Bulldog Insider Podcast: Bulldogs return from Europe to play in Premier Hockey Federation

Europe had become the go-to destination for a number of prominent alumni of the Minnesota Duluth women's hockey program following graduation. Now, many have returned to North American thanks to the increased investments being made by the Premier Hockey Federation (formerly the NWHL).

Minnesota Duluth defenseman Sidney Morin (5) passes the puck during a February 2017 game against North Dakota at Amsoil Arena in Duluth. Morin is one of a handful of former Bulldogs who have returned from Europe to play in the Premier Women's Hockey League this season.
Clint Austin / File / Duluth News Tribune

This week on the Bulldog Insider Podcast, we're talking about the state of women's professional hockey. And unlike previous years, we didn't have to Zoom with players from seven time zones away to do so.

A flood of players — from the U.S., Canada and Europe — have returned from European leagues to play in the Premier Hockey Federation this season, including a number of Minnesota Duluth alumni. There are five former Bulldogs playing on the Minnesota Whitecaps this season, and two — Sidney Morin and Sydney Brodt — joined the podcast this week to discuss the investments the PHF (formerly the National Women's Hockey League) has made to bring in the world's best players.

Bulldog Insider is co-hosted by Duluth News Tribune sports reporter Matt Wellens and My9 television voice of Bulldog hockey Zach Schneider. Episodes are edited and produced by Duluth News Tribune digital producers Wyatt Buckner and Dan Williamson. You can find more Bulldog hockey coverage at and more episodes of Bulldog Insider wherever you listen to podcasts. New episodes air every Thursday.

Clint Austin / caustin@duluthnews.comMinnesota Duluth's Sydney Brodt (14) shoots the puck near Minnesota State-Mankato's Claire Butorac (7) during Friday's game at Amsoil Arena.
Minnesota Duluth's Sydney Brodt (14) shoots the puck near Minnesota State-Mankato's Claire Butorac (7) during an October 2018 game at Amsoil Arena.
Clint Austin / File / Duluth News Tribune

Below is a list of all the former UMD women's players who are playing professional hockey this year, and where they are playing.

Former Bulldogs in the Pros

Premier Hockey Federation

Minnesota Whitecaps
Sidney Morin
Sydney Brodt
Ashleigh Brykaliuk
Anna Klein
Emma Stauber


Toronto Six
Michela Cava

Boston Pride
Elizabeth Giguere

Montreal Force
Catherine Daoust

Buffalo Beauts
Jess Healey

Connecticut Whale
Katerina Mrazova

Metropolitan Riveters
Eveliina Makinen

Professional Women’s Hockey Players Association

Demi Crossman
Brigette Lacquette
Jocelyne Larocque
Maddie Rooney
Iya Gavrilova


Linnea Hedin (Sweden)
Lara Stalder (Sweden)
Michelle Lowenhielm (Sweden)
Marie Delarvre (Sweden)
Tea Villila (Finland)
Alexandra Vafina (Russa)
Ryleigh Houston (Russia)


Co-host of the Bulldog Insider Podcast and college hockey reporter for the Duluth News Tribune and The Rink Live covering the Minnesota Duluth men's and women's hockey programs.
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