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Anatomy of an ambassador

One of the most decorated players in U SPORTS, and arguably the best, there’s no bigger cheerleader for Canadian women’s university hockey than Alex Poznikoff

Jason La Rose
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August 09, 2019

The phrase ‘been there, done that’ tends to be a little bit overused.

Unless you’re Alex Poznikoff. Because when it comes to women’s hockey in Canada, the University of Alberta star has been almost everywhere and done pretty much everything you can do in the game.

Where do we start? As a minor hockey standout, Poznikoff led her Edmonton Thunder to back-to-back-to-back trips to the Esso Cup, Canada’s National Female Midget Championship, from 2013-15.

During that run, she represented Alberta at the 2013 National Women’s Under-18 Championship, and cracked Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team roster for a three-game series against the U.S. in the summer of 2014.

A sought-after college recruit, Poznikoff spurned U.S. offers and decided to stay close to home and join a powerhouse Pandas program under head coach Howie Draper.

“I talked to quite a few NCAA schools, but I was always a fan of the Canadian game,” Poznikoff says. “I thought, ‘Why not to grow the Canadian game as a Canadian hockey player?’ I strongly believe that we have so much talent here that can stack up, and I wanted to make a difference.”

And she has. Poznikoff helped the Pandas to their eighth U SPORTS national championship in 2017, won silver with Canada at the 2017 Winter Universiade in Kazakhstan and made another international appearance with Canada’s National Women’s Development Team last summer.

Oh, and she won the Brodrick Trophy as the best player in Canadian women’s university hockey last season after leading all of U SPORTS in scoring, was a first-team All-Canadian and helped the Pandas back to the national tournament.

So … ya. Been there, done that.

As she pulls on the U SPORTS sweater once again as part of the BFL National Women’s Development Team Selection Camp in Calgary, her focus is the same as it was the first three times she came to camp – to do her part to showcase the talent that exists in Canadian women’s university hockey.

“I am a huge supporter of U SPORTS, and I would like to see the league progress and keep getting better and more recognized,” Poznikoff says. “This year, I wanted to come [to camp] and make sure all the girls were having a good time, while also proving that our league is stacking up where it should.”

But while she is a team-first player through and through (which might explain why she is wearing the ‘C’ with the university stars this week), Poznikoff admits there’s a selfish reason she likes coming to camp: Being amongst the best players in the country can only help her get better.

“That’s one of my favourite parts – you see these players, you play against some of them and you don’t really get to really see that different skill and talent,” she says. “So when you’re practicing with them, or warming up with them, or playing on lines, you’re talking to them and learning what they’re doing, and it does really expand your tool box.”

Poznikoff is also expanding her ever-growing list of teammates. She jokes that thanks to her U SPORTS and Team Canada connections, she could end up just about anywhere in the country and find a couch to sleep on.

That’s the beauty of the hockey community. Canada is huge, but the game makes it feel much smaller.

“[It’s about] being able to build relationships and have that sense of purpose and family outside of your actual family,” she says. “You spend more time with the girls at the rink during the season than your actual family sometimes, so to have those kinds of relationships with so many people is spectacular.”

Entering her fifth and final season of U SPORTS eligibility, Poznikoff has one year left to build on those relationships before it’s off to the ‘real world.’ She is waiting for the questions surrounding professional women’s hockey to be answered before she plots out too much of her future, but hockey will play a role in her post-Panda plans.

After all, for everything she’s done and everywhere she’s been, there’s still one big item on the to-do list.

“I want to keep the Olympic team in sight and shoot for that.”

Rosters announced for Canada’s National Women’s Program camps

71 players invited to National Women’s Development Team training camp and National Women’s Under-18 Team selection camp in August

NR.049.23
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July 14, 2023

CALGARY, AB. – Hockey Canada has invited 71 players to participate in Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team selection camp, presented by BFL CANADA and Canada’s National Women’s Development Team training camp, presented by BFL CANADA, set to take place this August in St. Catharines, ON.

As part of the under-18 team selection camp, 46 players – six goaltenders, 14 defence and 26 forwards  – will compete for an opportunity to represent Canada in a three-game series against the United States, Aug. 14-20 in Lake Placid, N.Y. Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team invitees will be split into two teams – Red and White - for practices, intrasquad games and off-ice sessions. They will also welcome Finland’s national women’s under-18 team, giving the U18 group an opportunity to experience international competition.

Included in the U18 roster are nine 2023 IIHF Women’s World Championship gold medallists – Mackenzie Alexander, Hannah Clark, Gracie Graham, Morgan Jackson, Caitlin Kraemer, Charlotte Pieckenhagen, Avery Pickering, Abby Stonehouse and Emma Venusio.

Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, QC)
, vice-president of hockey operations, led the player selection process in consultation with Cherie Piper (Scarborough, ON), senior manager of player development and scouting.

“We are thrilled with this group of 46 talented athletes who will participate in selection camp,” Kingsbury said. “We are confident this group will come ready to compete for a spot to wear the Maple Leaf in international competition as we work towards winning a third-consecutive gold medal at the world championship.”

Twenty-three players – three goaltenders, seven defence and 13 forwards  – will also take to the ice in St. Catharines during the training camp for the development team, Aug. 9-13 ahead of its three-game series against the United States, Aug. 14-20.

The roster includes 12 players who won gold at U18 Women’s Worlds in 2022 or 2023 - Jocelyn Amos, Alexia Aubin, Jordan Baxter, Brooke Disher, Tova Henderson, Jade Iginla, Alex Law, Sarah MacEachern, Ava Murphy, Emmalee Pais, Alyssa Regalado and Sara Swiderski – and five players who were part of the development series against the U.S. last summer – Anne Cherkowski, Hannah Murphy, Sara Swiderski, Maddi Wheeler and Sarah Wozniewicz. Ashley Messier and Sarah Paul, who participated in the development series last summer, were invited but are unable to participate this year.

“We have an exciting group of accomplished athletes joining our development program this year in St. Catharines,” Kingsbury added. “We are looking forward to watching this group return to the ice for a competitive camp in preparation for our series against the United States.”

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Program, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Coaching staffs named for national women's teams

Troy Ryan, Kori Cheverie and Tara Watchorn to lead national teams during 2023-24 season

NR.047.23
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July 07, 2023

CALGARY, Alta. Hockey Canada has unveiled the coaching staffs for Canada’s National Women’s Team, Canada’s National Women’s Development Team and Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team for the 2023-24 season, with seven alumnae among those behind the bench.

Troy Ryan (Spryfield, NS) returns for his fourth year behind the bench as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Team, joined by assistant coaches Kori Cheverie (New Glasgow, NS), Caroline Ouellette (Montreal, QC/Concordia University, RSEQ) and Courtney Birchard-Kessel (Mississauga, ON/Boston University, HE), as well as goaltending consultant Brad Kirkwood (Calgary, AB) and video coach Andrew Boucher (Timmins, ON).

“We’re excited about the coaching staff, including a number of alumnae, we have assembled for our women’s programs for the upcoming season,” said Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, QC), vice-president of hockey operations. “We are grateful for the commitment many of our coaches make to return year after year to lead and develop our athletes, and look forward to the leadership and expertise they will bring in leading our teams on the international stage.”

Ryan recently became the first coach to serve on the coaching staff for both Canada’s National Men’s Team and Canada’s National Women’s Team, winning a gold medal as an assistant at the 2023 IIHF World Championship and silver as head coach at the 2023 IIHF Women’s World Championship. Ryan is going into his fifth season as head coach of the National Women’s Team after serving as an assistant coach for nearly four seasons (2016-19). Ryan coached Team Canada to back-to-back gold medals at the IIHF Women’s World Championship (2021, 2022), in addition to a gold medal at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games. He also earned a silver medal at the 2018 Olympics, silver Women’s Worlds in 2017 and bronze in 2019.

Cheverie won a silver medal as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Team at the 2023 IIHF Women’s World Championship. She also added gold medals as an assistant at Women’s Worlds in 2021 and 2022, and at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games. Cheverie became the first woman to serve on the coaching staff with one of Canada’s national men’s teams at the 2022 IIHF U18 World Championship. Nationally, she won a silver medal as head coach of Team Nova Scotia at the 2023 Canada Winter Games, the province’s first-ever medal in women’s hockey. She was also the first woman hired as a full-time assistant coach in U SPORTS with the Ryerson University men’s hockey team for five seasons (2016-21).

Ouellette was recently announced as an honoured member of the Hockey Hall of Fame’s Class of 2023. In May, she was also inducted into the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) Hall of Fame. She is entering her third season as the associate head coach at Concordia University. Internationally, she won a silver medal as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Team at the 2023 IIHF Women’s World Championship, along with gold in 2022 and bronze in 2019. As a player, she won four Olympic gold medals and six world championships during an illustrious 17-year international career.

Birchard-Kessel is entering her first year as an assistant coach at Boston University. Prior to joining BU, she spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Princeton University women’s hockey team (2019-23). She won a gold medal as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2023 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship, and gold as an assistant at U18 Women’s Worlds in 2019, and has been an assistant with Canada’s National Women’s Development Team on two occasions (2017, 2019).

Canada’s National Women’s Team will head to southern Ontario for its Fall Festival training camp from Sept. 10-17, in preparation for the 2023-24 season, which includes the Rivalry Series, with dates and locations to be announced in the future. The season will conclude with the 2024 IIHF Women’s World Championship, tentatively scheduled for April 2024 in Utica, New York.

For a full list of staff for Canada’s National Women’s Team and a list of camp support staff, please click here.

Cheverie returns as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Development Team, alongside assistant coaches Rachel Flanagan (Pontypool, ON/University of Guelph, OUA) , Noémie Marin (Acton Vale, QC/John Abbott College, CEGEP) and Cassandra Turner (Campbellford, ON/Quinnipiac University, ECAC), as well as goaltending coach Sheldon Goertzen (Saskatoon, SK/University of Saskatchewan, CW) and Boucher as video coach.

Flanagan recently completed her 16th season as head coach of the University of Guelph women’s hockey team. During her tenure, Flanagan has led the Gryphons to a U SPORTS national title in 2019, in addition to three Ontario University Athletics (OUA) titles, and she has been named the OUA Coach of the Year on five occasions. She served as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Team during the Rivalry Series in December 2022, has served as an assistant with Canada’s National Women’s Development Team three times (2011, 2012, 2022) and was recognized as a BFL Female Coach of the Year in 2020-21.

Marin is entering her ninth season as the women’s hockey head coach at John Abbott College. She was previously the head coach of Kuper Academy (2012-14). Marin led the development team as head coach during the 2016-17 season and was an assistant with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2015 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship. On the national stage, she was an assistant with Quebec at the 2015 National Women’s Under-18 Championship and led Quebec to silver as head coach at the 2019 Canada Winter Games.

Turner is entering her ninth season as head coach of Quinnipiac’s women’s hockey team, having led the Bobcats to the quarterfinals of the NCAA tournament in each of the last two seasons. In 2015-16, her first season as head coach, she led the team to 30 wins, an NCAA record for wins by a first-year women’s hockey head coach. Turner captured a silver medal as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2015 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship, and won gold as an assistant in 2014.

Following her role as an assistant coach during the 2022-23 season, Tara Watchorn (Newcastle, ON/Boston University, HE) takes the reins as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team. She will be joined by assistant coaches Stefanie McKeough (Carlsbad Springs, ON/University of Ottawa, OUA) and Vicky Sunohara (Scarborough, ON/University of Toronto, OUA) , as well as goaltending coach Gord Woodhall (Winnipeg, MB/Winnipeg, MFHL) and video coach Stef Thomson (Oshawa, ON)

Watchorn was named head coach of Boston University in April, becoming the first alumna of the women’s program to serve as its head coach. She served as the first head coach of Stonehill College’s women’s hockey team (2021-23), earning NEWHA Coach of the Year honours in the program’s inaugural season. Prior to joining Stonehill, Watchorn served as an assistant coach with BU for four seasons (2017-20). A 2014 Olympic gold medallist as a player, she won back-to-back gold medals as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship in 2022 and 2023.

McKeough recently completed her third season as an assistant coach with the University of Ottawa women’s hockey team. Prior to joining the Gee-Gees, she served as head coach of Göteborg HC of the Svenka Damhockeyligen (SDHL) in Sweden during the 2020 season following two years as an assistant. As a player, McKeough won a silver medal with Canada at the 2009 IIHF World Women’s U18 Championship.

Sunohara is entering her 13th season as head coach of the University of Toronto women’s hockey team, winning both OUA and U SPORTS Coach of the Year honours in three consecutive seasons (2020-23) and leading the Blues to the OUA championship last spring. She won a gold medal as an assistant coach at the 2022 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship. Internationally, Sunohara won two Olympic gold medals in addition to seven world championship golds, and ranks 10th in all-time Team Canada scoring with 119 points (56-63—119) in 164 career games.

Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team will gather in St. Catharines, Ont., for selection camp from Aug. 9-13 in advance of a three-game series against the United States, Aug. 14-20 in Lake Placid, New York. It will chase a third-consecutive gold medal at the 2024 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship in Switzerland, Jan. 6-14.

For a full list of staff for Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team and a list of camp support staff, please click here.

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Program, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook , Twitter and Instagram .

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2022 Women's Series Recap: Wednesday, August 20

Canada’s under-18 team finished with a sweep of the United States, while the development team dropped its series finale.

August 21, 2022

CALGARY, Alta. – Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team completed a series sweep with a 7-2 win over the United States, while Canada’s National Women’s Development Team fell 2-1 to the U.S. in the final game of its series.

Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team

  • Keira Hurry (London, Ont./London, OWHA U22 Elite) lead the way with two goals, including the first of her international career.
  • Abby Stonehouse (London, Ont./London, OWHA U22 Elite) also netted her first Team Canada goal.
  • Jocelyn Amos (Ailsa Craig, Ont./London, OWHA U22 Elite) registered a goal and an assist.
  • Mackenzie Alexander (Toronto, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite), Alexia Aubin (Lévis, Que./Stanstead College, JWHL) and Caitlin Kraemer (Kitchener, Ont./Kitchener, OWHA U22 Elite) rounded out the scoring.
  • Piper Grober (Toronto, Ont./Durham West, OWHA U22 Elite), Ava Murphy (Kitchener, Ont./ Oakville, OWHA U22 Elite) and Abby Lunney each recorded three assists.
  • Emma Venusio (Toronto, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite) chipped in with a helper.
  • Hannah Clark (Ajax, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite) made 27 saves.

Full game stats are available at HockeyCanada.ca

Canada’s National Development Team

  • Sophie Shirley (Saskatoon, Sask./University of Wisconsin, WCHA) scored the lone goal.
  • Ashley Messier (Wilcox, Sask./Syracuse University, CHA) and Stephanie Markowski (Edmonton, Alta./Cornell University, ECAC) recorded an assist each.
  • Raygan Kirk (Ste. Anne, Man./Ohio State University, WCHA) made 18 saves before giving way to Kayle Osborne (Rideau Lakes, Ont./Colgate University, ECAC), who made 12 stops.

Full game stats are available at HockeyCanada.ca.

Quotes:


“We wanted to do what we’ve done the last two games - come out with speed, apply pressure and play as a team. That is exactly what we did. It was so nice to see a lot of different players get goals today. We won the series and we will celebrate today, but tomorrow we go back to work. If we bring the same game we had today [to women’s U18 worlds in December] we are going to be successful because we care about each other and want each other to be successful.”

-         Under-18 head coach Courtney Kessel (Mississauga, Ont./Princeton University, ECAC) on completing the series sweep

 

“It is a great feeling to win, [the sweep] shows how tight knit of a group we are. We have been really close and brought energy to every game. Everyone was buzzing, we got a lot of offence going all game. We did not spend a lot of time in our [defensive] zone, which created opportunities for us. The scoreboard shows that we were able to capitalize on those [opportunities].”

-         Grober on finding offence in the last game of the series

 

After I scored, I was jumping up and down, celebrating with my teammates from London. I have no words, really. I was pumped. We are a tight group; we all pump each other up. The past three weeks have been the best experience of my life, it was a dream come true when I heard that I made the team. We have a great group here; I couldn’t ask for anything more.

-         Stonehouse on scoring her first international goal

 

“The vibe from our group was outstanding today. Anytime you can play against the [United States] it’s going to be a close, hard-fought battle. We lost the game, but I could not be more proud of the effort we put forth. [Our players] were doing everything that we wanted them to do. They were trying things, working on the concepts we talked about. Their effort was there. Unfortunately, we did not get that game-tying goal but it did not come without the effort.”

-         Development head coach Kori Cheverie (New Glasgow, N.S.) on her team’s effort in the final game of the series

 

“Coming to camp has been a really good experience. I had a great experience in the dressing room and getting to know my teammates. Our group stayed together. We got better in that third game as it went on. I know our coaches were really happy with our effort and fight. Every girl on our team left it all out there. We wanted it, but it just was not our day today. I know in the future we are going to give [the United States] another really tough battle.”

-          Sara Swiderski (Langley, B.C./Clarkson University, ECAC) on coming up short in the third game

 

It was such a hard-fought series; we left it all out there each game. I’m super proud of this group. We never gave up, especially today. It shows what it means to wear the Maple Leaf. There was lots of energy today, which was awesome to see. The character in the locker room showed, you could see the resiliency, the work ethic, the camaraderie. We really rallied together, which is what makes it fun to play hockey.

-         Megan Carter (Milton, Ont./University of British Columbia, CW) on the feeling in the locker room

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Development and Under-18 Teams, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along through social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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2022 Women's Series Recap: Wednesday, August 18

Canada’s women’s U18 team secured its series while the development team dropped the middle game of its series.

August 19, 2022

CALGARY, Alta. – Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team secured a series win against the United States with a 4-0 victory while Canada’s National Women’s Development Team dropped the second game of its series 4-1 to the U.S.

Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team

  • Abby Lunney (Newmarket, Ont./Central York, OWHA U22 Elite) scored the first goal of her international career while Caitlin Kraemer (Kitchener, Ont./Kitchener, OWHA U22 Elite), Jordan Baxter (New Westminster, B.C./Delta Hockey Academy, CSSHL) and Emmalee Pais (London, Ont./London, OWHA U22 Elite) also found the back of the net.
  • Keira Hurry (London, Ont./London, OWHA U22 Elite), Mackenzie Alexander (Toronto, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite), Piper Grober (Toronto, Ont./Durham West, OWHA U22 Elite) and Jaimee Spring (Cranbrook, B.C./Rink Hockey Academy, CSSHL) all registered an assist.
  • Arianne Leblanc (Terrebonne, Que./Stanstead College, JWHL) made 25 saves for her first international shutout.

Full game stats are available at HockeyCanada.ca

Canada’s National Development Team

  • Maggie Connors (St. John’s, N.L./Princeton University, ECAC) provided the lone goal.
  • Danielle Serdachny (Edmonton, Alta./Colgate University, ECAC) and Sophie Shirley (Saskatoon, Sask./University of Wisconsin, WCHA) each contributed with an assist.
  • Hannah Murphy (Bradford, Ont./Colgate University, ECAC) finished with 33 stops.

Full game stats are available at HockeyCanada.ca.

Next Games:

Under-18: Canada vs. United States – Saturday, August 20 (6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT)
Development: Canada vs. United States – Saturday, August 20 (9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT)

Quotes:

“We committed to the game plan. We were aggressive on our forecheck while maintaining a great backcheck and still brought the same energy and aggressiveness [as yesterday]. LeBlanc held in there and made some fantastic saves. We wouldn’t be where we are without her. We do not want to leave here with just two [wins], we are going for that third win on Saturday.”

-         Under-18 head coach Courtney Kessel (Mississauga, Ont./Princeton University, ECAC) on shutting out the Americans

“My teammates were there for me when I needed them, [they] blocked a couple of hard shots and passes on two-on-ones. It still feels unreal, I cannot believe I played my first game in the Maple Leaf. I tried to take it as a normal game, shot by shot. As the minutes ticked down it felt so good and when [the clock] hit zero I was just happy to celebrate with my teammates.”

-         Leblanc on posting a shutout

We have lots of support and trust with each other. We know how to move the puck around great. It has been a couple of great team wins so far; we are together in everything. We are definitely looking for another team win, focusing on our habits and bringing it to the [United States].

-         Kraemer on the full team effort

“We need to re-group tomorrow and establish good habits. Sticking to our habits and executing is what makes our team so great. Our execution was not there tonight. This group has fought hard for the past two weeks. They deserve to be here and know the magnitude of this opportunity. We have not won a series against the United States in the past four years. It is important to win these opportunities.”

-         Development head coach Kori Cheverie (New Glasgow, N.S.) on getting back on track for the series finale

“On Saturday we need to work on our consistency and keeping our work ethic the whole time. In the room, the main message is that we have an opportunity here. We have an opportunity to represent Canada and go into the third [deciding] game against the Americans. We have a great chance to win it here on Saturday.”

-          Connors on the changes needed heading into the series-deciding game

They played hard. Talking in the room, we had blips of greatness but the key is doing that consistently. That’s something we did not do tonight. Moving forward we are ready to learn from [tonight] and move on. Any time you can play against the United States, those are games you want to play in. I always feel proud to get to play in these games and do my best to make the most of it.

-         Shirley on the opportunity to play against the Americans

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Development and Under-18 Teams, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along through social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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2022 Women's Series Recap: Wednesday, August 17

Canada’s women’s U18 and development teams both needed shootouts to secure wins in their series openers.

August 18, 2022

CALGARY, Alta. – Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team tied the game in the final minute of the third period before besting the United States in the seventh round of the shootout, securing a 6-5 win in its series opener, while Canada’s National Women’s Development Team also needed a shootout to capture a 4-3 win in the first game of its series against the U.S. Wednesday night.

Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team

  • Jocelyn Amos (Ailsa Craig, Ont./London, OWHA U22 Elite) scored the game-tying goal with just over 40 seconds to go in the third period and added two assists.
  • Caitlin Kraemer (Kitchener, Ont./Kitchener, OWHA U22 Elite) had a goal and an assist.
  • Emma Venusio (Toronto, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite), Charlotte Pieckenhagen (Toronto, Ont./Mississauga, OWHA U22 Elite) and Mackenzie Alexander (Toronto, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite) rounded out the scoring with a goal each.
  • Alex Law (Markham, Ont./Durham West, OWHA U22 Elite), Jordan Baxter (New Westminster, B.C./Delta Hockey Academy, CSSHL) and Morgan Jackson (Courtenay, B.C./Vancouver Island, BCEHL) all chipped in with an assist.
  • Abby Lunney (Newmarket, Ont./Central York, OWHA U22 Elite) found the back of the net twice in the shootout, including the game-winner in the seventh round.  
  • Farah Walker (Calgary, Alta./Okanagan, CSSHL) made seven saves in the Canadian goal before giving way to Hannah Clark (Ajax, Ont./Etobicoke, OWHA U22 Elite), who made five saves in relief and earned the win.

Full game stats are available at HockeyCanada.ca


Canada’s National Development Team

  • Danielle Serdachny (Edmonton, Alta./Colgate University, ECAC) led the way with a pair of goals in regulation, and also scored in the shootout.
  • Julia Gosling (London, Ont./St. Lawrence University, ECAC) contributed a goal in the second period and scored the game-winner in the fifth round of the shootout.
  • Lexie Adzija (St. Thomas, Ont./Quinnipiac University, ECAC), Maddi Wheeler (Erinsville, Ont./University of Wisconsin, WHCA) and Ashley Messier (Wilcox, Sask./Syracuse University, CHA) each provided an assist.
  • Kayle Osborne (Rideau Lakes, Ont./Colgate University, ECAC) made 33 saves.

Full game stats are available at HockeyCanada.ca.


Next Games:

Under-18: Canada vs. United States – Thursday, August 18 (6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT)
Development: Canada vs. United States – Thursday, August 18 (9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT)


Quotes:

“We played super aggressive; our forecheck was fantastic all game and I think that’s what led to all of our opportunities. We had pretty much every kind of situation thrown [at us], which is great as a staff to work through. We need to bring the same energy we brought today and play 60-minute games moving forward.”

-         Under-18 head coach Courtney Kessel (Mississauga, Ont./Princeton University, ECAC) on the series opener

“Our team really stuck together and that really helped us. We kept the energy high on the bench and I think all of our hard work translated to that goal. We were all really excited when we saw it go in, there was a dog pile on the ice which was fun. We are just going to keep getting better from here; our pressure was insane throughout the game, so we are climbing the ladder.”

-         Amos on scoring the game-tying goal with 40 seconds to go

It was really exciting. I’ve never played in that high-level of a game before, so it felt great [to tie the game]. Hannah Clark was telling me to just make my move, so I listened to my goalie and it helped me. We need to keep working hard in practice, in cooldown, in warmup, whatever it is and that will help us moving forward.

-         Lunney on her team tying the game late in the third and her success in the shootout


“We showed growth in that first game; we didn’t have the best start but we had some important conversations during the television timeouts that turned the tides for us. This group takes ownership for their play and the second half of the game was unreal. I felt pretty passionate during the game, the girls were doing everything they could to help us win. It is always special getting a win.”

-         Development head coach Kori Cheverie (New Glasgow, N.S.) on getting the first win of the series


“I liked the resiliency of our group, even with the late goal [against] at the end, we never stopped believing in ourselves which is what got us the win at the end. We have some great leaders in our group, I’m learning from them every day. We need to keep the same game plan, focus on our habits with our penalties and power plays and I think we will be good.”

-          Gosling on what it took to get the win


It is always a good, competitive game playing the U.S. We didn’t get down after that first goal and that was important for us. We need to bring a lot of energy, both teams will be tired as it is a competitive series. Being supportive with teammates and lifting each other up will be huge [moving forward].

-         Serdachny on the win and what is needed tomorrow

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Development and Under-18 Teams, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along through social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Canada’s National Women’s Development Team and National Women’s Under-18 Team set to face United States

Three-game series versus American rivals run Aug. 17-20

NR.043.22
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August 14, 2022

CALGARY, Alta. – Following an 11-day selection camp, 46 players have been named to Canada’s National Women’s Development Team and Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team for a pair of three-game series against the United States, Aug. 17-20 at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park in Calgary.

A total of 142 players were invited to attend selection camps as part of the BFL National Women’s Program Summer Showcase, which involved on- and off-ice training, classroom sessions and fitness testing. Canada’s National Women’s Development Team was selected following the National Women’s Team selection camp, which included six intrasquad games. The National Women's Under-18 Team selection camp included games against Finland’s national women’s under-18 team before players were chosen to compete against the United States.

“Gathering players at our development and under-18 levels for assessment and scouting is an integral part in the growth of our athletes, especially as we begin preparations for a new four-year cycle leading into the 2026 Olympics,” said Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, Que.), director of hockey operations. “Our three-game series against the Americans, who share a historic past with our program, will allow us to begin to identify athletes in our system who will be competing at the highest international level for us in the coming years.”

Canada’s National Women’s Development Team

The roster for the U.S. series includes 23 players (two goaltenders, seven defence and 13 forwards). It features:

-      Six players who played for Canada’s National Women’s Development Team in a three-game series against the United States in Lake Placid, N.Y., in August 2019 (Connors, Fecteau, Gosling, Kirk, Potomak, Shirley)

-      One player who won a gold medal with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2022 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship in Madison, Wis. (Swiderski

Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team

The roster for the U.S. series includes 23 players (three goaltenders, seven defence and 13 forwards). It features:

-      Seven players who won a gold medal with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2022 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship in Madison, Wis. (Amos, Aubin, Baxter, Grober, Law, Murphy, Pais

-      One player who participated in the 2022 Esso Cup, Canada’s National Women’s U18 Club Championship in Okotoks, Alta. (Caron)

Following the series, Hockey Canada, led by Kingsbury in coordination with Cherie Piper (Scarborough, Ont.), senior manager of player development and scouting, and with consultation from regional scouts and the U18 coaching staff, will continue to assess players with their club teams throughout the first part of the 2022-23 season in preparation for selecting the Canadian team that will compete at the 2023 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship, Jan. 8-15, 2023 in Östersund and Brunflo, Sweden. Additionally, all players will be considered for possible invites to future camps and events with Canada’s National Women’s Team.

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Program, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow through social media on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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142 players invited to BFL National Women’s Program selection camp

Selection camp welcomes under-18, development and senior athletes to Calgary to open 2022-23 season

NR.039.22
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July 29, 2022

CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada has invited 142 of the nation’s top players to attend the BFL National Women’s Program selection camp, set to take place Aug. 3-14 at the Markin MacPhail Centre at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park.

The 11-day camp will bring together athletes vying for spots on Canada’s National Women’s Team, Canada’s National Women’s Development Team and Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team as a start to the 2022-23 season and a new four-year Olympic cycle.

Player selections were led by Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, Que.), director of hockey operations with Hockey Canada, along with Cherie Piper (Scarborough, Ont.), senior manager of player development and scouting, and Troy Ryan (Spryfield, N.S.), head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Team.

“This is a great opportunity to bring all three groups together in one place and start to envision what the next four years will look like,” said Kingsbury. “We are coming off a very successful season and we are looking to continue building on that. We have a full complement of experienced staff to lead our camps but having our Olympic athletes able to play leadership roles where they can mentor and share their experience is a positive step in our journey towards the 2026 Olympic Winter Games in Milan.”

Canada’s National Women’s Team and Canada’s National Women’s Development Team hopefuls will be split into four teams for practices, intrasquad games and off-ice sessions. Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team invitees will be split into two teams – Red and White - for practices, intrasquad games and off-ice sessions. They will also welcome Finland’s national women’s under-18 team, giving the U18 group an opportunity to experience international competition.

Following the selection camp, the cross-border series with the United States will be re-introduced for the first time since 2019. Player selections will be made by Ryan, Kori Cheverie (New Glasgow, N.S./N.-E.) and Courtney Birchard-Kessel (Mississauga, Ont./Princeton University, ECAC) , head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team, with input from Piper and Kingsbury. Team Canada will also face Finland on Aug. 14 in a final tune-up before the Canada-U.S. series.

The selection camp is also a critical step for Canada’s National Women’s Team in preparation for the 2022 IIHF Women’s World Championship, Aug. 24-Sept. 4 in Herning and Frederikshavn, Denmark. Canada is expected to play Denmark and the United States in a pair of pre-tournament games prior to the start of the women’s worlds.

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Program, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook , Twitter and Instagram.

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Staffs named for Canada’s National Women’s Program ahead of 2022-23 season

10 coaches included on staffs for three National Women’s Teams

NR.035.22
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July 21, 2022

CALGARY, Alta. – The stage is set for Canada’s National Women’s Team, Canada’s National Women’s Development Team and Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team for the 2022-23 season, with 10 coaches set to serve behind the bench, including an all-woman staff for the under-18 team.

Troy Ryan (Spryfield, N.S.) returns for his third year as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Team, joined by assistant coaches Kori Cheverie (New Glasgow, N.S.), Alison Domenico (Ottawa, Ont./Providence College, HE) and Caroline Ouellette (Montreal, Que./Concordia University, RSEQ), as well as goaltending coach Brad Kirkwood (Calgary, Alta./University of Calgary, CW) and video coach James Emery (Calgary, Alta.).

“We are thrilled to welcome Troy, Kori, Ali, Brad and James back to our National Women’s Team for another season, and to add a high-caliber coach like Caroline to our staff,” said Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, Que.), director of hockey operations with Hockey Canada. “Our women’s program is looking to build off of the momentum we gained last season, and we believe we have assembled a staff that will allow us to do exactly that while benefitting our athletes.”

Ryan most recently led Canada to gold medals at the 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship and 2022 Olympic Winter Games. He also earned a silver medal at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, silver at the 2017 IIHF Women’s World Championship and bronze at the 2019 IIHF Women’s World Championship as an assistant coach. He has served as the Atlantic Canada female coach mentor with the Canadian Sport Centre Atlantic since 2016.

Cheverie won gold medals as an assistant coach at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games and 2021 IIHF Women’s World Championship. She became the first woman to serve as a coach with one of Canada's national men's teams at the 2022 IIHF U18 World Championship and was also the first woman hired as a full-time assistant coach in U SPORTS, where she was an assistant the Ryerson University men's hockey team for five seasons (2016-21).

Domenico recently finished her first season as associate head coach with the Providence College women’s hockey team following three seasons as an assistant coach. Most recently, she won a gold medal as an assistant coach at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games. She was also named an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team for the 2021-22 season before being added to the Olympic coaching staff.

Ouellette is entering her second season as associate head coach of the women’s hockey team at Concordia University after serving as interim head coach during the 2020-21. On the international stage, she won bronze as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Team at the 2019 IIHF Women’s World Championship and silver with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2009 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship. As a player, she won four Olympic gold medals and six world titles with Canada’s National Women’s Team during a 17-year international career.

Canada’s National Women’s Team will gather in Calgary for selection camp from Aug. 2-14 ahead of the 2022 IIHF Women’s World Championship, set for Aug. 24-Sept. 4 in Herning and Frederikshavn, Denmark.

FOR A FULL LIST OF STAFF FOR CANADA’S NATIONAL WOMEN’S TEAM AND A LIST OF CAMP SUPPORT STAFF, PLEASE CLICK HERE

On the under-18 side, Courtney Birchard-Kessel (Mississauga, Ont./Princeton University, ECAC) will make her international head coaching debut with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team. She will be joined by assistant coaches Stefanie McKeough (Carlsbad Springs, Ont./University of Ottawa, OUA) and Tara Watchorn (Newcastle, Ont./Stonehill College, NEWHA), as well as goaltending coach Gord Woodhall (Winnipeg, Man./Winnipeg, MFHL) and video coach Stef Thomson (Oshawa, Ont.).

Birchard-Kessel has been an assistant coach with the Princeton University women’s hockey team for the past three seasons (2019-22). She also won a gold medal as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2019 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship, and has been an assistant with Canada’s National Women’s Development Team twice (2017, 2019).

McKeough recently completed her second season as an assistant coach with the University of Ottawa women’s hockey team (2020-22). She previously served as head coach of Göteborg HC of the Svenka Damhockeyligen (SDHL) in Sweden during the 2020 season after two years (2018-19) as an assistant. As a player, McKeough won a silver medal with Canada at the 2009 IIHF World Women’s U18 Championship.

Watchorn is preparing for the first season of women’s hockey at Stonehill College after serving as an assistant coach with Boston College for four seasons (2017-20). She recently won a gold medal as an assistant coach with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2022 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship, and was an assistant with Canada’s National Women’s Development Team for a three-game series against the United States in 2019.

Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team will gather in Calgary from Aug. 2-14 for selection ahead of a three-game series against the United States, Aug. 17-20, as well as the 2023 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship in Sweden. 

FOR A FULL LIST OF STAFF FOR CANADA’S NATIONAL UNDER-18 WOMEN’S TEAM AND A LIST OF CAMP SUPPORT STAFF, PLEASE CLICK HERE

Cheverie will also take the reigns as head coach of Canada’s National Women’s Development Team, joined by assistant coaches Rachel Flanagan (Pontypool, Ont./University of Guelph, OUA) and Marc-André Côté (Montreal, Que./University of Moncton, AUS), as well as goaltending coach Perry Wilson (LaSalle, Ont./University of Windsor, OUA) and video coach Richard Bue (Ottawa, Ont.).

Flanagan is entering her 16th season as head coach of the University of Guelph women’s hockey team, where she helped secure the team’s first-ever national championship in 2019. She has also captured five Ontario University Athletics (OUA) titles, has been named the OUA Coach of the Year on five occasions, has served as assistant coach of Canada’s National Women’s Development Team twice (2011, 2012) and was named a BFL Female Coach of the Year in 2021.

Côté recently served as head coach of the University of Moncton women’s hockey team for two seasons (2018-20) after spending the previous five seasons (2013-18) as an assistant coach, where he won an Atlantic University Sport (AUS) championship. He also served as a camp coach at Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team selection camp in 2022.

Canada’s National Women’s Development Team will join Canada’s National Women’s Team for selection camp in Calgary from Aug. 2-14 and will compete in a three-game series against the United States from Aug. 17-20.

“This is an exciting time for Canada’s National Women’s Program as we welcome a staff of experienced coaches that have been involved at many levels of our program to lead our National Women’s Under-18 Team and National Women’s Development Team this season,” Kingsbury said. “It is also exciting to have all three of our national women’s teams in Calgary to kick off a new hockey season, and we look forward to welcoming our athletes and assembling teams for multiple events this summer.”

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Program, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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Forty-three players invited to BFL National Women’s Development Team Summer Camp, presented by Sobeys

Twenty-three NextGen athletes invited to participate in camp

NR.027.21
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July 14, 2021

CALGARY, Alta. – Canada’s National Women’s Development Team will return to the ice for the first time in two years, with 43 athletes invited to participate in the BFL National Women’s Development Team Summer Camp, presented by Sobeys.

The 40 players who will attend camp – six goaltenders, 12 defence and 22 forwards – will be split into two teams and participate in practices and intrasquad games from July 29-Aug. 9 at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park in Calgary. The camp will also feature two scrimmages against Canada’s National Women’s Team from Aug. 7-9.

“The COVID-19 pandemic really impacted this group of athletes with limited ice time, and the opportunity to bring everyone together with an elite group of coaches will benefit them as they prepare for the upcoming season,” said Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, Que.), director of hockey operations with Hockey Canada. ““We look forward to welcoming our development athletes back to Calgary for summer camp, and we know this group will be excited to get on the ice together before a highly-anticipated season."

Hockey Canada has also named National Women’s Team alumnae Caroline Ouellette (Montreal, Que./Concordia University, RSEQ) and Vicky Sunohara (Scarborough, Ont./University of Toronto, OUA) head coaches for camp. They will work alongside assistant coaches Rachel Flanagan (Pontypool, Ont./University of Guelph, OUA), Chris MacKenzie (Niagara Falls, Ont./University of Connecticut, HE), Candice Moxley (Markham, Ont./Western University, OUA) and Dean Seymour (Saskatoon, Sask./PWHPA), as well as goaltending coach Perry Wilson (LaSalle, Ont./Windsor, OHL)

CLICK HERE FOR A FULL LIST OF DEVELOPMENT CAMP STAFF  

Twenty-three NextGen athletes invited to participate in camp

Hockey Canada has announced that 23 NextGen athletes (born in 2003) have been invited to Calgary to participate in the BFL National Women’s Under-18 Team Summer Development Camp, presented by Sobeys, July 29-Aug. 5 at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park. 

The roster, which includes three goaltenders, seven defence and 13 forwards, represents a group of athletes that attended Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team virtual summer camp last season, but were unable to participate in on-ice activities due to the pandemic. The NextGen athletes will practice and play games against both U18 camp teams.

“Despite our NextGen athletes attending our virtual summer camp last season, we wanted to make sure this age group had the opportunity to participate in a regular Hockey Canada summer camp,” said Kingsbury. “As with the rest of our athletes, the pandemic has limited the on-ice opportunities for this group, and we know this camp will provide a great opportunity for these athletes to get familiar with Canada’s National Women’s Program and to participate in a highly-competitive camp before heading to school for the upcoming season.”

Hockey Canada alumna Noémie Marin (Acton Vale, Que./John Abbott College, CEGEP) will lead the NextGen athletes as head coach throughout camp, alongside assistant coaches Chelsea Grills (Stittsville, Ont./University of Ottawa, OUA) and Cassie Turner (Campbellford, Ont./Quinnipiac University, ECAC), and goaltending coach Amanda Tapp (Calgary, Alta.).

CLICK HERE FOR A FULL LIST OF NEXTGEN CAMP STAFF

For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Development Team, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook and Twitter.

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Summer Showcase schedules announced for Canada’s national teams

Men’s, women’s and para hockey teams to host camps in Calgary

NR.024.21
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June 30, 2021

CALGARY, Alta. – After a 2020-21 season that saw limited on-ice opportunities and virtual summer camps, Hockey Canada has announced its men’s and women’s national teams will return to the ice in July for their annual summer camps.

From July 25-Aug. 10, Hockey Canada’s national team program, including the men’s under-18 and under-20 teams, and women’s under-18, NextGen (born in 2003), development and senior national teams, will gather in Calgary for a series of on- and off-ice activities for the first time since 2019.

“After a unique and difficult season, Hockey Canada is thrilled to provide our national team athletes and staff the opportunity to return to the ice for our annual summer camps in Calgary,” said Scott Salmond (Creston, B.C.), senior vice-president of national teams. “We look forward to hosting the top athletes and staff from across the country in July, and are excited to kick off our preparations for a new season and a number of international competitions.”

The Program of Excellence (POE) camps, which includes the men’s under-18 and under-20 programs, will take place at the Seven Chiefs Sportsplex on the Tsuut'ina Nation, while the BFL National Women’s Program Summer Showcase, presented by Sobeys, will take place at WinSport’s Canada Olympic Park. Canada’s National Para Hockey Team will also gather for a five-day off-ice boot camp in preparation for the 2021-22 season and 2022 Paralympic Winter Games.

“This year’s summer camps mark the first time that all levels of the National Women’s Program will participate in camp at the same time, helping us provide consistency with all our athletes and staff throughout the program,” said Gina Kingsbury (Rouyn-Noranda, Que.), director of women’s national teams. “Despite a difficult season, our athletes have done an excellent job of staying connected and working hard with limited resources, and we are excited to get back on the ice this summer as we work towards the upcoming season.”

The following national team camps and programs will be hosted in Calgary this summer:

• National Para Hockey Team boot camp (July 21-25)
• National Women’s Team pre-worlds camp (July 25-Aug. 10)
• National Men’s Under-18 Team summer development camp (July 26-Aug. 3)
• BFL National Women’s Under-18 Team summer camp, presented by Sobeys (July 29-Aug. 5) – including NextGen athletes
• BFL National Women’s Development Team summer camp, presented by Sobeys (July 29-Aug. 9)
• National Junior Team summer development camp (July 29-Aug. 3)

In the coming weeks, Hockey Canada will announce the rosters and staffs for each national team program.

For more information on Hockey Canada, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook and Twitter.

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For more information:

Esther Madziya
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 284-6484 

[email protected] 

Spencer Sharkey
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 777-4567

[email protected]

Jeremy Knight
Manager, Corporate Communications
Hockey Canada

(647) 251-9738

[email protected]

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