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Lauren Barnes 'liked' Tomi Lahren and that crazy Jesus painting on Twitter

Lauren Barnes (right) is coming under fire for what she's been liking on social media. So is the National Women's Hockey League.

Lauren Barnes (right) is coming under fire for what she's been liking on social media. So is the National Women's Hockey League. Star Tribune

Lately, everything has been coming up women’s hockey.

Team USA won gold at the Winter Olympics -- against Canada, no less -- and smashed viewing records in the process.

The honeymoon glow hasn’t vanished yet. Recently, the National Women’s Hockey League announced it would be expanding its depth chart to include a fifth team: the Twin Cities-based Minnesota Whitecaps, which has been proudly slapping pucks since 2004.

All is right in the women's hockey-verse, if you aren’t looking at Twitter.

As reported in the Guardian, the NWHL has been taking flack from its fans on social media thanks to some of the things Whitecaps forward Lauren Barnes, a Minnesota State-Mankato grad from Burnsville, has been liking on Twitter.

For example: this tweet from conservative political commentator Tomi Lahren, who had some thoughts on Colin Kaepernick.

Then there was this gem, from conservative painter Jon McNaughton, whose gallery includes a portrait of President Donald Trump literally teaching a man to fish:

And of course, a tweet from Trump himself made an appearance:

Barnes has since deleted her Twitter account, but the screenshots aren’t going away, and fans have been asking for some kind of a response -- an apology, at least -- from the Whitecaps and the League. Instead, many critical comments have been deleted, and some users have been blocked.

Neither the NWHL nor Barnes have released statements on the issue.

On the surface, it’s one more athlete caught in a social media garbage fire.

Deeper down, it’s also a battle for the soul of women's hockey. Eventually, the NWHL will have to reckon with the fact that while the sport is overwhelmingly affluent and white, its fans are more diverse, and demand better from their players. For now, it’s passing the puck.