Last Week around the Leagues
by Fran Stuchbury
September 14, 2021 - National Women's Soccer League (NWSL)
This past week the Massachusetts Pirates won the United Bowl Championship in the first season in the Indoor Football League, the National Women's Hockey League rebranded as the Premier Hockey Federation, the Champions Indoor Football League franchise in Topeka announced it will be known as the Topeka Tropics, and the Raleigh Flyers won their first American Ultimate Disc League Championship. Highlights from this week are from the Indoor Football League, Champions Indoor Football, Canadian Football League, Premier Hockey Federation, North American Hockey League, Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, Western Hockey League, American Ultimate Disc League, National Women's Soccer League, United Soccer League Championship, United Soccer League One, Women's National Basketball Association, NBA G League, and Premier Lacrosse League.
Indoor Football League
Garrett Hartley kicked a game winning 31-yard field goal in overtime as the Massachusetts Pirates defeated the Arizona Rattlers 37-34 to win the United Bowl claiming the 2021 Indoor Football League Championship at the Footprint Center in Phoenix. Pirates quarterback Alejandro Bennifield was the game's Most Valuable Player as he was 10 of 23 passing for 83 yards and a touchdown (with two interceptions) and he was also the Pirates' leading rusher with 56 yards on ten carries with two scores.
Recapping a magical night for Pirate Nation
A moment we won't soon forget.
After leading his team to the best record in the regular season and the top seed in the 2021 IFL Playoffs, Arizona Rattlers quarterback Drew Powell was named the Indoor Football League's 2021 Most Valuable Player. The honor is Powell's second MVP award of his career, his first coming in 2018 when he led the Iowa Barnstormers to the United Bowl championship
The Indoor Football League announced that Arizona Rattlers Head Coach Kevin Guy has been named the 2021 IFL Coach of the Year. Guy led the Rattlers to a league best 12-2 regular season record in 2021, including a perfect 7-0 record at home. This marks the fourth time Guy has been named Coach of the Year during his head coaching career, and the first IFL Coach of the Year honor for Guy since the Rattlers joined the IFL in 2017.
Champions Indoor Football
The Topeka Tropics are the newest professional arena football team in Topeka, Kansas.
Canadian Football League
The Montreal Alouettes are deeply saddened by the passing of former owner Bob Wetenhall. He owned the Alouettes from 1997 to 2019, helped by his son Andrew in the last years. Bob Wetenhall was inducted as a builder into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame's Class of 2015.
The BC Lions announced the signing of American quarterback Danny Etling. Etling (6'3, 220 lbs)- A seventh-round draft pick of the New England Patriots in 2018, Etling spent his rookie season on the practice squad and would earn a Super Bowl ring before being waived and picked up by the Atlanta Falcons in August of 2019. Etling was promoted to the Falcons' active roster in week eight of that season after an injury to Matt Ryan. The native of Terre Haute, Indiana then spent 2020 on the Seattle Seahawks' practice roster and was released at the start of 2021 training camp.
B.C. Lions Lucky Whitehead returns the missed kick 119 yards all the way to the house..
Premier Hockey Federation
The National Women's Hockey League (NWHL) has officially launched a new era with the introduction of a name change and refreshed logo ahead of the 2021-22 season. The Premier Hockey Federation (PHF) re-defines the league's brand based on the skill and talent of its athletes as opposed to their gender and is the first professional women's sports league in North America to lift the word 'women's out of its title.
Created in 2015. Reborn in 2021. We are the Premier Hockey Federation
North American Hockey League
We take a look at some highlights from the first weekend of action in the North American Hockey League
Quebec Major Junior Hockey League
NHL Post Draft Interviews - Jacob Melanson - was taken in the 5th round - 131st overall by the Seattle Kraken.
Western Hockey League
Brandon Cutler split his time in the WHL between the Red Deer Rebels and Victoria Royals, posting 106 career regular season points along the way.
American Ultimate Disc League
With a masterful offensive performance, the Raleigh Flyers clinched the 2021 AUDL Championship by defeating the New York Empire 19-16. This is Raleigh's first title in franchise history and the first competitive adult men's division title for a Raleigh area team.
Highlights from the Raleigh Flyers (11-4) 19-16 win over the New York Empire (12-3) in 2021 AUDL Championship Game.
Leylah Fernandez and Reilly Opelka are set to play World TeamTennis in November. Leylah Fernandez has powered her way to the US Open semifinals following her upset victory over No. 5 Elina Svitolina in a third-set tiebreak, becoming the youngest player to reach the final four since Maria Sharapova in 2005. Reilly Opelka is coming off his best career finish at a Major, not losing a set on his way to the US Open Round of 16.
National Women's Soccer League
Second one in three weeks as OL Reign Bethany Balcer claims Budweiser Player of the Week honors for Week 16.
She's done it again. Ashlyn Harris claims Verizon Save of the Week honors for this save in Week 16.
The USL Championship announced the Team of the Week Presented by Cleer Audio for Week 20 of the 2021 regular season, with San Diego Loyal SC forward Corey Hertzog voted Player of the Week after recording notching a pair of goals in his side's 4-2 victory against the LA Galaxy II on Sunday afternoon, moving the veteran forward into a tie for second place in the Championship's all-time regular season scoring list.
USL Championship Save of the Week Winner - Sean Lewis - FC Tulsa
USL League One
USL League One Goal of the Week - Damia Viader - Union Omaha
Women's National Basketball Association
Founding WNBA President, Val Ackerman, gives her Hall Of Fame enshrinement speech.
Lauren Jackson, enshrinee, Naismith Hall Of Fame speech.
The Atlanta Dream announced today that NFL Executive Morgan Shaw Parker will join the team as President and Chief Operating Officer. A remarkable milestone for the Dream and Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA), Shaw Parker brings over 25 years of experience and values-driven leadership at all levels of the sports industry. Most recently she served as Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer at Arthur M. Blank Sports & Entertainment (AMBSE) where she led marketing and communications initiatives for the Atlanta Falcons and Mercedes-Benz Stadium.
NBA G League
The Maine Celtics announced the hiring of Jarell Christian as head coach for the upcoming 2021-22 NBA G League season. Christian, who spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach with the Washington Wizards, becomes the 7th head coach in the history of the Maine franchise.
"The one thing I always remember about the Expo is the crowd." New head coach Jarell Christian can't wait to be the home team coach this season in Maine.
Premier Lacrosse League
PLL Top 10. Best of Philadelphia - Semifinals
Did we miss anything newsworthy or downright fun? Have a nomination for next week's column? Contact us today and let us know.
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National Women's Soccer League Stories from September 14, 2021
- Nadim to Undergo Season-Ending ACL Surgery - Racing Louisville FC
- Called up for Friendlies, Kara to Represent Dominican Republic - Racing Louisville FC
- Deloitte Named Official Professional Services Provider of the National Women's Soccer League - NWSL
- Last Week around the Leagues - OSC Original by Fran Stuchbury
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the writer(s), and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.