LIVERPOOL, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — You can often catch Cole Broughton getting some hockey practice in his front yard. He has played hockey since he was four-years old.
“My whole family is hockey family,” Broughton said. “My dad played hockey, my brother played hockey.”
There’s so much he loves about being on the ice.
“I love that it’s very fast, it’s very competitive sometimes. You have to be on your toes and look around,” Broughton explained.
He’s 16-years-old now and a junior at Liverpool High School. All these years later, he’s always been the only black player.
“I really haven’t felt different, but I always thought about what it would be like playing with or against someone who looks like me.”Cole Broughton, Liverpool High School Hockey player
It became a reality earlier this month thanks to hockey moms. His mom Karen Brought is part of the Facebook group Black Hockey Mommies. This year, co-founders decided this year to form the 18-U Panthers. The Panthers one of the first all-black teams in the country.
“I felt that we all had this sense of yearning for this,” said Panthers co-founder Rochelle Popyon.
“It was just a moving feeling that we were actually part of this,” said the team’s other co-founder April Scott.
The players are from all across the country and competed in Minnesota. Cole’s mom doesn’t want the effort to stop there.
“The story of a black hockey getting together and playing together, hopefully one day to inspire another child, black child to get on the ice and actually skate,” said Cole’s mom Karen Broughton. “That is actually my passion.”
That passion has proved that it’s possible.
The Panthers team still keep in touch. The moms are already looking into when this team can compete again.