Boston Pride top newcomer also led the league in scoring during the 2022-23 season
BOSTON, MA – (April 27, 2023) – The Premier Hockey Federation (PHF) has announced that top scorer Loren Gabel of the Boston Pride has been selected as both the PHF Most Valuable Player and Outstanding Player of the Year for the 2022-23 regular season. The MVP award was determined by an independent vote conducted by the Professional Hockey Writers Association (PHWA) Women’s Hockey Chapter, while the Outstanding Player of the Year award recipient was selected by members of the PHF Players’ Association (PHFPA).
“It is an absolute honor to win the 2022-23 MVP and Outstanding Player of the Year awards, and I am proud to be recognized by my fellow players and by the dedicated media who cover this league,” said Gabel. “I couldn’t have done it without every single person who has helped me get to this point. The PHF has a tremendous amount of talent, and I am fortunate that I get to play alongside and against some of the best every day. I am thankful for the opportunity I was given to play in Boston, and I am looking forward to my future in the PHF.”
The MVP and Outstanding Player of the Year honors bring Gabel’s 2022-23 awards count to four, making her one of the most decorated players in single season history. She was also selected as the PHF Newcomer of the Year and earned the Offensive Player of the Year award as the league’s top regular season scorer. Gabel helped Boston finish in first place in the overall standings with the league’s highest scoring offense. Her 40 points in 22 games tied a single season record, while her 20 goals and 20 assists were both league leaders that gave the PHF its first offensive triple crown winner since the inaugural 2015-16 campaign.
“As chair of the newly formed Women’s Hockey Chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers Association (PHWA), it is an honor to announce Boston Pride forward Loren Gabel as the 2023 PHF Most Valuable Player,” said Erica Ayala, PHF Broadcaster and Chair of the PHWA Women’s Hockey Chapter. “Although this isn’t the first time media have voted for league awards, this is the inaugural year media have voted as members of the PHWA. Loren received six first-ballot votes from our panel of 13 women’s hockey reporters and led all vote-getters with 43 points overall. It was an honor to represent the PHWA alongside Commissioner Reagan Carey, PHF Players Association Executive Director Nicole Corriero, and the league’s first-ever MVP Brianna Decker, to surprise Loren with the news. Congratulations to Loren on a spectacular first season! We look forward to all that is to come in what we hope is a long professional hockey career.”
Among her highlights, Gabel tied a pair of PHF single game records this season with a six-point performance on Dec. 11 that included two goals and four assists in a 7-5 win over Buffalo, and a four-goal outburst on Jan. 21 in a 5-0 victory against Montreal. She tallied 10 multi-point efforts in total, led the PHF with 146 shots on goal, and finished the schedule on an 11-game point-streak. She was held off the scoresheet just twice during the regular season and missed an additional two games while competing with Canada’s National Women’s Team in November Rivalry Series matchups against the United States. Gabel was also named All-Star MVP, helping PHF Team Canada to victory with three goals and one assist over three showcase tournament games.
“I’m so excited for Loren, she had a phenomenal season from start to finish and is beyond deserving of the MVP and Outstanding Player of the Year awards,” said Allie Thunstrom, Pride forward, PHFPA Player Rep, and 2020 PHF Co-MVP. “Loren is an incredible shooter who can score from anywhere and is an equally threatening playmaker. She’s fun to watch and even more fun to play with. She was consistently outstanding every weekend – which is incredibly hard to do with the high level of talent that exists in the league and how strong all seven teams are. It’s been amazing being her teammate this year and watching her talent and passion shine, but what makes her even more deserving is how hard she works behind the scenes. She’s always working to perfect her craft and make herself and everyone around her better. I’m so excited for her to be recognized by not only media but by fellow players in the league and couldn’t be happier for her and can’t wait to see what she does next.”
The 25-year-old from Kitchener, Ontario registered a 1.82 points-per-game average which is currently tied for first among all-time PHF skaters. Gabel signed a two-year contract with the Pride following three seasons as a member of the PWHPA and a four-year NCAA career at Clarkson University. She won back-to-back national championships with the Golden Knights in 2017 and 2018, was a Patty Kazmaier Award winner in 2019, and represented Canada when it won bronze at the 2019 IIHF Women’s World Championship.
“Anytime a player is recognized by the league, media, and their peers it shows how much of an impact they have on the game, and being around Loren and playing against her I know she’s a factor every time she steps on the ice and often finds the back of the net,” said Brianna Decker, PHF Team and Player Development Advisor and two-time PHF MVP. “Congratulations Loren on an amazing season and thank you for pushing the game and the league forward.”
Past MVP honorees include Decker who was recognized twice as a member of the Pride during the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons. The list also includes Alexa Gruschow of the Riveters in 2017-18, Maddie Elia of the Beauts in 2018-19, Boston’s Jillian Dempsey and Minnesota’s Allie Thunstrom who were co-recipients in 2019-20, Mikyla Grant-Mentis who won with Toronto in 2020-21, and Connecticut’s Kennedy Marchment in 2021-22. Marchment was a finalist for both this season’s MVP and Outstanding Player of the Year awards along with Pride goaltender Corinne Schroeder. This was the first season of a new media partnership between the PHF and the PHWA that featured 13 inaugural members casting ballots to determine the league’s MVP award recipient. The Outstanding Player of the Year award was introduced this season, providing members of the PHFPA with the platform to recognize their peers.
About the Premier Hockey Federation
The PHF is the home of professional women’s hockey in North America. Established in 2015 as the National Women’s Hockey League, the NWHL rebranded to become the PHF in 2021 and provide opportunities for elite athletes to earn a living playing the game they love while fueling the continued growth of the sport. The league is made up of the Boston Pride, Buffalo Beauts, Connecticut Whale, Metropolitan Riveters, Minnesota Whitecaps, Montreal Force, and the Toronto Six who all compete annually for the Isobel Cup. As part of a two-year agreement with ESPN, live coverage of the 2022-23 and 2023-24 PHF seasons is available exclusively on ESPN+ in the United States, and provides international rights for games which includes TSN in Canada. For more information visit premierhockeyfederation.com.
PHF Senior Vice President of Communications
Featured image by: Premier Hockey Federation (PHF)