PHOTO CRED: Matt Raney
BROOKLYN, NY – Boston has landed a top player on the NWHL’s unrestricted free agent market, signing New York Riveters’ top scorer and Austrian National Team member Janine Weber to a contract for the 2017-18 season.
Weber, who turns 26 on June 19, is returning to New England after playing two seasons with the Riveters. The forward from Innsbruck, Austria played one year at Providence while attending graduate school, and one season with the Boston Blades of the CWHL (scoring the game-winning goal to win the Clarkson Cup). Her new coach with the Pride is former NHL defenseman Thomas Poeck, a fellow Austrian.
“The New England area has always felt like home for me since I came to the U.S. and it’s where my boyfriend lives, so this was a tough decision but one that was best for me,” said Weber, who will live in Rhode Island. “I am really going to miss my teammates on the Riveters and all of the fans in New Jersey and New York. Those two years were very special to me. I look forward to becoming part of the Pride and being coached by Thomas Poeck, whose career I have followed for a long time.”
Weber led the Riveters in scoring last season with 10-12-22 in 17 games. In the first season of the NWHL in 2015-16, she was 3-6-9 in 18 games with New York.
While studying for her Masters in Urban Teaching at Providence, the 5-6 forward played 35 games for the team in her one year of U.S. college eligibility. She had 5 goals and 6 assists. Weber said she has begun looking for teaching jobs in New England. Before coming to Providence in 2013, Weber developed in various Austrian girls’ hockey leagues.
“Small world, isn’t it”? said Poeck, her new coach. “I have heard many great things about Janine’s skill and determination, so I’m looking forward to working with her. She will be a big part of the Pride.”