CALGARY, Canada – Hockey Canada announced its roster for the 2009 IIHF World Women’s Championship, which will be held April 4-12 in Hämeenlinna, Finland, and also named the additional four players who will be centralized in Calgary beginning in August. All of the centralized players have the chance to represent Canada at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver.
Canada’s world championship roster includes three goaltenders, six defencemen and 12 forwards, along with one alternate. 16 players on the roster competed at the 2008 IIHF World Women’s Championship in Harbin, China, helping Canada win a silver medal. Canada will attempt to win its 10th gold medal all-time at the IIHF World Women’s Championship since the event began in 1990. Canada has won nine of 11 world championships all-time.
Players and staff will depart Canada on March 24 for Helsinki, site of Canada’s pre-tournament camp. In addition to daily practices, Canada will play three pre-tournament games, facing local Midget AAA teams on March 28 and 29 and Finland on March 31.
Canada opens the 2009 IIHF World Women’s Championship on April 4 versus China, and will also take on Sweden on April 6 in preliminary round action. The 2009 IIHF World Women’s Championship includes three pools of three teams each, with the first-place team in each pool moving on to the medal round, which starts on April 8.
TSN and RDS, Hockey Canada’s official broadcasters, will televise games from Hämeenlinna on April 8, 10 and 12, including the gold medal game.
In August, 26 players will be in Calgary full-time in preparation for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The group of players will face off against Midget AAA teams throughout Alberta, along with taking part in a number of international competitions, including the 2009 Hockey Canada Cup in Vancouver in early September and the 2009 4 Nations Cup in Finland in early November.
Canada will need to trim its roster to 21 players in time for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games. The women’s hockey tournament opens in Vancouver on February 13, 2010.
Canada’s team for the 2009 World Women’s Championship
Goalkeepers: Shannon Szabados (Grant MacEwan, ACAC), Charline Labonté (McGill University, CIS), Kim St-Pierre (Montreal Stars, CWHL).
Defencemen: Carla MacLeod (Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL), Becky Kellar (Burlington Barracudas, CWHL), Colleen Sostorics (Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL), Gillian Ferrari (Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL), Catherine Ward (McGill University, CIS), Tessa Bonhomme (Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL).
Forwards: Meghan Agosta (Mercyhurst College, CHA), Rebecca Johnston (Cornell University, ECAC), Gillian Apps (Brampton Canadette-Thunder, CWHL), Meaghan Mikkelson (Edmonton Chimos, WWHL), Caroline Ouellette (Montreal Stars, CWHL), Jayna Hefford (Brampton Canadette-Thunder, CWHL), Jennifer Botterill (Mississauga Chiefs, CWHL), Haley Irwin (Univ. of Minnesota-Duluth, WCHA), Hayley Wickenheiser (Eskilstuna Linden, SWE Men Div. 3), Sarah Vaillancourt (Harvard University, ECAC), Gina Kingsbury (Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL), Marie-Philip Poulin (Dawson College, CEGEP). Alternate player: Jennifer Wakefield (University of New Hampshire, HE).
Additional Olympic candidates: Delaney Collins (D, Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL), Jocelyne Larocque (D, Univ. Of Minnesota-Duluth, WCHA), Brianne Jenner (FW, Mississauga Chiefs, CWHL), Cherie Piper (FW, Calgary Oval X-Treme, WWHL).