The student news site of Patchogue-Medford High School

The Red & Black

The student news site of Patchogue-Medford High School

The Red & Black

The student news site of Patchogue-Medford High School

The Red & Black

A New Era for Women’s Hockey

PWHL NY vs Boston as UBS Arena. Photo courtesy of M. Sullivan

The Professional Women’s Hockey League, or PWHL for short, is a new league for professional women’s hockey players. The league was created to allow female players to play professionally outside of small leagues or the Olympics, of which many players in the PWHL have won gold medals.

Since this is the first season, the league currently has only six teams: three representing the United States and three representing Canada. The six teams are Boston, New York, Minneapolis, Toronto, Ottawa, and Montreal. Hopefully, there will be even more teams in future seasons of the PWHL when there are more fans and funding.

None of the teams have official logos yet and are referred to as just their city names. This is because the league decided they would rather let the women start playing than spend more months drawing mascot ideas or thinking of team names, all of which will be decided on at a later point.

Since the PWHL began, they have been able to break the record for most fans in attendance at a women’s hockey game multiple times. This is a great sign for the PWHL, as it demonstrates how women’s professional sports can draw in crowds in order to get more sponsorships and funding.

Before the PWHL, women hockey players were paid an average of $20,000 for playing in a professional league. This is significantly less than the average of 3.5 million dollars for being in the NHL. While the PWHL pays players an average of $60,000 currently, it is a positive improvement and speaks to the growing popularity and respect for women’s sports.

Seeing female hockey players get recognized in the professional world has been inspiring for many young girls. At every single PWHL game, there are always an abundance of girls in the crowd who are dreaming of being able to play on a professional team as well, something that used to be unattainable for many.

The PWHL also shocked many fans when they established a clear penalty rule that follows the NHL regarding fighting on the ice. Typically, women’s hockey leagues do not allow any form of aggression or contact with other players. This means that, unlike the NHL, the women weren’t allowed to hit each other or get into fights.

However, the PWHL operates just like the NHL does and claims that they aren’t going to call any penalties for something that wouldn’t be a penalty in the NHL. Not only are the fans happy about this, but the players are as well. The women love to finally show their aggression and play hockey as they always wanted to.

Minnesota player Maddie Rooney, who plays goalie, says, “I expect it’s going to be very physically intense and just great overall talent…” when she was asked what she expected for the inaugural season.

Another Minnesota player, Taylor Heise, who plays forward, said, “We’re going to go out and give our best efforts every single week…” when asked the same question as Maddie Rooney.

As a female hockey fan and player, I find it inspiring to see the PWHL players in action. They prove that not only is there a place for women in hockey, but there is a place for women in all sports.

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About the Contributor
Allyson McGowan, Staff Writer
Class of 2025. Loves reading, writing, and watching movies. Fears sharks and giant bugs. Wishes buying books wasn't so expensive.

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