by Kristen Lipscombe
March 22, 2014, BUDAPEST, Hungary (ISN) – The puck is about to drop on the 2014 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship in Budapest, Hungary, with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team playing its opening game against Japan at 6 p.m. local time/1 p.m. ET on Sunday, March 23.
The tournament culminates with the gold medal game at 6:30 p.m. local time/12:30 p.m. ET Sunday, March 30 at the Budapest Ice Center.
In pre-tournament action Sunday, March 16 at the MasterCard Centre in Etobicoke, Ont., the Canadians defeated Queen’s University of Canadian Interuniversity Sport 5-1, and after travelling overseas, beat the Hungary Selects women’s team 4-1 on Friday, March 21 at the Budapest Ice Center.
Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team head coach Laura Schuler (Scarborough, Ont./University of Minnesota Duluth, WCHA) and assistant coaches Dwayne Gylywoychuk (Winnipeg, Man./Hockey Canada) and Cassandra Turner (Campbellford, Ont./Quinnipiac University, ECAC), have named Lauren Wildfang (Waterdown, Ont./Toronto, CWHL) team captain, while Karly Heffernan (Sherwood Park, Alta./Pursuit of Excellence, Midget AAA), Alexandra Labelle (St-Louis-de-Gonzague, Que./St-Laurent, CEGEP) and Hannah Miller (Vancouver, B.C./Okanagan Hockey Academy, JWHL) will serve as alternate captains at this year’s world championship.
Heffernan and Miller both won the gold medal at the 2013 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship in Heinola and Vierumäki, Finland, last January.
Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team features 22 players, including two goaltenders, seven defencemen and 13 forwards. Twenty-one players were members of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team for a three-game series against the U.S. Women’s Under-18 Team in Lake Placid, N.Y., last August, winning two of those games. Samantha Cogan (Ottawa, Ont./Nepean, PWHL) is the lone player making her Team Canada debut at the world championship
Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team, broken down by province:
- Ontario – 10 (Bach, Cogan, Leslie, MacMillan, Noronha, Pinkney, Sauvé, Tiley, Wildfang and Wilson-Bennett)
- British Columbia – six (Bellerive, Hart, Fieseler, Miller, Potomak and Spring)
- Quebec – four (Labelle, Lalancette, Picard and Stacey)
- Alberta – two (Healey and Heffernan)
Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team also features:
nine players who won the gold medal with Ontario Red at the 2013 National Women’s Under-18 Championship in Calgary, Alta. (Bach, Cogan, Pinkney, Leslie, MacMillan, Noronha, Sauvé, Wildfang and Wilson-Bennett);
- four players who won the gold medal with Ontario Blue at the 2012 National Women’s Under-18 Championship in Dawson Creek, B.C. (Bach, Leslie, MacMillan and Noronha);
- two players who participated in the 2013 IIHF Women’s High Performance Camp in Sheffield, England, last July (Hart and Potomak);
- two players who won the gold medal with Canada’s National Women’s Under-18-Team at the 2013 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship in Heinola and Vierumäki, Finland (Heffernan and Miller);
- one player who won the gold medal with LHFDQ Nord at the 2013 Esso Cup, Canada’s National Female Midget Championship, in Burnaby, B.C. (Picard).
In preliminary round action at the 2014 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship, Canada also plays Finland on Monday, March 24 and the Czech Republic at on Wednesday, March 26. Quarter-finals are scheduled for Thursday, March 27 and semifinals are set for Saturday, March 29, all at the Budapest Ice Center.
The Hungarian Ice Hockey Federation will be streaming tournament games on its YouTube channel. Please CLICK HERE to access.
For more information on Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team and the 2014 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 Women’s World Championship, please visit www.hockeycanada.ca or follow along via social media at www.facebook.com/hockeycanada, www.twitter.com/hockeycanada and www.twitter.com/hc_women.