FÜSSEN, GERMANY – Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team is in Germany, set to begin its quest for gold at the 2009 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship, which begins Monday in Füssen. Canada took home silver from the inaugural world championship last year, falling 5-2 to the United States in the gold medal game in Calgary, AB.
“It was a difficult loss last year especially playing in our home country. I’m really looking forward to leading the team to success in this year’s tournament,” said Brianne Jenner, who will serve as Canada’s captain.
Canada opens the tournament on Monday against Switzerland, and will face Finland on Tuesday and the Czech Republic on Wednesday in preliminary round Group B action. The semifinals are set for Friday, January 9, with the bronze medal and gold medal games scheduled for Saturday, January 10.
National Women’s Under-18 Team head coach Stephanie White has announced that forward Brianne Jenner (Oakville, ON/Mississauga Chiefs, CWHL) will be Canada’s captain at the 2009 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship. Jenner also captained the team during the series vs. the USA in August.
Defenceman Laura Fortino (Hamilton, ON/Stoney Creek Sabres, PWHL) and forward Marie-Philip Poulin (Beauceville, QC/Blues de Dawson, Collegial AA) were named alternate captains. Jenner, Fortino and Poulin won silver medals with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at last year’s world championship.
“We’re excited to have such tremendous leaders on our team,” said White. “We feel they proved leadership back in August during our three-game series against the United States, as well as during our pre-competition camp in Toronto. I have no doubt these three athletes will be successful in leading the team at the world championship in Germany.”
Before departing for Germany the team took part in a pre-competition camp in Toronto, which included a pair of exhibition games against Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) teams.
“These athletes have come together quickly which is going to make them a difficult team to play. The exhibition games in Toronto helped us grow on and off the ice as a team,” said White.
In the first game, Poulin and Laurie Kingsbury (Valleyfield, QC/Sélects, Midget AA) scored a pair of goals each and nine players had a multiple-point game in a 10-0 win over the University of Toronto, while Jenner’s five points (two goals, three assists) led Canada at a 9-0 win over York University in the second game.
Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team includes two goaltenders, six defencemen and 12 forwards. Eighteen of the 20 players were members of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team for a three-game series against the United States in August in Lake Placid, NY, and all 20 participated in the 2008 National Women’s Under-18 Championship in Napanee, ON, including six members of Team Ontario Red, which captured its fifth consecutive gold medal.
The National Women’s Under-18 Team is a key component of Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence, which, along with the under-22 program, helps identify, evaluate and develop female hockey players for Canada’s National Women’s Team.
NOTE TO MEDIA:Christina Rogers will be on-site with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team and will be handling all media requests. For any interviews, she can be reached on her cell phone at (011) 447924229507 or by e-mail at email@example.com.