PWHPA championship information—PHF weekend recap—Beanpot begins—must-click women’s hockey links
The IX: Hockey Friday with Eleni Demestihas, Feb. 10, 2023
Happy Friday! We’ve got a little bit to recap from the PWHPA, the PHF and the NCAA (Beans, anyone?)
The PWHPA had some representatives at the NHL All-Star Game last weekend, but I thought the NHL did them horribly dirty with the way they were talked about and utilized. It felt like, for the most part, they were there to be Vanna White figures. They did get to participate a little bit, but the way they were spoken about was genuinely insulting at times. It just feels to me like it’s high time we start demanding better from the NHL and from men’s leagues and teams in general. It’s no longer enough for the NHL to invite a few players and say, “Hey, would you believe it? Women play hockey too! And they’re not bad!” In fact in some ways it’s worse than nothing. If the NHL isn’t willing to incorporate them wholeheartedly and show some respect, why are we here?
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I am, of course, very glad we got to see Sarah Nurse score this sweet goal:
The PWHPA will be in Ontario this weekend, variously in Barrie, Kitchener, Niagara and Peterborough in partnership with their OHL teams. A few of them will also participate in a skills competition prior to the Leafs’ outdoor practice on Sunday, which is much more along the lines of what I mean when I talk about men’s teams being good partners.
The PWHPA has also announced the details of the Dream Gap Tour Championship, which will be held March 10, 11 and 12 in California (Anaheim, LA and Palm Springs respectively).
Tickets for the championship game are not yet available, but you can buy tickets for the other games at the link in the Twitter thread. With only four teams it’s hard to make predictions and everyone makes the ‘playoffs’ so to speak, but my bet is that Team Harvey’s wins the Secret Cup.
Last weekend saw some interesting PHF matchups. First the Riveters defeated the Whale in the shootout, thanks to Minttu (of course):
Buffalo lost 3-0 and 7-2 to Toronto, falling back into a skid of losses after managing a win against the Riveters the week before. One bright spot of the weekend, Madi Nichols scored her first PHF goal—otherwise, there really wasn’t much to be excited for as far as the Beauts are concerned. It’s been a tough season for them, and unless something drastic changes I don’t see it improving much. It’s brutal for the fans, but I really feel for the players, who are clearly unhappy and exhausted.
Toronto remains in close pursuit of Boston after that sweep, four points back and one game behind. Chuli recorded a 26-save shutout in the first game, and Carly Jackson got the win against her old team in the second. Daryl Watts scored her first PHF goal in the second game as well, and I have little doubt it’s the first of many in that sweater.
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Boston won both their games over the weekend, recording a 5-0 win over the Riveters and then a 5-2 win over Connecticut. Schroeder continues to rack up shutouts like it’s routine for her, despite often making 40+ saves. Luckily for the Whale, Minnesota swept Montreal (4-1 and 3-1), keeping Connecticut in what we are assuming is the playoff picture and separating Minnesota from Montreal in that top four.
On that note, it’s now February. The playoffs are supposed to happen in March, but the PHF has not released any details. I hate to be harsh, but that’s totally unacceptable. At this late stage you’re foregoing most ticket revenue from sales for those games because fans won’t know where to travel or when. You’re missing out on weeks of marketing opportunities and frustrating fans, players and their families. You would hope that by this far into the league’s existence they’d know this was something important to nail, but we don’t even know the format of the playoffs. It doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence in their ability to put on a good event for the finale of this season, and it’s really disappointing.
In the NCAA, it’s Beanpot season!
Northeastern beat BU last weekend in their semifinal 4-1, which means they’ll play for the championship this year. Northeastern’s top line made all the difference, with two goals from Alina Müller.
Then, BC shut out Harvard 3-0, with Olympian Cayla Barnes scoring the game-winner. A five-minute major really doomed Harvard, resulting in another goal for BC. Harvard was unable to claw their way back into the game, so BC will face Northeastern in the Championship game.
The Beanpot Championship game will be played on Valentine’s Day at Kelly Rink on BC’s campus. If you’re local, you can buy tickets here.
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