As the NWHL prepares for its inaugural All-Star Game on January 24, 2016, the feeling of history and achievement shall be its predominant themes. Among the empowering women contributing to such a landmark event shall be Janine Weber, whose presence shall extend her remarkable growing legacy.
Becoming the first European player named to an NWHL All-Star Game, it proved to be a remarkable career milestone. Selected by Team Knight (Hilary Knight of the Boston Pride was named the other team captain) with the seventh overall pick of the NWHL All-Star Draft, Weber is one of three Riveters competing for Knight, joined by Morgan Fritz-Ward and Madison Packer, who were among four players voted in by fans. As a side note, Weber, Fritz-Ward and Packer are among five competitors representing the Riveters in the All-Star Game.
Announced on December 10, this landmark publication came days after Weber and her New York Riveters teammates visited Japan for an exhibition series against the Japanese national women’s team. For Weber, such feats resulted in finishing the 2015 calendar year on a very strong yet significant note.
Against Team Japan, Weber notched a goal against Nana Fujimoto, who is a member of the New York Riveters, but stood between the pipes for her homeland during said series. Of note, Fujimoto is among the other international competitors competing in the All-Star Game. Along with Canada’s Devon Skeats, the two shall suit up for Team Pfalzer (Buffalo Beauts captain Emily Pfalzer was named one of the game’s captains).
Three Canadian-born players shall join Weber on Team Knight including Shelby Bram of the Buffalo Beauts, along with a pair of Connecticut Whale players including Kaleigh Fratkin, the first Canadian to sign an NWHL contract, and goaltender Jaimie Leonoff, who won the first game in NWHL history.
In a year that saw Weber become the first European player to score a Clarkson Cup clinching goal, along with signing the first-ever player contract in NWHL history, subsequently with the New York Riveters, she is one of the most prominent women in hockey.
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