Brigette Lacquette has played a lot of high-profile hockey for someone who’s only 21 years old: she’s played with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team (winning a world championship) and Canada’s National Women’s Under-22 Team, and was centralized with Canada’s National Women’s Team ahead of the 2014 Olympics. As Lacquette gets ready for her senior year at the University of Minnesota Duluth, she shares her Esso Cup memories.
ESSO CUP HISTORY
In Calgary, Alta., in 2009, the Westman Wildcats defeated the Scarborough Sharks 5-2 in the gold medal game to capture the inaugural Esso Cup. Lacquette recorded two goals and two assists in six games and was named the tournament’s Top Defenceman.
MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT, ON ICE
With Westman coasting home with a three-goal lead in the gold medal game, Lacquette was whistled for interference with just 27 seconds remaining. She joined one of her best friends, Kelsie Scott, already serving time for high-sticking, in the penalty box. “We were hugging in the box before the game even ended,” says Lacquette. “TSN got us on camera with our arms around each other just smiling. I still have a picture of that.”
MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT, OFF ICE
The team took time to be tourists by visiting the Calgary Zoo and Canada Olympic Park. And at the Opening Ceremonies, all the teams were given local attire to don. “We got to wear the big white cowboy hats,” says Lacquette, laughing.
Westman played Scarborough to wrap up preliminary round play, and although a playoff berth was secure, Lacquette remembers the impending medal round weighing on the team. “We weren’t playing our game. We were at the Esso Cup, and we just didn’t know how to handle the pressure as a team.”
A FAMILY AFFAIR
Lacquette’s older sister, Tara, was Westman’s goaltender that year. “My sister and I did everything together,” says Lacquette, including always playing on the same team – be it in a boys’ league or a girls’ league. “To go to a national championship, play on TSN and win that medal together was amazing.”
WINNING A MEDAL
Sixteen was proving to be a good year for Lacquette. The day before her birthday she won a bronze medal with Manitoba at the 2008 National Women’s Under-18 Championship. Six months later, her Midget team was national champion. The two medals hang at her parents’ home, along with other trophies and mementos her hockey career has brought.