North Female Hockey Program returning for fourth year

Daily Herald File Photo Former Olympic gold medalist Sami Jo Small instructed players during last year’s North Female Hockey Program at the Art Hauser Centre.

As the North Female Hockey Program prepares to host their fourth summer camp on Aug. 20-22 at the Art Hauser Centre, director Al Dyer is impressed with how much the program has grown since it started in 2015.

“I think it’s been a satisfying experience for all of us that are involved behind the scenes to see how it’s developed, and how the female hockey players want to give back and teach others about their experiences as they become coaches and instructors,” Dyer said.

“Those that have been here are such positive for the young female hockey players here in Northern Saskatchewan, and I know from talking to many of them that they are happy that something like this is available now, as it wasn’t back when they were first playing.”

This year’s camp, which is for players that will be suiting up from the novice to midget levels, will feature two Olympians as guest instructors.

Carla MacLeod won gold medals with Canada at the 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympic Games and now serves as a head coach for the female prep team at the Edge School for Athletes outside of Calgary.

Also attending is Saskatoon’s Emily Clark, who won a silver medal for Canada at the 2018 Winter Olympics and is gearing up for jer senior season with the NCAA’s Wisconsin Badgers.

Former Saskatchewan Huskies head coach Robin Ulrich, Notre Dame Midget Hounds head coach Tegan Schroeder and Prince Albert Northern Bears alumni Jessica Vance, Morgan Willoughby and Brooke Hobson will also serve as instructors.

“It’s nice to have them all coming, but it’s especially great to have the former Bears players joining us as they all have gone through the local minor hockey system and are close in age to those who will be at the camp,” Dyer said.

“This isn’t just a camp for high-end players. We have girls of all abilities that have come here and we want to make sure that everyone has fun both on and off the ice.”

Those taking part in the camp will be involved in two on-ice sessions each day and will also be involved in off-ice activities that include dryland training, proper nutrition, yoga and injury treatment and prevention.

Registration for the camp, which is limited to 90 participants to keep the coach to student ratio low, is ongoing and can be done online at www.northfemalehockeyprogram.com

“In previous years, we’ve been able to have a few players join at the last minute as we’ve had the space,” Dyer said.

“However, the number that have signed up already is up compared to the last three camps, so I’d recommend signing up now.”