CALGARY, Alta. – Hockey Canada announced on Monday the 22-player roster for Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team. The team is made up of the top Canadian female hockey players born in 1992 or later, and will gather for a three-game series against the United States’ Women’s Under-18 Select Team from August 24-27 in Calgary.
The players were selected to the roster following a national conditioning camp in May and a selection camp in July, both held in Calgary. Invitations to the conditioning and selection camps were based on evaluations done throughout the 2008-09 season by Hockey Canada’s regional scouts and the coaching staff of Canada’s National Women’s Team. Players were based on their performances at the 2008 National Women’s Under-18 Championship in Napanee, Ont., 2009 Esso Cup, Canada’s National Female Midget Championship, in Calgary and with their club teams.
“We are thrilled to be able to announce these 22 players today,” says Julie Healy, director of female hockey for Hockey Canada. “The selection camp in Calgary showed the depth that women’s hockey has in Canada, and we are confident the players we have chosen will represent Canada well against the United States.”
Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team includes two goaltenders, seven defencemen and 13 forwards. Twenty-one of the 22 players participated in the 2008 National Women’s Under-18 Championship, including four members of Ontario Red, which captured its fifth consecutive gold medal. Seven players (Bestland, Campbell, Daoust, Fratkin, Lacquette, Rattray, Saulnier) return from Canada’s silver medal-winning team at the 2009 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship in Füssen, Germany, while another (Poudrier) played in last year’s three-game series against the United States in Lake Placid, N.Y.
The 2009-10 season for Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team will include the three-game series against the United States in Calgary from August 24-27, as well as the 2010 IIHF World Women’s Under-18 Championship from March 27-April 3 in the United States.
The national under-18 program is an extension of Hockey Canada’s branch under-18 Programs of Excellence, which began in 1991 when women’s hockey was added to the Canada Winter Games. This season’s competition for the branch Program of Excellence teams, the 2009 National Women’s Under-18 Championship, will take place in Surrey, B.C. from November 4-8.
The roster announced Monday will not be Canada’s team for the world championship. Player evaluations will continue during the 2009-10 season, including the 2009 National Women’s Under-18 Championship, and a final roster will be named for the world championship in March.
The National Women’s Under-18 Team is a key component of Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence, which, along with the under-22 program, helps identify, evaluate and develop female hockey players for Canada’s National Women’s Team.
For more information on Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team, visit www.hockeycanada.ca.