Doxie McCoy says she was just a Black girl who decided to play ice hockey. Boston College says she’s living history.

BC held “Doxie McCoy & Alumni Day” on Friday as part of its 50th anniversary of women’s hockey at the Chestnut Hill campus.

McCoy, a Washington, D.C. native who was a founding member of BC’s women’s hockey team in 1973 and who is widely believed to be the college’s first Black woman athlete, performed the ceremonial puck drop before Boston College’s 4-3 overtime win against University of Connecticut at Kelley Rink.

“It’s very exciting, I’m very honored, I’m very humbled,” McCoy said during an intermission interview on ESPN. “I want to thank Katie Crowley, the coach, thank the team, thank Boston College. And I want to give props to the women who really were with me at the beginning... I’m just a Black girl who decided she wanted to play hockey, so I’m very fortunate to be here.”

McCoy, who had never played hockey before and was recruited from Boston College’s field hockey team, became a goalie for a women’s club ice hockey team that was formed by students a year after Title IX, which prohibits discrimination based on sex in educational programs or activities that receive federal assistance, came into law.


“Luckily, as a goaltender, you don’t have to skate as much as the other players,” McCoy said. “I learned to skate backwards. I had to be quick to stop the puck. I was quick and I had those skills to be a goaltender. The team actually gave me my own coach, so that was great.”

That club team helped pave the way for BC’s formidable NCAA Division I program that has made seven Frozen Four appearances, won three Hockey East championships and eight Beanpot Tournament titles.

Other Black women followed in McCoy’s skates at BC, including Blake Bolden (2009-14), a pro scout and Growth and Inclusion specialist for the Los Angeles Kings, and Kaliya Johnson (2012-16), who went on to play for Connecticut and Boston of the old National Women’s Hockey League from 2016-19.

“It is a huge honor to be here to not only honor Doxie, but to recognize the opportunity that she created not only for myself, for Blake,” Johnson said. “I'm so grateful to be a part of this moment and to thank her because without her I wouldn't be I wouldn't be here.”