The Toronto Six have hit the midway mark of the 2022-2023 season with plenty of reasons to be proud of what they’ve accomplished thus far. From the standings to individual player statistics, they have consistently proven that they are a team to be feared in the league. The first half of the season has seen entertaining match-ups against old rivals the Boston Pride and new Canadian rivals the Montreal Force, and an explosion of offense from a new player to the PHF. With another free agent signing unveiled this week, Toronto is prepared to enter the home stretch as a dominant group ready to make a push for the Isobel Cup.
Currently, the Six are second in the standings, three points behind Boston, with one less game played. Minnesota, who are enjoying a four-game winning streak, is one point back of Toronto with two more games played. Toronto themselves were winners in their last five contests, keeping pace with an offensively-charged Pride squad. The Six are also undefeated in regulation at home since they began playing at Canlan York last season, only suffering one overtime defeat to the Riveters in December. Not only are they defending home ice well, but the Six are also known for consistently winning the second game of their back-to-backs, going 6-0 this season in the second game of their double-headers.
Toronto was in Boston back in November for their first match-up of the campaign against the reigning Isobel champions and faced arguably their toughest test of the season. Despite facing a team with some of the PHF’s most terrifying scoring threats (four players currently have more than ten points after 13 games played) and a goalie that began the season with three consecutive shutouts, the Six managed a regulation win and an overtime loss, scoring a total of nine goals on the weekend. The PHF’s first Canadian squad also got to square off with the newest kids on the block, facing off against Montreal in Rimouski, Quebec. Both games were tight match-ups, with the first game needing a shootout to decide the winner. Toronto managed to sweep the weekend and earn five of a possible six points in the standings, leaving La Belle Province having solidified an entertaining Canadian rivalry.
On the scoresheet, Toronto’s offense has not suffered despite the loss of last year’s leading scorer, Mykyla Grant-Mentis. The 2021-2022 team averaged 3.3 goals per game during the regular season. This year, that number currently sits at 3.58 goals per game. A huge reason for this stat is new Six forward Brittany Howard, who has scored nearly 28% of her team’s goals. The 27-year-old leads the PHF with 12 tallies at a goal-per-game rate. Defender Kati Tabin has also been quietly adding to the offense, notching nine assists, which is good for fifth overall in the league. And while Elaine Chuli’s numbers are a bit off from the ones that earned her Goaltender of the Year honors last season, she is still 7-1-2 on the year and consistently gives her team a chance to win against any opponent faced. As if the current make-up of the roster wasn’t dominant enough, the Six just signed NCAA Patty Kazmaier winner Daryl Watts to a two-year contract. Watts, who is second all-time in scoring for the NCAA, will add even more scoring power for Toronto as they head into their weekend match-up with Connecticut.
There are many reasons for players and fans alike to believe this team can achieve the ultimate goal – the Isobel Cup. Saturday will be Toronto’s first test against the Whale this season, and the group is looking for a pair of wins to take them into the All-Star break. This year’s All-Star game will be held in Toronto and features eight members of the Six, playing in front of their home crowd.