By Carter Brooks
Photo by Jeff Miller
The 2019 FISU Winter Universiade is fully underway, as the games opened from Krasnoyarsk, Russia on Friday.
Canada sent both a male and female ice hockey squad, comprised of students attending post secondary and playing within U-Sports Canada. The games run from the second to 12th of March, while the two Canadian teams are made up of three FISU Winter Universiade veterans, while seven players have skated as U-Sports all-stars in the past.
The men's competition will feature a 12-team round robin, followed by a quarterfinal, semifinal and final matchup. While the women's side of things sees six teams battling it out for a gold, silver and bronze ranking. In 2017, the men's squad picked up a bronze medal, while the women took home silver.
Two Manitobans are featured on the men's team (Nick Zajac, Headingley, and Adam Henry, Winnipeg, of the University of Manitoba Bisons), while the Bisons' female team is heading to Nationals, so no representatives were sent to Russia for the women. Former Bisons netminder Jessica Vance of Saskatchewan is one of the female goaltenders on the women's team.
The Canadian U-Sports men won their first game over the United Kingdom with a 12-0 thrashing on Saturday, while the women picked up a 10-0 victory over China to open their tournament Friday, before handing Team Japan a 4-0 loss Saturday. The men take on Latvia on Monday in their next matchup of the tournament, while the women's team goes to battle with the United States, also on Monday.