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Women’s Hockey in Boston: Where are we at?

More and more decisions are being made about sports for the remainder of 2020 (and beyond) so it’s time to look at where women’s hockey around Boston is at.

Boston College Athletics

Boston Pride

The Pride haven’t changed much since our last update. The league has made no new announcements about anything but there are questions in the air. With the general lack of improvement to the pandemic situation in the US, the border is likely to remain closed. What that means for international players and play for the newest member of the league, Toronto, is unknown at this time.

ECAC/Ivy League (Harvard)

There has been no official updates as to the fate of Ivy League Hockey as of yet but they were the first league to cancel Fall Semester sports. The league has announced there will definitely be no sports in the remainder of 2020 but nothing more concrete. The ECAC hasn’t made a decision as to their start date but with the Ivies being such a large percentage of the league you would think that they will play a major role in forcing the overall league’s hands.

Hockey East (Northeastern, Boston College, and Boston University)

The league has publicly affirmed their intention to play hockey at some point this season. They are pointing to their extremely compact geographic footprint as a reason why it is feasible for them. Questions about getting players on to campus are still not decided.

The league is considering a later start date and nothing is off the table as to when that will be. Like the Power 5 confefrences have been doing for football it seems ever more likely that a conference only slate for all conferences could be the path forward. What this would mean for the Beanpot is unknown, but there could be exceptions based on safety feasibility.

National Trends

As many have now seen both the PAC-12 and Big ten have cancelled all fall sports (PAC-12 has said no sports until at least January 1st like the Ivy). While neither conference has a direct effect on a Boston team the Big 10 sponsors a men’s conference and has many participants on the womens side, the PAC-12 is home to men’s independent Arizona State, and if the leagues shuts down all on campus athletics for the sports they sponsor it would seem unlikely that only the women’s hockey team would be allowed to continue.

Also three members of Hockey East have cancelled some or all fall sports, UMass and UConn have cancelled only football for now but Northeastern has cancelled all fall sports at this point. This might only be a starting point and there will be plenty more dominoes to fall.

This week the NCAA has cancelled all fall championships and have had their medical advisors say it is not safe at this time to return to collegiate athletics. While hockey is not directly effected it seems clear the status quo doesn’t look good.