By Carter Brooks
Photo courtesy of Hockey Canada
Five of the very best female hockey players from Manitoba have packed their bags and have boarded flights to Dawson Creek, B.C. for Hockey Canada's Fall Festival.
The annual assembly runs this year from September 8th to 16th at the Encana Events Centre. 59 total Team Canada invitees will be led by former Olympic hockey coaches Perry Pearn (Alberta) and Troy Ryan (Nova Scotia), who will split the hopefuls into two teams (Team Red and Team White).
With practices running all day Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday next week, games will not begin until Thursday evening. Team Red and Team White will face off against one another twice, while also taking on two local teams, Fort St. John Huskies and the Dawson Creek Canucks. Games are held Thursday and Friday evenings, Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning.
17 of the 23 Team Canada members from the 2018 silver medal-winning Olympic team will be in attendance at the Fall Festival, including Manitobans Bailey Bram (Ste. Anne), Jocelyne Larocque (Ste. Anne) and Brigette Lacquette (Mallard). Also joining them will be fellow Manitobans Kati Tabin (Winnipeg) and Halli Krzyzaniak (Neepawa).
The 2018-19 season for the Canadian National Women's Team will see matchups against the USA, Finland and Sweden in Saskatoon, SK. at the 4 Nations Cup in November, and will be highlighted by the 2019 IIHF World Women's Championship in Finland in April. The practice/training events held in Dawson Creek are open to the public and free of charge. Tickets to the games at the Fall Festival are available for purchase online.