PHF News Round-Up

We’re currently in the week leading up to the PHF All-Star Game in Toronto, Ontario, with only one game on the schedule before the event – Montreal in Connecticut on Friday. After a high-scoring and, at times, emotional weekend of games, it’s time to enjoy some news before many of the PHF’s best meet at the old Maple Leaf Gardens on Sunday.

Last weekend saw six teams in action, with every team earning one win each. In the Toronto/Connecticut match-up, the Six found victory in the first game with an outpouring of offense, while the Whale won on day two thanks to special teams and stellar goaltending. Jumping from Ontario to Quebec, Montreal hosted Boston, where the Pride took game one thanks to Loren Gabel’s record-tying four-goal performance and Corinne Schroeder’s sixth shutout on the season. On Sunday, the Force took the first place Boston to overtime. After a scary injury to Christine Deaudelin requiring a stretcher, Jade Downie-Landry scored the game-winner 22 seconds into the resulting powerplay. Deaudelin will be re-evaluated, and no further information has been provided at this time. Down south, Metropolitan and Buffalo faced off, both trying to end their respective losing streaks. The Beauts managed to snap their 10-game streak first with a 4-1 performance, and the Riveters joined in on the fun on day two with a landslide of offense that resulted in a lopsided 8-2 final.

The PHF named their three stars of the week, and the top goal scorers in the league took the clean sweep. Gabel, Kennedy Marchment of the Whale, and Brittany Howard of the Six combined for 14 goals (due to scheduling, Marchment played four goals on the week) and together have eight appearances on the three stars of the week list.

Another announcement from the PHF was the naming of the captains for the upcoming All-Star game. This year’s format will have three teams: Team Canada, Team USA, and Team World. Leading Team Canada will be Boston Pride defender Kaleigh Fratkin, a member of the league for all eight seasons and no stranger to the All-Star game. Team USA has selected Riveters captain Madison Packer to lead their group for the showcase on Sunday. Packer, like Fratkin, has been in the league since its inception and has previous All-Star game experience. Rounding out the group is Whale forward Kateřina Mrázová, who will be captaining Team World while experiencing her first All-Star event. Mrázová returned to the PHF this season after suiting up for the Whale in the 2018-2019 campaign. The three teams will compete in a round-robin competition starting at 7:00 p.m. EST.

In record-breaking news, Toronto Six newcomer Daryl Watts signed on with the club for the remainder of this season and next season last week. She has now disclosed her salary, which comes in at $150,000 US per season. The contract now makes her the highest-paid female player in professional hockey. Watts, the 23-year-old forward from Toronto, brings with her an offensive talent to an already deep squad. Her point total during her career in the NCAA is good for second-most all-time. She is also the first freshman to win the Patty Kazmaier award for the top female college hockey player of the year. The signing and contract can be attributed to the salary cap increase, which will double to $1.5 million per next team season. This contract is another huge step forward for women playing professional hockey and the goal of earning a livable wage from the sport.

After an eventful week around the league, make sure to catch Montreal face Connecticut on Friday night at 7:00 p.m. EST on ESPN+ and TSN+, and tune into the All-Star game Sunday night on ESPN2 and TSN.

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Courtney Adams

Covering the PHF/The Toronto Six for Inside the Rink

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