Monsters and Lake Erie Panthers Hockey Club host free clinics with Blake Bolden SaturdayMar 1, 2022
The Cleveland Monsters have partnered together with the Euclid Youth Hockey Association and Lake Erie Panthers Hockey Club to present a Monsters Girls Hockey Clinic, led by hockey pioneer Blake Bolden, at the Euclid E.C. Orr Ice Center on Saturday, March 5, at 9:15 a.m. The on-ice clinic is a special girl-centric event that will take place ahead of the Monsters Women’s History Celebration presented by Athleta at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse later that night.
The Monsters Girls Hockey Clinic will be offered for girls ages 5-15 with intermediate skating skills in a single session running from 9:15 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. The event will be FREE and participants can enroll online. Participants are asked to have at least one year of skating experience and will receive USA Hockey-certified instruction for drills on skating, passing and shooting. Additionally, participants will have a photo opportunity with Bolden and receive a commemorative signed souvenir photo.
Bolden will also be on hand for the Lake Erie Panthers Hockey Club’s Try Hockey for Free event that follows from 11 a.m. to noon. This program invites kids ages 4-9 to experience ice hockey for the first time and learn basic skills in a fun, safe environment. The Lake Erie Panthers are a program of the Euclid Youth Hockey Association operating out of Euclid E.C. Orr Ice Center, and one of 14 Monsters Certified Learn to Play Partners in Northeast Ohio. To learn more information about the event and register, please visit here.
Participants in one of either the Monsters Girls Hockey Clinic or Try Hockey for Free event will receive a free ticket to the Monsters Women’s History Celebration presented by Athleta at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, also on Saturday, March 5, at 7:00 p.m.
Bolden, a native of Cleveland, has broken many barriers in achieving many firsts in the sport of women’s ice hockey. Bolden started at a young age, playing minor youth hockey for the Cleveland Barons and the Ohio Flames. After attending high school in Lake Placid, New York, Bolden attended Boston College where she served as the Eagles’ captain during her senior year and appeared in three Frozen Four Tournaments, earning Hockey East’s Defensive Player of the Year Award and All-American Honors. After graduating, Bolden joined the Boston Blades of the Canadian Women’s Hockey League which whom she won the Clarkson Cup in 2015. In 2016, Bolden played for the Boston Pride of the National Women’s Hockey League and helped the team claim the inaugural Isobel Cup. After a stint in Switzerland, Bolden returned to the NWHL to play for the Buffalo Beauts where she reclaimed her “Hardest Shot” title in the 2019 NWHL All-Star Skills Competition and was named the NWHL’s Defensive Player of the Year. Dubbed the Jackie Robinson of women’s hockey, Bolden remains the first Black player selected in the first round of the CWHL and was the first ever Black player to compete in the NWHL. Bolden currently resides in Southern California. In 2020, she joined the Los Angeles Kings as the team’s Growth and Inclusion Specialist and Pro Scout becoming just the second woman to ever scout in the NHL behind Cammi Granato.
The Monsters Girls Hockey Clinics are an extension of the team’s Grow the Game initiative which was established in 2017 to introduce new players to the sport of hockey while limiting barriers to entry. This girls-specific event helps shine a light on the existing female hockey community in Northeast Ohio. All of the Monsters Girls Grow the Game events hold the objective of highlighting the impact of women in hockey while connecting local girls and women with opportunities in Northeast Ohio.