Players to compete for Canadian Development Team
The Dartmouth women’s ice hockey team is familiar with excellence. Eight Olympians — Sarah Tueting ’98 (USA), Sarah Parsons ’10 (USA), Gretchen Ulion ’94 (USA), Kristen King ’02 (USA), Katie Weathersten ’07 (CAN), Gillian Apps ’07 (CAN), Cherie Piper ’07 (CAN) and Rachel Rochat ’95 (SUI) — have skated for the Big Green in Thompson Arena and likewise for their respective countries in the Winter Olympics. Together, they have earned nine gold medals, one silver medal and two bronze medals.
Laura Stacey ’16,Emma Korbs ’17 and Hailey Noronha ’18 got a step closer to joining this list this week. The three players will compete in Canada’s National Women’s Development Team selection camp from Aug. 6 to 16, 2015 in Calgary, Alberta.
Stacey, Korbs and Noronha are among 43 other students invited back from the conditioning camp in May. The selection camp will be a week-long compilation of practices, intrasquad games, fitness testing and classroom sessions. At the end of the week, Melody Davidson, Hockey Canada’s general manager of national women’s team programs, will select a 23-player roster from the group to play in a series against the USA Women’s Under 22 Team in Lake Placid, NY from Aug. 20 to 22.
For Stacey, Korbs and Noronha, this week-long camp is not a new process. For two years Stacey — a Kleinburg, Ontario native — competed for Canada’s Under 18 team and then the two following years for the Under 22 team, winning a gold medal with Canada’s National Women’s Development Team at the 2015 Nations Cup in Füssen, Germany.
Stacey said she has been on the ice quite a bit this summer preparing. However, despite years of experience with selection camps, Stacey said that the process is “still nerve-racking”.
“There’s still nerves because you’ve worked and trained all summer, and you really want it to show in your results during camp,” Stacey said. “But after the fitness testing, it’s all hockey and that’s when the fun begins.”
Stacey said that Korbs and Noronha’s presence will positively add to the experience.
“It will be great to have other Dartmouth girls on the ice and we’ll have a lot of fun,”Stacey said.
Holley Tyng, associate head coach for the Big Green, said that Stacey,Korbs and No-ronha will each bring her own unique strengths and skills to the selection camp.
Stacey’s power is her biggest strength, Tyng said. She has “the strength and the speed to be an impact player at whichever level she plays” and has a “powerful slap-shot” to her advantage.
Noronha — hailing from Newmarket, Ontario — competed for the Under 18 team in the IHF World Champions in Budapest, Hungary. This is her first time trying out for the Under 22 team.
“It is a huge honor to not just have the chance to represent Dartmouth but also your country,” Noronha said. “This summer I have worked harder than ever before, and, no matter what, this opportunity is only going to make us better players.”
As a defenseman, Noronha will bring her “hockey smarts” to the camp as she has a “good vision for the game” due to her natural hockey sense, Tyng said. She added that Noronha is a “threat during a power play.”
Korbs — a Toronto, Ontario native — attended two Under 18 camps, making the 23-player series team in August of 2012, but was released before making the world championship roster. Like Noronha, this too will be her first time trying out for the Under 22 team.
Korbs’ biggest strength is her “work ethic, fitness and commitment to being the best athlete she can be,” Tyng said. She noted that Korbs, a recognized leader on the Dartmouth team, is “physically at the top of her game.” Kyng said that Korbs’ skating skills as a “model for good skating” will work to her advantage.
Following the series against the United States, Hockey Canada scouts and the team’s coaching staff, will continue to evaluate players with their club teams during the 2015-16 season. They will use this tracking when selecting the Canadian team that will compete at the 2016 Nations Cup in Germany next January, as well as possible invites to camps and events with Canada’s National Women’s Team.