CALGARY, Alta. – Thirty-one of the top young female hockey players in the country will take to the ice at the MasterCard Centre in Toronto, Ont., from Friday, December 17 through Sunday, December 19 for the Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team selection camp ahead of the 2011 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship, January 1-8 in Stockholm, Sweden.
Hockey Canada also announced Thursday that Erika Sowchuk (Vauxhall, Alta./Edge School, JWHL) has been added to the selection camp roster, replacing Shannon MacAulay (Mt. Herbert, P.E.I./Kitchener-Waterloo, PWHL), who is unable to participate due to injury.
Sowchuk attended the National Women’s Under-18 Team selection camp, also held at the MasterCard Centre, in August but was not chosen for the roster that competed in a three-game series against the United Sates in Lake Placid, N.Y.
The selection camp roster includes all 22 members of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team that played in the three-game series against the Americans (Ambrose, Bram, Connery, Davidson, Desbiens, Dufault, Edney, Fulton, Josephs, Kosta, MacDonnell, Makela, Mercer, Repaci, Robson, Roesler, Shields, Stacey, Turnbull, Woloschuk, Zgraja and Zuback), four players who attended the selection camp prior to the series (Crossley, Gagne, Odland and Sowchuk) and two additional players who attended the National Women’s Program strength and conditioning camp in May (Kohler and Luczak).
Three players invited to the selection camp, goaltender Jaimie Leonoff (Montreal, Que.), defenceman Melissa Channell (Oakville, Ont.) and forward Hailey Browne (Oakville, Ont.), are newcomers to the national program.
Defenceman Erin Ambrose (Keswick, Ont.) and forward Emily Fulton (Stratford, Ont.) return after helping Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team win its first-ever gold medal at the 2010 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship in Chicago, Ill., last April. Canada took silver at the first two U18 world championships, in 2008 in Calgary, Alta., and 2009 in Füssen, Germany.
BREAKDOWN OF CANADA’S NATIONAL WOMEN’S UNDER-18 TEAM SELECTION CAMP ROSTER BY PROVINCE
Alberta (three): Josephs, Odland, Sowchuk
Ontario (19): Ambrose, Browne, Channell, Connery, Edney, Fulton, Gagne, Kohler, Kosta, Luczak, Makela, Mercer, Repaci, Robson, Roesler, Shields, Stacey, Zgraja, Zuback
Manitoba (three): Bram, Dufault, Woloschuk
New Brunswick (one): MacDonnell
Nova Scotia (two): Crossley, Turnbull
Quebec (three): Davidson, Desbiens, Leonoff
Head coach Sarah Hodges, assistant coaches France Montour and Cassandra Turner and Hockey Canada scouts will select the 20-player Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team based on a series of practices and intersquad Red-White games to take place during the three-day selection camp in Toronto. The public is invited to attend these on-ice sessions.
Kristen Lipscombe, Hockey Canada’s coordinator of communications, will be on site in Toronto for the selection camp from December 17-19 and in Stockholm for the world championship from December 27-January 9. She will be handling all interview requests and can be reached at 403-826-4819 or email@example.com.