“My dad would never let us win at Monopoly.”
One sentence pretty much sums up growing up in the Murray home in Medicine Hat, Alta., although the competiveness has certainly served the four daughters
of Paul and Kim Murray well.
Logan. Madi. Kelly. Eden. All have played NCAA or CIS hockey (or both, in the case of Kelly) and all have found varying levels of success with their club
teams on the national and international stages, making the Murrays one of the premier hockey families in Alberta.
But this week at Canada’s National Women’s Development Team selection camp provides an opportunity for a family first, and a new kind of competition – two
Murrays, facing off against each other at a national team camp.
On one side stands Kelly, 22, a defenceman with the University of British Columbia who is part of the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) team
participating in camp in advance of the 2017 Winter Universiade early next year.
On the other is Eden, 20, a Yale University forward and former IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship gold medallist with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18
Team, now trying to crack the roster with the development side.
The two met Tuesday night at camp, with Eden’s Red pulling out a 3-2 victory over Kelly’s CIS.
“It’s a special opportunity,” Kelly says of attending camp with her sister. “Not a lot of girls get to experience it, and it’s definitely nice to have a
little bit of home here.”
According to Eden, Tuesday was the first time the two sisters have been on opposing sides since their sport school days, when Pursuit of Excellence (Kelly)
took on the Edge School for Athletes (Eden).
Since then the two shared the ice with Alberta at the 2011 Canada Winter Games, winning a gold medal, but this week in Calgary is at a whole different
level, and comes with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity at the end.
Although Kelly is with the CIS team, its players are under consideration for Canada’s National Women’s Development Team for the three-game series against
the United States later this month, meaning Kelly and Eden could wear the red and white of Team Canada together.
“It’s something Eden and I have thought of and dreamed of since we played Team Alberta together, and won at Canada Winter Games, which was an experience in
itself,” Kelly says. “So to go up to the next level and be able to put on the Maple Leaf together would be an experience all its own.”
Not surprisingly, both sisters are quick to give most of the credit for their success to mom and dad, recognizing the sacrifices they made to help not only
Kelly and Eden, but all four Murrays make their hockey dreams a reality.
While Paul stayed close to home and built an auto empire – his Murray Auto Group includes 24 dealerships across Western Canada, and reaches as far east as
Yarmouth, N.S. – Kim was following her daughters wherever they needed to go.
“All four of us give a lot of credit to our parents; they both made sacrifices for us,” Kelly says. “My mom moved around with us, to B.C. and down with the
States [all four sisters attended Shattuck-St. Mary’s School in Faribault, Minn.], and my dad did long distance travelling to see us, and they really
instilled a very hard-working philosophy within the four of us.”
Paul and Kim are a little busy this week – the newest Murray dealership opened Monday in Strathmore, Alta., just 40 minutes east of Calgary – but they,
along with Logan and Madi, were at the Markin MacPhail Centre on Tuesday night for the on-ice family feud.
Which returns the conversation to the task at hand – selection camp, and a chance at Team Canada.
The sisters have put their close relationship to the side for the time being, sticking to quick waves and hellos in the hallway at the rink, and to general
text messages. “Mostly just at the end of the day,” Eden says. “Just touching base, ‘Hey, how did your day go? How was practice?’ Just the basics.”
That means no talk of what might be, no talk of the possibility of wearing Team Canada colours against the U.S., beginning Aug. 17. But that doesn’t mean
they aren’t thinking about it.
“It’s motivating us both even more than we already were,” Eden says. “It’s pretty special to have that opportunity. I can’t even describe it. It’s never
happened, to play alongside my sister representing our country, so I think it would be pretty surreal.”