Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Area Hockey Player Dreaming of Olympics; Dunne Already Has a Gold Medal for the U.S. Under-18 Team

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Area Hockey Player Dreaming of Olympics; Dunne Already Has a Gold Medal for the U.S. Under-18 Team

Article excerpt

O'FALLON, Mo. * Like most teenage girls, Jincy Dunne has a running battle with her mother.

"She's always trying to get me to clean my room," Jincy said.

Added her mother, Tammy, "You should see it; it looks pretty bad."

Jincy can be forgiven for neglecting her household chores.

The 17-year-old has been busy.

One of the top female hockey players in her age group, Dunne led the United States Hockey Under-18 team to the gold medal at the International Ice Hockey Federation's World Championships in Buffalo earlier this month.

Her goal 51 seconds into overtime propelled the United States to a 3-2 win over Canada in the title game, giving the Americans their first U18 crown in four years.

A senior at The Fulton School in St. Albans, Dunne is not your typical teen. Her rapid on-ice development over the past year has put her on the fast track to the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea.

"It's something I've thought about all my life," Jincy said.

That dream of making the U.S. Olympic team is within reach.

A defenseman, Dunne has turned heads on the ice ever since taking up the sport at age 9. She spent much of her career playing on boys teams or competing against girls well above her age.

The 5-foot-7, 145-pounder moved into the national spotlight with her two-goal performance against Canada. The game-winning OT tally came on a wicked wrist shot from inside the faceoff circle. It triggered an on-ice celebration as well as pandemonium from the sellout crowd at HarborCenter.

The goal was replayed on ESPN and talked about at length in the days after the tournament.

"It was just so exciting to be a part of that," Dunne said. "It was fantastic for the whole team. And by team, I just don't mean players, but coaches, parents, staff and everyone who supported us.

"It was the best feeling in the world."

Dunne has always been an above-average player. But her three- goal, five-assist performance in five games on the world stage lofted her to a higher status.

USA U18 coach Joel Johnson had a talk with Dunne before the tournament. He said he felt his team captain was on the verge of something big.

"I told her I wanted people to remember this as the tournament where you stole the stage and showed that you were one of the best players in the world," he noted. …

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