Jessica Campbell came to Cornell by way of Saskatchewan after a successful U18 campaign for the Canadian National team. When she entered Cornell, she was one of the few forwards in her year and this year will be the lone forward in the senior class. Campbell started off her first year strong, with 4 goals in her opening weekend as a player, all in a single game. Her skill was apparent. Even through battling injuries, Campbell, one of the fastest players on the ice, contributed both to the score sheet as well as to the chemistry on the team. She notched 26 points in her freshman campaign. In spite of an injury that saw her miss the ECAC championship game, Campbell was a crucial part of ensuring that Cornell earned its second ECAC championship. She came back the following year as an incredibly important part of an offensive onslaught that saw the Big Red retain their dominance in the league and the country. Always an energetic player, whenever Campbell stepped on the ice, the crowd knew momentum was going to swing in favor of the Big Red. One particularly noteworthy contribution was her tally to start a Cornell rally against BU that led to a triple-overtime game and an eventual Cornell win and trip to the Frozen Four. As a junior, it was clear that Campbell brought a whole new level of competition to her game. She may not have surpassed her freshman point total, but she scored a career-high 16 goals and her goals were nothing if not pivotal ones. Campbell scored three shorthanded goals, due as much to her puck-handling skills as her incredible speed, but what is most impressive was her knack for scoring game-winning goals. Almost one-third of Campbell's goals in her penultimate season were game winners. Not to be forgotten, she scored the final goal of the ECAC Tournament to put Cornell ahead of Harvard to win its third ECAC championship in a tight game.
What to Expect
Campbell's leadership on and off the ice is apparent both in how she carries herself as well as how she gives 100% every second of every shift. Before coming to Cornell, Campbell served in leadership roles both for Team Saskatchewan as well as Team Canada. This year, she will serve as co-captain along with fellow senior Alyssa Gagliardi. Campbell's speed makes her a huge asset to the team this year, with key losses up front as well as behind the blue line. Her speed and presence on the penalty kill will be a huge asset early on in teaching the six-member freshman class what is expected of a Cornell player as well as by contributing to the team in a huge way. Coach Derraugh has long asserted that Jessica Campbell is one of the fastest players in Division I hockey and this author has to agree. The speed at which she makes decisions as well as can sprint down the ice is incomparable and will be a key component to helping the Big Red in a season when people are doubting them. As a player, she will need to continue her pace in terms of contributions and moreover keep her penchants for scoring game-winning goals. The hunger and drive will be a huge asset to the young team. Additionally, her background in playing in three ECAC and NCAA Tournaments, and winning two ECAC championships will be huge in terms of helping the freshmen know what is expected of a Cornell team. Expect great things of co-captain Jessica Campbell this year. She has given these fans no reason to believe otherwise.
A Look Back
The number eight had been worn 13 times before co-captain Jessica Campbell donned the sweater. None, however, are more fitting to look back at than the woman who first threw on the jersey in 1976. Cynthia Schlaepfer was a member of Cornell in its infancy. She helped lead the team to three consecutive Ivy championships while a player. Schlaepfer, an Ithaca native, was one of the key players of her time, contributing both by scoring and by leadership. Schlaepfer was in the top two for scoring all three of her varsity years, finishing first as a junior and second during her sophomore and senior seasons, and holding quite a few Cornell women's hockey records including the number four all-time spot for scoring (199 career points), goals (95, just recently surpassed by Rebecca Johnston), as well as the third spot for assists (104, which Brianne Jenner will look to break during her ultimate season). She is the outright leader in the category of assists per game. Anyone who saw her play wouldn't be surprised by any of these facts, given that she set the record for goals (seven), assists (nine), and points (13) in a game during her time there, most of which haven't been touched since then. In addition to records, Schlaepfer was also a key player in terms of leadership. She co-captained the team as both a junior and senior, helping lead them to three Ivy championships while a student, in Cornell's record-breaking consecutive Ivy titles. She contributed to three of Cornell's six-consecutive titles. The owner of seven hat tricks in a single season and member of the lacrosse team as a senior, Cynthia Schlaepfer was inducted in the Cornell Athletics Hall of Fame as part of the induction class of 1985. A lot of similarities are seen in the two forwards who donned the number eight, but none more than their tenacity. Jessica Campbell's speed, skill, and grit are a testament to the number eight.