Two members of the Merrimack College women’s ice hockey program will begin their professional careers overseas this summer, as recent graduates Samantha Ridgewell and Dominique Kremer have signed contracts to play for Djurgardens IF of the SDHL (Swedish Women’s Hockey League). The duo will begin its tenure with the program this summer, per team release.
Kremer and Ridgewell are the first two players in program history to sign with a team in the SDHL, which is beginning its twelfth season as one of the most impressive women’s leagues in Europe.
“We are excited that Sam and Dominique will continue their playing careers with D.I.F. in Sweden for the upcoming season,” said former head coach Erin Hamlen. “Both have been tremendous representatives of Merrimack Women’s Hockey on and off the ice, and we appreciate all that they contributed to our program. Playing in Sweden is another tremendous opportunity to showcase their talents on a different continent.”
Inaugural members of the program, both teammates grew to form one of the best defenses in Hockey East, helping the Warriors to its second postseason berth and highest regular season finish in program history.
Ridgewell wrapped up her collegiate career with a senior season that put her near the top of every statistical category in Division I. She finished atop Hockey East and seventh in the country in save percentage (.936), and holds the program record for shutouts in a single season (5). She was also a two-time Hockey East goaltender of the week, and was the first Hockey East player of the month for the 2018-19 season. A Hockey East Second-Teamer, she was the runner-up for the league’s goaltender of the year award.
After being chosen in the third round of the 2018 National Women’s Hockey League Draft, Dominique Kremer was one of the most impressive blue-liners in the league last season. A Hockey East Third-Team all-star selection, she led the team in blocked shots (83) and tallied 19 points on the season (7g, 12a), the most among any defensemen on the team.