Hockey Manitoba is excited to announce the group of coaches who will be leading the 2023 Female U16 Program of Excellence. This year’s program will be led by Megan Robertson (Westman), Jordyn Zacharias (Winnipeg), Kelsey McHolm (Winnipeg), Autumn Garnham (Central Plains) and Brooke Anderson (Winnipeg).
The Female U16 Program of Excellence has been redesigned as a development focused program for Female Under-16 athletes in Manitoba. The goal of the program is to teach our up-and-coming female athletes the skills, concepts and tactics specific to the Female U18 Program of Excellence, ensuring that these athletes are given the proper development time in order to move to the U18 level and beyond.
Megan Robertson is an alumni of the U18 AAA Westman Wildcats program and former assistant captain of the Augsburg University Auggies (NCAA DIII). Megan spent three years as an assistant coach of the U18 AAA Westman Wildcats and has been involved in the Female Prospects programing in Westman South for multiple years.
Jordyn Zacharias is an alumni of the Female U18 Program of Excellence, having played with Team Manitoba at the 2015 Canada Winter Games in Prince George, BC. Jordyn went on to play at the University of Connecticut before spending four years as a member of the University of Manitoba Bisons where she won a USport National Championship in 2018. Jordyn is in her second year as an assistant coach with the U of M Bisons women’s hockey team and has also spent time as a coach at the U13 level as well as a skills coach.
Kelsey McHolm comes to the U16 program after completing her final year as a player with the University of York Lions where she was the captain this past season. In addition to being a USport athlete, Kelsey was the head coach of the North York Storm of the Ontario U22 league. Kelsey’s previous experience has included U18 AAA, U13 and time as a skills coach in Ontario. Kelsey is an alumni of the U18 AAA Winnipeg Avros program where she played for two seasons.
Autumn Garnham joins the staff after having spent this past season as an assistant coach with the Central Plains Capitals of the U15 AAA Manitoba Female Hockey League. Autumn played her U18 years between Balmoral Hall and the Central Plains Capitals before joining the University of Toronto where she played three seasons. Autumn has spent time coaching in both the Female Prospects and Directors Cup Prospects programs.
Rounding out the staff is Brooke Anderson, who is an alumni of the U18 AAA Winnipeg Avros as well as a former Team Manitoba athlete who participated in the U18 Women’s National Championship in 2016. Following her U18 years, Brooke was a member of the York University Lions where she just finished the last of her 5-seasons. Brooke also spent this past season as an assistant coach with the North York Storm of the Ontario U22 league and was a bench coach at the U18 Top-68 Camp in 2022.
All five coaches are entering into their first experience with the Female U16 Program of Excellence in and we are very excited to have this talented group of coaches leading our U16 athletes through the Evaluation Tournament March 31 – April 2 and into the summer camps in June, July and August of 2023.
Hockey Manitoba is pleased to recognize CCM Hockey and the Western Hockey League as Official Partners of the Program of Excellence, along with Gatorade as the Official Sport Drink of Hockey Manitoba. The POE is our high performance program that offers developing athletes who are on track to be elite with the opportunity to represent their province while providing a solid development path to the National and International stages.
For more information about the Hockey Manitoba Program of Excellence please visit www.hockeymanitoba.ca/programs/poe/.