New England Women's Hockey Alliance.jpg

The New England Women's Hockey Alliance is a women's collegiate hockey conference that started as an informal scheduling partnership for the 2017-18 season.

Origins of the conference[edit | edit source]

The Franklin Pierce Ravens, Holy Cross Crusaders, St. Anselm Hawks and St. Michael's Purple Knights all became independents for 2017-18 as a result of the New England Hockey Conference adopting a Division III only membership policy. Holy Cross is Division I in all other sports, including men's ice hockey, and the others are all Division II schools as members of the Northeast-10 Conference, which does not sponsor women's ice hockey.

The Post University Eagles, which had been playing as an Independent Division II women's ice hockey team, announced it would enter into a scheduling alliance for the 2017-18 season with the five other NCAA women's independent programs (Holy Cross Crusaders, Sacred Heart Pioneers, Franklin Pierce Ravens, St. Anselm Hawks and St. Michael's Purple Knights).

The Sacred Heart Pioneers continued to play as a Division I Independent while joining the scheduling alliance for 2017-18.

The Holy Cross Crusaders would join Hockey East for the 2018-19 season.

On September 10, 2018, the Brooklyn campus of Long Island University, known for sports purposes as LIU Brooklyn, announced that it would start a varsity women's hockey team in the 2019–20 season. Later that month on September 26, the NEWHA announced its intent to be recognized as an NCAA National Collegiate women's hockey conference.[1] This was quickly followed by LIU's announcement that it would merge its two athletic programs—the Division I LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds and Division II LIU Post Pioneers—into a single Division I athletic program that eventually became known as the LIU Sharks. The NCAA officially recognized the NEWHA upon LIU's arrival in 2019. The conference will receive its first automatic bid to the NCAA Division I Women's Ice Hockey Championship in the 2021–22 season, contingent on the six current members continuing to play in the NEWHA.

On January 29, 2020 the conference announced it would be expanding for the 2021-22 season with the addition of the Stonehill Skyhawks who are adding women's ice hockey. Stonehill College is located in Easton, Massachusetts. The team will be based out of the Bridgewater Ice Arena in nearby Bridgewater, Massachusetts.[2] The addition of Stonehill, which will give the NEWHA seven members, was originally planned to take place in the same season in which the NEWHA is slated to receive its first automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Due to issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic the university would announce on September 11, 2020 that it would be delaying the start of its program until the 2022-23 season.[3]

Member Teams[edit | edit source]

Team Location Arena Joined
Franklin Pierce Ravens Rindge, New Hampshire
(campus)
Winchendon, Massachusetts
(practice and games)
Jason Ritchie Ice Arena 2017
LIU Sharks Brooklyn and Brookville, New York
(campuses)
Syosset and East Meadow, New York
(practice and games)
Islanders Iceworks and Northwell Health Ice Center 2019
Post University Eagles Waterbury, Connecticut
(campus)
Shelton, Connecticut
(practice and games)
Sports Center of Connecticut 2017
Sacred Heart Pioneers Fairfield, Connecticut
(campus)
Shelton, Connecticut
(practice and games)
Sports Center of Connecticut 2017
Saint Anselm Hawks Goffstown, New Hampshire Sullivan Arena 2017
St. Michael's Purple Knights Colchester, Vermont
(campus)
South Burlington, Vermont
(practice and games)
C. Douglas Cairns Recreation Arena 2017

Future Member[edit | edit source]

Team Location Arena Notes
Stonehill Skyhawks Easton, Massachusetts
(campus)
Bridgewater, Massachusetts
(practice and games)
Bridgewater Ice Arena joining for 2022-23 season

Former Member[edit | edit source]

Team Location Arena Tenure Fate
Holy Cross Crusaders Worcester, Massachusetts Hart Center 2017-18 Join Hockey East for 2018-19

Seasons[edit | edit source]

Season Regular Season Champion Tournament Champion
2017-18 Saint Anselm Hawks Saint Anselm Hawks
2018-19 Saint Anselm Hawks Saint Anselm Hawks
2019-20 Sacred Heart Pioneers LIU Sharks
2020-21 No regular season schedule LIU Sharks

References[edit | edit source]

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