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Women’s Hockey Wednesday: Florence Schelling skates into the history books

As well, NWHL free agency and CWHL draft registration are now open.

Ice Hockey - Winter Olympics Day 5 - Sweden v Switzerland Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Story of the week

Retirement Announcement from Florence Schelling
Dear Hockey, After 25 years of playing hockey, it is now time for me to retire from this incredible sport and move on to a new chapter in my life.

Florence Schelling announces her retirement from hockey - swisshockeynews.ch

Swiss legend retires - IIHF

When Florence Schelling announced her retirement last week at the age of 29, I wasn’t shocked. Saddened, yes—full disclosure, I named a stuffed husky after the woman, there’s an emotional attachment there—but not shocked. The lull after the Olympics usually comes with retirement announcements as players re-evaluate their lives and decide if they’re going to commit to another four-year Olympic cycle, and Schelling was one of the players who I’d thought might hang them up. It’s sad to see a player retire in the prime of her career, but the lifestyle of an elite women’s hockey player is a hard, time-consuming one and comes with very little financial compensation for the tremendous amount of work. However, she certainly left quite a legacy.

As her own retirement post states, Schelling has played hockey for 25 years, and was first recruited by the senior national team at thirteen (thirteen!). She’s appeared in ten top-level World Championships and four straight Olympics, highlighted by winning two bronze medals (one at Worlds in 2012, one at the Sochi Olympics) and Tournament MVP with Switzerland in Sochi. She retired with a record-setting ten Olympic wins and five Olympic shutouts after her performance in Pyeongchang. Wherever she’s played—the NCAA, the CWHL, the SDHL, international hockey—she has impressed. Even though the Hockey Hall of Fame has a several-decades-long backlog of women waiting to be inducted, Schelling is first-ballot caliber. Watching her in Korea, it was obvious that she was as sharp as ever, and a major contributor to Switzerland managing a fifth-place finish.

When I read through Schelling’s retirement announcement, I was struck by this line:

The coach of the senior national team called and wanted me to go to a camp. I was 13 at that time. I didn’t know that there is a women’s national team in Switzerland, so I first thought it was a joke.

A lot has changed since that phone call. Florence Schelling’s brilliance has brought Switzerland international notice, and set the stage for the next generation of Swiss women’s players. As sad as we are to see her go, she can retire from hockey with two bronze medals and the confidence that hockey-playing girls in Switzerland know all about the women’s national team.

International

National team player Anja Stiefel puts an end to her hockey career - swisshockeynews.ch
After eleven years in the best leagues of Sweden, Canada, and Switzerland, 180 games for the national team, a bronze medal at the Olympics and one at the World Championships, Anja Stiefel has decided to retire and focus on her job instead.

In Ukraine, created the women's ice hockey team | The Siver Post
The Executive Committee of the FCS adopted a decision to establish the national women’s team of Ukraine on hockey, which this season will debut in the international arena.

CWHL

CWHL: New Draft Format Puts Prospects in Control
Registration for the 2018 CWHL Draft opened on June 1, with one major format change announced: Between July 1 and August 17, general managers will be able to pre-sign their first- and second-round draft selections.

Delayne Brian retires from CWHL - The Ice Garden
The Clarkson Cup MVP and champion announced her retirement via Twitter on Wednesday.

Athlètes à temps partiel - La Presse+
La situation des athlètes s’est améliorée, constate Emmanuelle Blais, qui entamera sa neuvième saison avec les Canadiennes à l’automne. Elle se souvient du temps où les joueuses devaient payer le trans

CWHL champs Markham Thunder honoured by Justin Trudeau in Ottawa - Sportsnet.ca
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau welcomed the CHWL-champion Markham Thunder to Parliament Hill on Monday.

NWHL

NWHL and SDHL to meet in Champions Cup in Sweden - The Ice Garden
The Riveters will travel to Sweden to take on Luleå Hockey/MSSK

2018 NWHL Free Agency Tracker - The Ice Garden
Your convenient one-stop shop for all the NWHL signing news. So far, only the Beauts and Riveters have made any signings, with Amanda Kessel being the first USWNT player to sign.

Beauts first signing brings big news - Die By The Blade
Nik Fattey joins Beauts as third GM in franchise history.

Paul Mara Named Head Coach of Boston Pride - The Ice Garden
The former NHL defenseman and assistant coach of Team USA’s gold-medal winning team from the PyeongChang Olympics is Pride’s third coach

Amanda Kessel returns to the NWHL, re-signs with the Metropolitan Riveters - The Ice Garden
Kessel is the first member of Team USA’s gold medal winning team to sign an NWHL contract this offseason.

Whitecaps Free Agent Wish List for Summer of ’18
With the husband and wife duo of Robb and Shivaun Stauber now named as the team's new coaches, the Minnesota Whitecaps are ready to take on NWHL Free Agency by storm.

2017 NWHL Draft Class: Pride and Beauts - The Ice Garden
With free agency just around the corner, it’s time to take a closer look at the senior seasons of the 2017 NWHL Draft class.

2017 NWHL Draft Class: Whale and Riveters - The Ice Garden
With free agency just around the corner, it’s time to take a closer look at the senior seasons of the 2018 NWHL Draft class.

Was Janine Weber a bust in Boston? - The Ice Garden
Big things were expected of the star Austrian forward when she signed with the Pride.

U Sports

Lauriane Rougeau Returns to Stingers Coaching Staff | Sports – The Link
After spending a year away from Concordia, it was announced on Wednesday that Lauriane Rougeau will be returning to her position as an assistant coach for the Stinger Women’s Hockey team.

Roxanne Kis hangs up the skates - swisshockeynews.ch
Kis went to Canada last year to study economics at the University and play for the local hockey team.

NCAA

Boston College Women’s Hockey’s Daryl Watts Wins BCI’s Award for Female Rookie of the Year - BC Interruption

Watts would win a lot of these awards if she were eligible to win more than one of them

The IX: Hockey Friday with Erica Ayala, May 25, 2018
Featuring an interview with Maura Crowell

Making a mark at THE school of her dreams | TheSpec.com
You’ve probably heard of it. “THE” Ohio State University.

LIU Brooklyn to add NCAA Division I women’s hockey program in 2019-20 - The Ice Garden
Women’s college hockey continues to expand

European club hockey

EIHA (England) WOMEN’S LEAGUES: Queen Bees perfect end to perfect season; Trophy Weekend roundup
Bracknell Queen Bees added the Bill Britton Trophy to their Elite League title and finished a perfect season with 21 wins from 21 games played.