PHF News & Signings

It’s been a while since I’ve broken down PHF news, so here we go:

Boston Pride:

The Boston Pride received their beautiful championship rings, commemorating their Isobel Cup win against the Minnesota Whitecaps.

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Metropolitan Riveters:

Shatalova played 23 games for the Riveters, scoring 2 goals and adding 10 assists for 12 points on the year.

Kosecka was the International Draft Pick for the Riveters. Here is what I wrote about her on draft night.

5- Metropolitan Riveters – Romana Kosecka, SKP Bratislava

The Slovakian forward brings a lot of international experience, as well as playing experience at SKP Bratislava. She has played 84 games for the club, amassing 14 goals and adding 22 assists for 36 points. She also has experience playing in Sweden, where she played 24 games, tallying 17 goals and adding 9 assists for 26 points.

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Toronto Six:

The Six announced the signing of a defender for their Season 7 roster.

You can check out the full press release here:

TORONTO SIX SECURE STAR DEFENDER CRISTINE CHAO

by Justin Levine

Toronto, ON- The Toronto Six added their third free agent on Wednesday morning, signing former Toronto Varsity Blues star Cristine Chao to her first professional contract.

“I graduated two years ago from the University of Toronto, and honestly, I think I did want to continue playing hockey, but I graduated right in the middle of COVID, so I just thought there weren’t many opportunities that came up,” the defender said. “When this opportunity to play for the Toronto Six came up, I was excited. I was fired up and I said, ‘Hey, you know what, I love this sport, I love hockey, I want to continue my career’, and here I am.”

Chao becomes the seventeenth player to sign with the Six for 2021-22 and the fifth product of U SPORTS to sign a PHF contract for the league’s seventh season. Skating with the OUA’s University of Toronto Varsity Blues, Chao graduated a McCaw Cup champion in 2020, capping her five seasons in the women’s hockey program. The 24-year-old is a two-time OUA Defender of the Year, winning in 2019 and 2020, was named the 2019 Most Sportsmanlike Player, and received all-star recognition in four straight seasons after earning All-Rookie honours in 2016. She played in 24 games during her final 2019-20 season, where she recorded 13 points to bring her collegiate totals to 69 points in 119 career contests. From 2015-20, Chao played against new Six teammate Taylor Davison, who Toronto picked fifth overall in the the 2021 NWHL Draft from York University.

“We are very excited to be adding Cristine Chao to our group as we enter our first full season in the PHF,” said Digit Murphy, President of the Toronto Six. “Cristine has durability and experience playing game in and game out at the University of Toronto the last four seasons which will be an invaluable asset to our team. Her successful career in U SPORTS, and her leadership on and off the ice made her a natural addition to the Toronto Six. She will be an important addition to our roster in our quest for the Isobel Cup.”

Prior to attending post-secondary, the Rotman Commerce graduate played with the Toronto Aeros in the Provincial Women’s Hockey League. During her lone season in 2014-15, the Toronto native amassed 20 points, racking up six goals, while adding 14 assists.

Chao joins a defensive core that already includes the likes of Davison, Saroya Tinker, Lindsay Eastwood, Emma Greco and Sarah Steele. Standing at five-foot-two, she becomes the fifteenth Canadian to sign with the Six for 2021-22.

Ready to begin a new chapter while keeping it local, Chao says she can’t wait to compete and grow chemistry with all her teammates.

“I’m two years out of playing a real hockey game, so I’m just excited to go out there and play against the best female hockey players there are,” she said. “It’s just the games that I look forward to, or even the interactions with everyone. So far, they’re a great group of girls, every single one of them is very nice, and I think we have the capabilities to win an Isobel Cup.”

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Minnesota Whitecaps:

The Whitecaps made their first signing of the offseason, bringing back one of their key forwards.

You can check out the full press release here:

TWO-TIME ALL-STAR THUNSTROM REJOINS THE WHITECAPS

St. Paul, MN- One of the Whitecaps’ most electrifying players will be suiting up for the team again next season.

The speedy Allie Thunstrom has re-signed with Minnesota for the upcoming 2021-22 Premier Hockey Federation season, which will be her fourth season with the Whitecaps and her third in the PHF/NWHL.

“Having the opportunity to wear a Whitecaps jersey again is an honor I don’t take lightly – I have dreamed of being a professional hockey player since the moment I put skates on for the first time,” said Thunstrom. “I’m so excited to have another opportunity to take the ice with my friends and the best teammates in front of the best fans in the country. I can’t wait to be back at TRIA representing the State of Hockey and welcoming ALL hockey fans – everyone has a place at our rink.”

Thunstrom has been lights out since joining the Whitecaps, and PHF fans will be thrilled to see her back on the ice this season. The Maplewood, MN native became the first PHF/NWHL player to score 20 goals in a single season, and currently holds the PHF/NWHL record for most goals in a season with 24. In her professional career, Thunstrom has scored 45 points (29G, 16A). She’s a two-time NWHL all-star, was named co-MVP with Jillian Dempsey in the 2019-20 season, and also won the NWHL Foundation Award for the Whitecaps in 2020. The 33-year-old was also a part of Minnesota’s Isobel Cup winning team in 2018-19.

“As everyone can see when they attend a Whitecaps game is Allie’s speed, it’s fun to watch,” said Minnesota co-head coach Ronda Engelhardt. “For season 7, we know we will see that same speed and a player who wants to get to the net to score.”

The 5’5” forward played her college hockey at Boston College, where she appeared in all 141 games in her career. During her freshman year, she led the Eagles in scoring 30 goals, also the second-best in the nation. She finished with an NCAA best six shorthanded goals, and was fifth overall in rookie scoring, earning her a berth on the Hockey East All-Star First Team and the All-Rookie Team. She was named to the Hockey East All-Star Second Team both her junior and senior year, and finished her NCAA career with a total of 139 points (86G, 53A).

“Although last year wasn’t the season we had hoped for – we missed TRIA and the electric environment our fans provide – we were incredibly grateful for the league, sponsors, investors, and fans for making the Isobel Cup Playoffs happen in Boston, live on NBCSN. It was a historic moment for professional women’s hockey in the US and a very special experience I will never forget,” said Thunstrom. “Here’s to an even better season 7, with ALL OF YOU by our side and on the glass.”

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