Canada West hockey star Hayley Wickenheiser to carry Canada’s Olympic flag


January 23, 2014, EDMONTON (ISN) – Canadian hockey legend and Canada West Universities Athletic Association superstar Hayley Wickenheiser has been selected to carry Canada’s flag into Fisht Olympic Stadium in Sochi, Russia on Friday, February 7th.

The XXII Olympic Winter Games run February 6-23, with 98 events and thousands of competitors from around the world.

Sochi will mark the Wickenheiser’s fifth Olympics with Canada, which will shoot for a fourth consecutive women’s hockey gold medal when the puck drops at Bolshoy Ice Dome. She is Canada’s all-time leader in goals, assists, points, games played and medals won, dating back to her very first international event in 1987. Twice she has been named Olympic tournament MVP.

Wickenheiser, a Kinesiology student at the University of Calgary, has won two Canada West Player of the Year awards and is a three-time Canadian Interuniversity Sport All-Canadian. She led the Dinos to their first CIS and Canada West conference championship in 2012 and helped the Dinos get back to Nationals again in 2013. On two occasions – 2010-11 and 2011-12 – Wickenheiser was a CIS Top 8 Academic award recipient.

A native of Shaunavon, Sask., is now 35 and still eligible to return to the Dinos next season. Wickenheiser has a long history of notable accomplishments, including January 2003 when she was the first women’s player to play pro hockey, for a men’s team in Finland. She has also participated in both summer and winter Olympics, joining Canada’s softball entry at the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney, Australia.

Her most memorable moment on home soil came on February 25, 2010 at Canada Hockey Place in Vancouver, where Wickenheiser and Team Canada were inspired by hometown fans to claim Olympic gold over their biggest rival, Team USA.

In Canada West, despite playing only 50 of 76 regular season games over three seasons, Wickenheiser scored 50 times and recorded 115 points, ranking her just outside the top 10 in Canada West history on both lists. As a team, the Dinos won 60 regular season games, 12 of 18 post-season contests and two CIS medals over her three years (2010-13), including a CIS silver medal in 2013.

Without a doubt, Hayley Wickenheiser is the most recognizable student-athlete ever to compete in Canada West and, in Sochi, she will once again be front and centre, representing Canada before millions of people on the worldwide stage.

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