CALGARY, Alta. – With less than six months until the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing, China, Hockey Canada has announced that 20 players that will be a part of Canada’s National Para Hockey Team throughout the 2021-22 season.
Two goaltenders, six defenceman and 12 forwards were selected by head coach Ken Babey (Saskatoon, Sask.) and Marshall Starkman (Thornhill, Ont.), manager of hockey operations. Assistant coaches Steve Arsenault (Edmonton, Alta.), Mike Foligno (Sudbury, Ont.) and Russ Herrington (Unionville, Ont.), along with goaltending consultant Mike Fountain (Gravenhurst, Ont.), also provided input.
The roster was selected from the 27 players that participated in Canada’s National Para Hockey Team selection camp, Sept. 3-10 in Calgary.
“We are excited to unveil the 20 players that will continue on with Canada’s National Para Hockey Team throughout the season as we look ahead to competing for a gold medal in Beijing,” said Babey. “We know we have selected a group that combines youth, speed, skill and experience, and we look forward to building towards the Paralympics and embracing the opportunity to wear the Maple Leaf on the biggest stage in sports.”
The roster features 15 players who won a silver medal at the 2021 IPC World Para Hockey Championship in Ostrava, Czech Republic (Armstrong, Bridges, Crane, Dunn, Halbert, Henry, Hickey, Jacobs-Webb, Kingsmill, Larocque, Lavin, Lehoux, McGregor, Sison, Westlake).
“We were impressed with the competitiveness of our selection camp, and we knew we would have some difficult decisions to make before the camp started. We feel we have selected a group of players that will continue to challenge each other throughout the season as they compete for a spot on our Paralympic roster,” said Starkman. “As we look ahead to Beijing, our players and staff are excited for the opportunity to represent Canada, and we look forward to bringing this group together throughout the season to build towards our goal of winning a Paralympic gold medal.”
Canada’s National Para Hockey Team will participate in several training camps and events throughout the 2021-22 season, pending the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This includes two scheduled series against the United States and the 2021 Canadian Tire Para Hockey Cup in Bridgewater, N.S.
Canada’s final roster for the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games is tentatively scheduled to be unveiled in February.
For more information on Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Para Hockey Team, please visit HockeyCanada.ca, or follow along via social media on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.