NWHL All-Star Captain Madison Packer (8 Points) is VEDA Player of the Week
By Jane Norton
In her first games since being named one of the two captains for the 2020 NWHL All-Star Game, Madison Packer had herself quite the weekend. The Riveters captain had eight points over two victories on the road against the Beauts, and for her efforts has been named the VEDA NWHL Player of the Week.
Packer pointed to the emerging chemistry, talent and work ethic of the Riveters as the reason for the sweep in Buffalo and the earning of the individual honor.
“We had a room full of new faces at the start of the season, and we have worked hard to come together as a team,” said Packer, who is captain of the Riveters. “Things are starting to click really well for us. People are getting more comfortable playing together and settling into their roles a little more. There’s still a lot of work to do, but this group has what it takes.
“We have a lot of good hockey players in the room, and really good people too, which makes going to work with them fun. That’s important. It’s a special group. I’m proud to be a part of it.”
In the Riveters’ wild 7-4 win on Saturday in the Labatt Blue NWHL Buffalo Believes Classic outdoors at RiverWorks, Packer had two goals and an assist. Her second goal came 33 seconds after her teammate Tatiana Shatalova scored to give the Riveters a 5-4 lead after four goals by Taylor Accursi had deadlocked the game at 4-4.
Packer was even better on Sunday, when the Rivs completed the sweep with a 6-3 victory over the Beauts indoors at Northtown Center at Amherst. Packer had two goals and three assists, with her goals coming early in the first and second periods to set the tone.
The captain said winning VEDA Player of the Week is “exciting and really a team accomplishment. We had contribution all weekend from multiple people. People moving the puck to me, or putting the puck in when I moved it to them. It was a big weekend for us.”
Besides planning for the 2020 All-Star Weekend in Boston in February and leading the Riveters to Isobel Cup contention, Packer continues to dedicate this season to the memory of her childhood friend, Kyle Pavone. The former frontman of the band We Came As Romans, Pavone passed away on Aug. 25, 2018 from an accidental overdose. Kyle and Madison were raised on the same block in the Detroit suburbs.
At each Riveters home game this season – including the two this coming weekend – Packer wears a Kyle Pavone Foundation (KPF) cap as she lines up with her team for pre-game introductions. At the Riveters’ post-game meet-and-greet with fans, she has KPF caps available and signs them for any fans who purchase them for a donation of $20. All of the money goes directly to the foundation, and Packer is making an additional contribution of her own. Those interested in acquiring Madison Packer-signed KPF caps are also encouraged to contact her via Twitter (@madison_packer_).
Packer and the Riveters are home this weekend for an important two-game series against the undefeated Boston Pride at ProSkate Arena. Games are at 7:30 on Saturday and 4:30 on Sunday and tickets are available now at NWHL.zone/tickets.
Photo Credit: Kate Frese