STORRS, Conn. – From 2012 to 2016, former UConn women’s ice hockey player Elaine Chuli accomplished numerous feats for the Huskies – including American Hockey Coaches Association All-America Second Team as a senior – but none bigger than what she did on Sunday.
Chuli (Waterford, Ont.) was selected in the second round of the Canadian Women’s Hockey League (CWHL) by the Vanke Rays, as her prolific career will continue in a professional setting. She was picked 14th overall and was the third goalie taken in the draft.
Seven teams exist in the CWHL, which was founded in 2007 in order to create a place for the highest-level women’s hockey players to continue to compete and to create a future for the sport of women’s hockey – setting the stage for a player like Chuli.
“We are proud of Elaine and happy to see her continue her hockey career in the CWHL,” said MacKenzie.
Recently, she has been working to become a member of the Canadian National Team with the goal of participating in the 2018 Olympics, to be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Before attending UConn, she played on the U-18 Canadian team that won a world championship in 2012.
During her senior season at UConn, she left the team for two weeks in January to play for the U-22 team at the Nations Cup in Germany. Chuli, a 2016 graduate, now looks ahead to her professional career in the CWHL.
One of the best players in UConn history, Chuli was a 13-time Women’s Hockey East Association Defensive Player of the Week as a Husky. She played in 102 games, including 75 (three seasons) under head coach Chris MacKenzie – who took over the program in May of 2013.
She is UConn’s all-time leader in career saves with 3,467, with her single-game best being a monstrous 69-save performance against New Hampshire on Feb. 27, 2016 in the Hockey East quarterfinals. The Huskies advanced to the semifinals with a 4-3 triple overtime win.
Chuli holds the career saves record in Hockey East competition, accumulating 2,202 saves in 65 league games played throughout her four seasons.
As a senior in 2015-16, Chuli made a program-record 972 saves on her way to being runner-up for WHEA Goaltending Champion. As a sophomore, her .929 save percentage is tied for third-best all-time in a single season for any UConn goaltender.
An accounting major at UConn, Chuli is also a certified public accountant.