In a similar fashion to which they both entered, American sensations Monique and Jocelyne Lamoureux announced their retirements from competition on Tuesday morning.
Doing so with a column in The Players’ Tribune, the twin-duo made the joint decision after 14 years years with the U.S. National Women’s Team. Ending their careers side-by-side, the Grand Forks natives leave a powerful legacy, one full of medals and a lifetime of memories.
For the sisters, their heroism started early, as they both helped the Shattuck-St. Mary’s hockey program en route to its first ever girls’ hockey championship. While they did accomplished this feat as teenagers, it only helped set the tone for the damage they would do as professional hockey players.
Reflecting on their time with the National Team, the tandem managed to secure six championships and Olympic silvers in both Vancouver and Sochi. While inching closer and closer towards a title, they finished on the strongest note possible, with a gold medal victory in Pyeongchang, South Korea. They did so together, as they always intended.
Walking back down memory lane, both were significant contributors in the championship game in which they faced the Canadians. Winning 3-2 in the shootout, it was Monique who scored the game-tying goal, as the clock died down with less than seven minutes left.
Making their mark in crucial moments, it was Lamoureux-Davidson who finished what they started, as she scored in the shootout, marking history for USA Hockey. That led the United States to its second title at the Olympic Games. The U.S. last secured a gold medal at the Nagano Games back in 1998.
Since 2018, they’ve only made one appearance, which they did last year during a three-game Rivalry Series. Following those games against Hockey Canada, both stepped away from hockey and entered parenting, as they gave birth to boys.
Doing almost everything together, they said in a statement released by USA Hockey, “Our dream since as long as we could remember was to wear the red, white and blue and become Olympic champions together. As twins, our hockey career and lives will forever be intertwined, so it is only fitting that we are retiring together as well.”
Now, as they prepare for a new chapter, it’s one full of family that both proudly embrace. While they won’t forget the trails they’ve paved, Lamoureux-Davidson explained about this process in The Players’ Tribune, “When we both started to think about retirement, I’d think about all the goals we had set out to accomplish throughout our careers. We have crossed off most of those. And the ones we came up short on? We learned from those experiences and did our best along the way.”
Speaking on her personal achievements and the strides they both made for the pro women’s game, she added, “I can look at myself in the mirror and be proud. Proud of myself, my sister, and the teams I was a part of. Even though our playing days have come to a close, I know our roles as leaders in the game of hockey aren’t coming to an end any time soon.”
With Jocelyne a sitting board member with the PWHPA, she now takes her on ice accomplishments and transitions them off ice to create a viable women’s league. Speaking with the media on Tuesday, Lamoureux-Davidson added on the choice to make a difference, “In the pursuit of being great as an athlete we realized the pursuit of being a great person and great advocate in that process.”
On the other hand, Monique Lamoureux-Morando is due in five weeks to deliver another baby. While adding to her growing family, she mentioned that the prospect of balancing both a family and playing career was a factor in their decision. As Jocelyne and Monique formally announce they’re retirements, they’re revered as trailblazers for the U.S. National Women’s Team.
Speaking further to that on Tuesday, Angela Ruggiero said of her former teammates, “I call them my little sisters… (They are) fierce, competitive, clutch, great teammates, and good people and role models for the next generation.”
Looking at Monique alone as a player, it’s worth mentioning that she stands alone as the only player to be an All-Star as a defender (2015, 2016, 2017) and a forward (2012) in IIHF Women’s World Championship history. She also received Best Forward honours at the 2011 World Championship.
Numbers-wise, Monique and Jocelyne were as close in range as they are in person. Lamoureux-Davidson amassed 138 points, recording 63 goals along with 75 assists. She did so in 137 games. Not too far off in each category, Lamoureux-Morando amassed 143 points, recording 62 goals along with 81 assists. She put up these totals through 135 games.
Opting to jointly hang up the skates, they do so just a year ahead of the 2022 Olympics being hosted in Beijing. The games are scheduled to kick off next year on February 4th. While the two were a force to be reckoned with, they made as big an impact on teammates as they did opponents, and especially, their rivals.
With the list including Jayna Hefford, she took to Twitter to commend their careers. “Congratulations Jocelyne and Monique – we’ve relentlessly battled for years, and now are on the same team moving the sport forward with the PWHPA – the impact you will leave on the sport is only getting bigger. Much respect.”
Playing an important part in gender equity through their illustrious careers, Pat Kelleher, USA Hockey executive director, said on Tuesday about the examples both set, “Monique and Jocelyne were fierce competitors, and their desire to win was evident every time they wore the USA jersey. They have been a big part of the success of our program for many years. We thank them for their passion and dedication, and wish them nothing but the very best in the future.”
Committed to further growing the game, both Jocelyne and Monique ensured this wouldn’t be the last of them. “It is the right time for us to step away from the game as players but we will remain in hockey in some capacity moving forward. Thank you to all of our teammates, coaches & fans who have supported us during our hockey journey.”
Exiting on their own terms, they will long be recognized as ambassadors for women’s hockey. As stated by Jocelyne in The Players’ Tribune, “We fell in love with this game together … it’s right that we go out together.”