CALGARY, AB -- The 20-player roster for Canada's Women's Olympic Hockey Team that will compete at the first-ever women's hockey tournament at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan was announced Tuesday by head coach Shannon Miller.
"This truly is a significant moment in Canadian hockey history," said Bob Nicholson, Canadian Hockey's senior vice-president, hockey operations. "Less than eight years ago, the first National Women's Team competed for Canada at the first IIHF-sanctioned Women's World Hockey Championship in Ottawa and the growth in the female game since then has been phenomenal.
"I know that these 20 athletes are thrilled to have earned the opportunity to compete at the Olympics. What makes the moment that much sweeter is knowing how much the Olympic exposure will raise the profile of the female game in Canada and around the world."
The 20-player roster includes three rookies and 17 veterans, including 16 players who helped Canada win a fourth straight Women's World Championship last April in Kitchener, ON. Collectively, the women, who range in age from 18 to 39, have amassed 43 gold medals in World Championship play for Canada.
"This is a special day in the game of hockey and more specifically in the game of female hockey," said head coach Miller. "The Olympic dream is now realized for these 20-players, but it extends far beyond us and touches all levels of female hockey in this country. It is also very important at this time to acknowledge the players that have played for Team Canada in the past and have paved the way for women's hockey since the first Women's World Championship in 1990."
The roster includes goaltenders Lesley Reddon of Fredericton, NB and Manon Rhéaume of Charlesbourg, QC, both two-time Women's World Champions. The defence includes two-time World Champions Therese Brisson of Fredericton (1994, '97), NB, and Cassie Campbell (1994, '97) of Brampton, ON, four-time World Champions Geraldine Heaney of North York, ON and Judy Diduck of Sherwood Park, AB, Fiona Smith of Edam, SK, a World Champion in 1997 and Becky Kellar of Hagarsville, ON, a rookie with the Women's National Team.
The forwards include two four-time World Champions - France St-Louis, of St-Hubert, QC, at 39, the oldest player on the team, and Stacy Wilson of Moncton, NB. Jennifer Botterill of Winnipeg, MB joins the team for the first time and, at 18 years old, is the youngest on the roster. The forwards also include Lori Dupuis (1997 World Champion) of Williamstown, ON, Kathy McCormack of Fredericton, NB, making her first appearance on the National Team, Danielle Goyette (1992, '94, '97 World Champion) of St-Nazaire, QC, Jayne Hefford (1997) of Kingston, ON, Nancy Drolet (1992, ;94, '97) of Drummondville, QC, Hayley Wickenheiser (1994, '97) of Calgary, as well as Laura Schuler (1990, '92, '97), Vicky Sunohara (1990, '97) and Karen Nystrom (1992, '94, '97), all of Scarborough, ON.
Four players were released on Monday, including four-time World Champion Angela James of North York, ON, Tammy Shewchuk of St-Laurent, QC, Rebecca Fahey of Sackville, NB and Luce Letendre of Brossard, QC. Both Fahey and Letendre helped Canada win the gold medal at the Women's World Hockey Championship in Kitchener, ON last April.
Team Canada departs for Lake Placid on Friday to compete in the 3 Nations' Cup tournament against the United States and Finland, which are seeded second and third in the Olympic tournament, respectively. The 3 Nations is a double round-robin tournament with the top two teams meeting in the gold medal game on Saturday, 20 December at Lake Placid. That game will be televised live on TSN, beginning at 3:30 p.m. EST.
Following a break for the Christmas holiday period, Team Canada will reassemble in Calgary and prepare for a final series of four games against the United States before departing for Japan on January 30. Canada opens play in the Olympic tournament against the host Japanese on February 8. The gold medal game is scheduled for February 17.
|30||Reddon, Lesley||15/11/70||Fredericton, NB||5'8"||130||G/G||L/G|
|Defence / Défence (6)|
|4||Kellar, Becky||01/01/75||Hagarsville, ON||5'7"||150||D/D||L/G|
|6||Brisson, Therese||05/10/66||Fredericton, NB||5'7"||150||D/D||R/D|
|9||Smith, Fiona||31/10/73||Edam, SK||5'2"||124||D/D||L/G|
|21||Diduck, Judy||21/04/66||Sherwood Park, AB||5'6"||145||D/D||L/G|
|77||Campbell, Cassie||22/11/73||Brampton, ON||5'6"||134||D/D||L/G|
|91||Heaney, Geraldine||01/10/67||North York, ON||5'7"||135||D/D||R/D|
|3||St- Louis, France||17/10/58||St. Hubert, PQ||5'8"||145||F/A||L/G|
|7||Botterill, Jennifer||01/05/79||Winnipeg, MB||5'9"||157||F/A||L/G|
|12||Dupuis, Lori||14/11/72||Williamstown, ON||5'8"||165||F/A||L/G|
|14||McCormack, Kathy||16/02/74||Fredericton, NB||5'9"||165||F/A||L/G|
|15||Goyette, Danielle||30/01/66||St. Nazaire, PQ||5'7"||143||F/A||L/G|
|16||Hefford, Jayna||14/05/77||Kingston, ON||5'5'||135||F/A||L/G|
|17||Wilson, Stacy||12/5/65||Salisbury, NB||5'6"||130||F/A||L/G|
|18||Drolet, Nancy||02/08/73||Drummondville, PQ||5'6"||138||F/A||L/G|
|22||Wickenheiser, Hayley||8/12/78||Calgary, AB||5'9"||170||F/A||R/D|
|27||Schuler, Laura||03/12/70||Scarborough, ON||5'6"||142||F/A||L/G|
|61||Sunohara, Vicky||18/05/70||Scarborough, ON||5'7'||160||F/A||L/G|
|89||Nystrom, Karen||17/06/69||Scarborough, ON||5'6"||140||F/A||R/D|
|Head Coach||Shannon Miller|
|Assistant Coach||Danièle Sauvageau|
|Assistant Coach||Ray Bennett|
|Assistant Coach||Rob Cookson|
|Mentor coach||Clare Drake|
|Equipment Manager/Trainer||Todd Jackson|
|Athletic Therapist||Carrie Smith|
|Massage therapist||Holly Mair|
|Manager, Female programs||Glynis Peters|
|Media relations||Joanne Gray|