(Photo Credits: Mary Schwalm/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)
By: Liz Rizzo | Follow me on Twitter @pastagrl88
Boston is the city of championships and boy are we spoiled here in the Northeast. In the world of professional hockey, the Boston Bruins have a long-storied history and despite the recent string of losses, the team is still leading their Division (although the team is mounting a nice comeback). While the Bruins are looking to continue to add more wins to their game, there is another Boston team that also leads in the standings.
With 13 wins and zero losses under their belt, the Boston Pride (the female counterpart to the B’s) are currently in first place in the league. Today they face the Connecticut Whale in their first game of a back-to back, hoping to remain undefeated. The Pride recently defeated the Buffalo Beauts 4-2 this past Sunday in a physical game that saw it go to overtime:
“We played hard and battled against a very physical team. We had high quality opportunities to score both nights so the chances were there, We had more energy and buzz…we knew it would be a gut–check kind of game. I’m proud of our teams’ effort and heart.
-Pride Captain Jillian Dempsey
The 2020 NWHL All-Star Weekend will be held at the Warrior Ice Arena in Boston, one of the original markets. The All-Star Game will consist of two 25-minute periods of four-on-four play. There will also be an All-Star Skills Challenge which will include the fastest skater and hardest shot competition. Commissioner Dani Rylan has chosen the first eight All-Stars with Dempsey and Kaleigh Fratkin of the Boston Pride being amongst those selected. Dempsey and Madison Packer (of the Metro Riveters) were chosen as captains.
“This is our way of celebrating eight women who have earned the adulation of fans and respect of their peers for their outstanding play and efforts for our league since day one..they have earned this moment in Boston for our landmark fifth NWHL All-Star Weekend.”
-President Dani Rylan
The celebration is the first one to be played in an existing NWHL market since the first All-Star Game in Buffalo. The Boston Pride are one of the first four teams of the NWHL, winning the inaugural Isobel Cup (named after the daughter of Lord Stanley and first known woman to play the game).
(Photo Credit: The Hockey News via NWHL/Twitter)
This past September, the Pride became the league’s first independently operated team when it was purchased by a team of investors. In an effort to grow the sport, the purchase was seen as significant as it would mean better investment for the team. Plans would include enhancing team/player development, marketing and promotion, hiring a team president and creating more youth hockey initiatives. Salary caps have also increased 50 percent for each team. The league has also partnered with Twitch, who has streamed all of the NWHL games.
Tickets are available to purchase for the upcoming All-Star event by visiting the NWHL website. The event will be held from February 8th-9th and will feature 32 All-Stars: 14 skaters and two goaltenders for each team.