It’s the end of the Premier Hockey Federation Season, so here are our picks for all the top awards.
As the PHF season draws to a close, it’s time to recognize the biggest stars of the year. Those who put up ridiculous stats all year long scoring memorable goals, racking up assists, and stopping pucks deserve a little bit of recognition. Let’s take a quick look at who’s likely to win each of the major awards when the season wraps up, and why they deserve some hardware for their efforts.
Mikyla Grant-Mentis: Here’s a brief disclosure: you’re gonna see this name a lot in this piece. Not only will you see Grant-Mentis’ name often this year, she’s going to be on everyone’s ballots for a lot of awards for as long as she keeps playing. Mikyla Grant-Mentis is a Grant-Menace on the scoresheet, with 29 points in just 17 games. Her matchup this weekend versus the Connecticut Whale will possibly decide who will take home the scoring title, as she’s matched up against our next finalist.
Kennedy Marchment: Speaking of which, Kennedy Marchment is also a name you’ll see often both here and for years to come. Marchment is in her first season in the PHF (more on that to come) and has been dynamic all year long for the Whale. Kennedy has 28 points in 18 games played while contributing in both goals and assists. Marchment is a large influence on her team’s sudden rise to the top of the PHF and she has a solid chance to take this award.
Jonna Curtis: While Jonna Curtis is mathematically eliminated from winning the scoring title, I’d like to shout her out for her incredible season. Curtis tallied 24 points in her 20 PHF games and jumped into this conversation rather late in the year. It’s a great sign for the Minnesota Whitecaps heading into the playoffs that their leading scorer is getting hot at the right time.
Goalie of the Year
Katie Burt: Statistically, Katie Burt has put up one of the most incredible seasons for a goalie I could imagine. Burt currently has a save percentage of .958 and a goals against average of 1.39. I can’t emphasize enough how insane a goalie has to be to stop 96 out of every 100 shots she faces. Opposing teams have to feel a little helpless when the other team’s backstop is on that kind of a heater. Katie Burt has started playing in back-to-back games for the Boston Pride, and she’s yet to show weakness. Good luck to anyone shooting on her in the playoffs; they’re going to need it.
Elaine Chuli: Much like her only competition, Elaine Chuli has thrown up comically good stats all year. You really could use all the same adjectives I used to describe Katie Burt with Elaine Chuli. Chuli has been borderline unstoppable with a .944 save percentage and her 1.46 goals against average. Both goalies have been crazy good and the difference between them is razor-thin. The only large discrepancy in numbers is Chuli’s 15 wins to Burt’s 7. I think this will set the two apart in the eyes of voters and ultimately give Toronto’s goalie the edge.
Defender of the Year
Kaleigh Fratkin: Let’s start out with our regularly scheduled Kaleigh Fratkin defender of the year nomination. Fratkin has won the award in both of the last two seasons and remains an elite defensive presence on the Boston Pride’s blue line. She leads all PHF defenders with 29 takeaways—I’d suggest not trying to get around her. While there’s flashier options for the defender of the year in the PHF, Kaleigh Fratkin does her job efficiently and is a black hole for opposing offenses.
Allie Munroe: In terms of two-way defenders, Allie Munroe is one of the best in the game. Munroe has 10 points this year for the Connecticut Whale while adding 24 takeaways and averaging nearly a shot-block per game. All of that combines to give Munroe a well-rounded skill set that’s made a big difference for Connecticut in her first PHF season.
Taylor Woods: Now if you fancy a modern, flashy defender, Taylor Woods is your pick. Woods is the benefactor of playing on the PHF’s most offensively gifted team as she’s stacked up 3 goals and 11 assists so far. Taylor Woods is commonly seen jumping up in the Toronto Six’s rush creating problems for opposing defenders. I enjoy watching Woods’ transition game and think it gives an intriguing dimension to Toronto’s team. Her contributions definitely earn her a spot in the conversation for defender of the year.
Newcomer of the Year
Let’s not be silly. The newcomer of the year award is Kennedy Marchment’s award and it’s not particularly close. Marchment signed with the Connecticut Whale this past offseason and no one could’ve predicted her enormous impact. Not only does she lead the team in scoring, she’s second in the PHF only behind reigning MVP Mikyla Grant-Mentis. Marchment has excelled in every aspect and her transition to North American professional hockey has been seamless. Everything she’s done this year makes her the easy selection for this award.
By all accounts, the MVP discussion is a two-horse race. We’ve already discussed the elite offensive abilities of Mikyla Grant-Mentis and Kennedy Marchment—who I think are the only two viable options to take home this year’s honor. They play each other twice more this coming weekend before the regular season ends, and it feels like the MVP award is on the line. If I had it my way, it’d just be Marchment and Grant-Mentis on the ice for 60 minutes, 1-on-1. Whoever scores the most gets the trophy and that’s how this is settled; who do I talk to about this?
In all seriousness, both of these players have had truly incredible seasons and whoever walks away with the award deserves it. They’ve set the bar for talent in the PHF, which is why I think it’s sort of a coin flip to hand out MVP this season. No matter who gets it, both Mikyla Grant-Mentis and Kennedy Marchment will be in the discussion for as long as they’re a part of the PHF.
As the PHF season transitions to playoff mode, it’s important to highlight the most impressive stories of the year. We’ve seen incredible offensive seasons from veterans and newcomers alike, which gives fans good reason to be excited for the direction of the league. While there’s always time for debate on who deserves awards the most, it’s been fun to witness each of these players’ elite seasons and to see players be rewarded for their efforts. The PHF is in great hands, and the end of this season will be electric as we watch each of these players go up against each other with the Isobel Cup on the line.