in the running for the Olympic team that will be named in late December or January.

“You wouldn’t be making that move if she didn’t have the ability to play at that level,” U.S. GM Reagan Carey said. “Knowing what she can bring to our team is something that can help, and we’ll continue to evaluate what that looks like.”

Barnes makes 24 players in Wesley Chapel. The Olympic roster size is 23, so at least one player on the national team must be cut. It could be a defenseman or a forward.

Carey said it’s possible that another player could be added to the national team this fall. She added that Barnes’ inclusion was not due to an injury to any other player.

The national team had been 23 players since it was first named in May.

Barnes, an 18-year-old cut from the May national team selection camp, is now the youngest player on the national team by 18 months.

She is younger than any player on either the 2010 or 2014 Olympic teams.

“After camp in April, they basically said, you had a great camp, you’re right there with all the girls selected for this team, but be ready, we’re going to be watching you,” said Barnes, who is leaving BC after playing five games to open her freshman season. “Just be prepared to be called up at any time during this whole process leading up to the Olympics.”

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