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Dec. 20, 2021 — A brand new chapter in area hockey range?

I first met Courtney Deena and her mom Fredericka a couple of decade in the past. She was a participant on some good and formative groups on the College of Maryland simply concerning the time when this system made the transition from the ACC to the Huge Ten.

And she or he simply occurred to be one of many few Black gamers not solely on the Terps workforce, however in all of NCAA Division I.

On the sidelines, I’ve had lots of conversations with Mrs. Deena, starting from Negro League baseball to her daughter’s taking part in days at Gahanna Columbus Academy (Conn.).

At present, Courtney Deena is an assistant coach at Hofstra College. And this week, she was elected to a place on the board of the Nationwide Subject Hockey Coaches’ Affiliation, a particular chair devoted to range, fairness, and inclusion.

One of many issues this web site has been all for since our 1998 launch has been a transfer in direction of range within the sport. Then as now, the ladies’s nationwide workforce has been overwhelmingly white. Regardless of the very best efforts of individuals within the nationwide governing physique, you don’t see many minorities within the sport.

Now, it’s notable that a number of the finest groups within the U.S. — Delmar (Del.), Voorhees Jap (N.J.), and Owings Mills Garrison Forest (Md.) — have African-American starters on their groups. However there’s a distinction between having seen athletes and making a deep connection to the game of area hockey.

Jim Davis, the sportswriter for The Trentonian, informed me this again in Could of 1999:

“What you actually need is a few black gamers — of which there should not many — to go to the internal metropolis and say, ‘Why don’t we strive area hockey?’ That’s what occurred to softball 20 years in the past. I feel it will behoove lots of black faculties to look into having area hockey as a result of it’s an ideal sport. However you may’t do it with no devoted trainer within the system who is aware of the game.”

Now, we’ve seen majority-minority college district begin taking over lacrosse within the final decade in Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore. You’re additionally seeing individuals of shade in teaching positions in Division I girls’s lacrosse.

I’m hoping Courtney Deena’s affect may help area hockey catch up.

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