The NWHL has announced the second installment of its Jr. NWHL Summer Clinic Series. This time, the league is partnering with the Tampa Bay Lightning to host a clinic that will be coached by Taylor Accursi of the Buffalo Beauts and Mallory Souliotis of the Boston Pride. The clinic will be held on Friday, Aug. 16, at the Brandon Ice Sports Forum in Tampa, Fla.
This will be the first summer clinic with an NHL affiliation. Another clinic was held on June 29 in Raleigh, N.C., with Colleen Murphy of the Connecticut Whale as its coach.
This series isn’t the league’s first foray into youth development. Players Madison Packer, Brittany Ott, Taylor Marchin, Jillian Dempsey, and Rebecca Russo hosted an outdoor clinic for over 40 girls in Detroit this past February.
Tampa’s new involvement in the league’s girls’ program comes after two NHL teams have revoked previous ties to the NWHL. In May, the New Jersey Devils dissolved their affiliation with the Metropolitan Riveters and Buffalo Sabres owner Pegula Sports and Entertainment returned Buffalo Beauts ownership to the league. The Boston Bruins have maintained their affiliation, and it is unknown whether the Minnesota Wild have continued their partnership.
The youth clinic will be made up of two components: an on-ice portion costing $50, and a street hockey portion for no charge. Registration is already available online.
Additionally, the Lightning will be hosting an all-day celebration of girls’ hockey at the RDV Ice Den in Orlando. This event — the Sunshine State Girls HockeyFest — includes a clinic, skills competition, jamboree, and BBQ cookout.
The first day of the clinic is coincidentally also the date of the eagerly awaited wedding of Packer and Anya Battaglino.
Needless to say, Aug. 16 will be a big day for the NWHL.