International Ice Hockey Federation

Double challenge

Double challenge

Meeri Raisanen to play with men and women

Published 12.06.2015 08:30 GMT-7 | Author Martin Merk
Double challenge
Finnish goaltender Meeri Raisanen answers the questions after winning the quarter-final game against Switzerland at the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship. Photo: Andre Ringuette / HHOF-IIHF Images
Female goaltenders playing in minor leagues with men, or even professionally, are not a rarity anymore.

However, Finnish netminder Meeri Raisanen goes a new way by signing with two teams to combine playing in men’s and women’s hockey.

Raisanen will play in Jyvaskyla both for D-Kiekko in the third men’s tier as well as for JYP Jyvaskyla in the top Finnish women’s league.

In a statement Raisanen is looking forward to the extra challenge to come, and to work hard to make her dreams come true.

“An athlete lives for new challenges and progressing from ups and downs during the career. This is just what I needed right now,” said Raisanen, who played in the Russian women’s league for SKIF Nizhni Novgorod last season.

The Tampere native was Finland’s number-one goalie at the 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship where her team won the first bronze medal at a big event in four years. Raisanen was third in save percentage with 93.24% only behind Switzerland’s Florence Schelling and Japan’s Nana Fujimoto.

Last season Finland’s most famous female goaltender Noora Raty already moved to men’s hockey and signed with Kiekko-Vantaa where she played eight games in the second-tier men’s league Mestis as well as six games for Bewe TuusKi in the third-tier Suomi-sarja where Raisanen will play next season.

Raty missed the Women’s World Championship due to health reasons but next spring Finland’s best two goaltenders hope to return when the 2016 IIHF Ice Hockey Women’s World Championship will take place in Kamloops, Canada.


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