Meet the Athletes: Team BC U18 Girls

The Provincial Pathway Series

The Provincial Pathway is a series which will follow a select number of FHBC athletes on their journey from the Regional Program through to the National Championships.

In this edition of the Provincial Pathway series, we introduce the U18 Girls BC teams and catch up with Tessa Johnston and Saneh Basra of the U18 Girls BC Rams.

Johnston and Basra discuss their progress in training thus far, the dynamic between coaches and players, their experience with the Provincial program and their objectives leading into Nationals. Click the video link to find out more!

For a full introduction to the U18 Girls BC teams click on the links below:

U18 Girls BC Rams

U18 Girls BC Stags

U18 Girls BC Lions

Meet the Athletes: Team BC U18 Boys

The Provincial Pathway Series

The Provincial Pathway is a series which will follow a select number of FHBC athletes on their journey from the Regional Program through to the National Championships.

In this edition of the Provincial Pathway, Field Hockey BC had the opportunity to catch up with Rowan Childs and Gary Mann to discuss their Provincial training with the U18 BC Boys Rams.

After a few weeks of training with the BC Rams, Childs and Mann describe their progress with the team, the structure of their training and their own personal experiences with the Field Hockey BC Provincial program. Click the video to learn more about these athletes on the road to Nationals!

For a complete introduction to the U18 BC Boys teams including rosters and athlete bios, click on the links below:

U18 Boys BC Rams

U18 Boys BC Lions

Club Championships: Week 3

Field Hockey BC is coming up on our third and final weekend of Club Championships, with the U18 Boys and the U15 Girls rounding out the action this weekend!

The U18 Boys Club Championships will be taking place at the Cowichan Sportsplex in Duncan, BC on June 16-17. We are excited to announce that live updates will be available all tournament long at https://fieldhockeybc.altiusrt.com/. Schedules, rules and field locations can be found here.

The U15 Girls tournament is being held in Chilliwack, BC on June 16-17.  The games will be split between two locations, Townsend Park and Chilliwack Secondary School. For schedules, rules and field locations, click here.

Field Hockey BC would like to extend a huge thank you to all of our hosting clubs:

– Chilliwack FHC (U15 Girls)
– Vancouver Hawks FHC (U15 Boys)
– West Vancouver FHC (U18 Girls)
– Richmond FHC (U13 Girls and Boys)

These events would not be possible without the support of you and your volunteers. We would also like to thank all participating players, coaches and umpires for your hard work and dedication to our great sport.

Good luck to all teams competing this weekend!

Vancouver International Tournament Recap

It was a great long weekend of hockey out at the Vancouver International Tournament May 19-21 at Burnaby Lake Sports Complex. Over the three day long weekend, we saw 22 teams across three divisions in action, with an age range over 5 decades! Field Hockey BC was thrilled to see such a fun and diverse group out playing the game and enjoying the atmosphere at the adult social event of the season.

We would like to extend our congratulations to the winning teams in all divisions:

Women’s Social Division

  1. Wildcats
  2. Storm
  3. Tri-City Eagles

Island Wildcats, Women’s Social winners

Mixed Social Division 

  1. Seattle Mixed
  2. Bored of Governors
  3. Okanagan

Seattle Mixed, Mixed Social winners

Women’s Masters Division

  1. CDN Masters
  2. Fossilizing Sharks
  3. Seattle Masters

CDN Masters, Women’s Masters winners

Spirit of Judy Broom Sportsmanship Award: Vancouver Hawks

Vancouver Hawks, Judy Broom Award winners

Thank you to all players, umpires and staff for making this event a resounding success. We can’t wait to see you all back out next year!

 

Vancouver International Tournament

The social event of the season starts tomorrow! We can’t wait for a fun, sunny weekend of hockey at the Vancouver International Tournament.

The event will take place May 19-21 at Burnaby Lake Sports Complex. Join us at the Vancouver Rowing Club at 6:30 tonight for the Friday Night Social! Refreshments will be provided as well as a free beer jug for each team.

We hope to see you all there!

Provincial Athlete Feature: Train 2 Train Girls

The Provincial Pathway: Introducing Savina Purewal and Laine Delmotte

The Provincial Pathway is a series which will follow a select number of FHBC athletes on their journey from the Regional Program through to the National Championships.

The Team BC U15 Girls Rams are lucky to have two exceptionally talented midfielders in Savina Purewal and Laine Delmotte.

Savina Purewal

There’s no stopping Savina Purewal once she gets her momentum going. Playing from either the center or outside midfield position, the speedy Surrey native dominated with the Southeast Jaguars at the Train 2 Train Festival, earning a spot on the U15 BC Girls Rams.

Purewal, who has played field hockey since she was five years old with the Surrey Sharks and India Club, is going to her second National Championship this year in her fifth year with the Regional Program, starting at the Learn 2 Train level back in grade 4. She is also a gifted soccer player, but has always seen field hockey as her number one.

“I feel like I’ve always had more passion for the game,” Purewal explained. “Field hockey just gives me this awesome adrenaline rush and it makes me feel really good.”

Savina Purewal – left – in action against the Pink Panthers at the 2018 Train 2 Train Festival.

Between the long hours of training, Purewal still manages to get out in the community about once a week and volunteer with her leadership class at school and with the City of Surrey. Despite her busy schedule, the 14 year-old is always out there working hard with her sights set on playing in the Olympics one day.

“I think my main motivation is that I want to represent my country, I want to represent my family, my friends and everyone who’s supported me,” said Purewal. “I just really want to continue playing on that path and maybe play for Team Canada and go to the Olympics, that’s my motivation is to one day be standing up on the Olympic podium with a medal.”

As a young athlete with big aspirations, Purewal is doing all the right things to achieve her goals in the early stages of her career. After winning the gold medal with the U15 BC Girls Rams last year, she was selected to attend the U15 National Junior Development Squad Camp, which she hopes to be invited to again this year.

“I learned so much. Steph Andrews, the National Team coach was a really good coach and all of the girls were good, it just showed me once you’re at that high level you have to always be on. Once you’re at the top it’s hard, it’s really competitive because everyone is good. Everyone is at that same level.”

Although she’s already had exposure to the National Program at a young age, Purewal remains focused on the process, starting from the Regional Program and working through to the Provincial level. She recognized the Train 2 Train Festival as her primary focus because to her, it is the first and most essential step in moving on to the next level.

Savina Purewal – front row second from the right – with the Southeast Jaguars at the 2018 Train 2 Train Festival.

Between this Provincial season and the coming years, Purewal has a vision for what it will take to reach that next level and to continue her development as a player and a leader.

“This year [Nationals] would be in Toronto and I think that would be an awesome experience, but I also want to step up and be a captain and take initiative because I’ve experienced it last year as well,” stated Purewal. “Next year I want to do Train 2 Compete for the three years and I want to keep making the Provincial team because that one pathway is really important. Making the provincial team and then showing well at Nationals is really important for getting invited to the actual Junior Development Squad and then working up from there.”

Laine Delmotte

The composure and ball control of the North Shore Acaemy Dragons’ Laine Delmotte was unmatched at the Train 2 Train Festival. In her second year training at the North Vancouver Academy, she will be attending her second National Championships this year with the U15 Girls Rams.

“It was really exciting and fun,” said Delmotte of her first National Championship Festival. “I was kind of nervous at first, but I really enjoyed it because I had a few friends from the start which helped me make more friends.”

Delmotte comes from a family full of field hockey players. She started playing for the West Vancouver Field Hockey Club she was six years old because her older sister and older cousin were involved in the sport.

Laine Delmotte – right – at the 2018 Train 2 Train Festival in action against the Polar Bears. Photo: Chris Wilson

After spending a year in the Regional Program when she was in grade 7, Delmotte joined the Academy the following year when she started high school. The Academy players train every other school day as a replacement for their Physical Education class.

“When I did the Regional Program I didn’t have many friends because I was in grade 7 so Academy is nice and it’s more training as well,” explained Delmotte. “With the Regionals I had more conflicts because Academy is during the day.”

Also a high level soccer player, Delmotte keeps busy with her sports, but sees field hockey as her number one sport. In the long term, she intends to pursue field hockey and hopes to get a scholarship to play in University.

The center midfielder, who narrowly missed a medal at the 2017 Nationals with the BC Girls White Lions, is excited for the upcoming Provincial season, especially having the opportunity to travel with her team for Nationals this year.

Laine Delmotte – back row fifth from the right – with the Academy Dragons at the 2018 Train 2 Train Festival.

“I’m looking forward to the weekends of training, they’re just fun and I like how they’re long training sessions. I’m looking forward to traveling a bit and bonding with the team more, because last year we couldn’t have a hotel or anything.”

The skill and maturity of these two athletes is sure to make them players to watch through this year’s Provincial season. Make sure to follow their progress leading into July’s National Championship Festival in Toronto, Ontario!

Provincial Athlete Feature: Train 2 Train Boys

The Provincial Pathway: Introducing Calder Wheatley and Jagjot Hayer

The Provincial Pathway is a series which will follow a select number of FHBC athletes on their journey from the Regional Program through to the National Championships.

A strong and steady defender and an explosive attacking midfielder, Calder Wheatley and Jagjot Hayer are both athletes to watch on the U15 Boys Provincial Teams.

Calder Wheatley

Calder Wheatley protected the Eagles defensive zone with speed, skill and composure at the Train 2 Train Festival, earning himself a spot on the U15 BC Boys Lions. Field hockey is a family affair for the 15 year-old Victoria native, as both of his parents and his younger brother also play, often as teammates.

Without a U15 Boys Spring League in Victoria, Calder now plays on his dad’s men’s league team, the Victoria Rebels. Additionally, Calder and his 11 year-old brother Benjamin played on the same team for the first time at the Regional Festival this past weekend, with Benjamin competing in his first Regional tournament.

“My whole family plays, my mom and my dad,” Wheatley explained. “When I was young I would go out to the field and watch them play. My parents are good field hockey players so that’s really my motivation, to be able to play like them.”

Calder Wheatley in action at the 2018 Train 2 Train Regional Festival.

This Provincial season will be Wheatley’s second year playing for Team BC, after competing at the National Championship with the U15 Boys Lions last July. In his third year with the Regional Program, he has the added challenge of playing out of Victoria, where the boys field hockey community is significantly smaller than is it on the Lower Mainland.

The Boys Regional Program on the island was bigger than it had been in past years, as the U15 and U18 boys all played together and they also accepted younger players to participate, including Calder’s 11 year-old brother Benjamin. However, the small group of Vancouver Island boys have the obstacle of coming over and playing with boys who have been training together all season in their Regional Program.

Calder Wheatley – back row second from the left – with his Train 2 Train Regional Team, the Eagles.

“It’s different for us. It would be a lot more difficult if it was only one person coming over, but there’s always been three or four,” Wheatley said of coming over for the Regional Festival. “It’s challenging, but it makes us better.”

With the upcoming National Championship Festival taking place in Ontario this year, Wheatley is excited to travel with the team and have more of a bonding experience than at last year’s National Championship which was local for most of the Team BC athletes.

“I think travelling with the team will be a good bonding experience, because last year coming here we weren’t staying in the same hotels, we were kind of separate. This time we will all be together, so I think we will bond more as a team.”

Jagjot Hayer

Jagjot Hayer was an offensive standout for the Raptors at the Train 2 Train Festival, with his playmaking from the center midfield and his explosive runs down the side. Hayer describes himself as a player who likes to make runs and beat several defenders, but also make good plays to his teammates.

“If I tackle the ball from someone and I see three or four people in front of me I might try to beat them, but if there’s a two on one or something I’ll usually pass it off,” Hayer explained.

The Surrey native started playing field hockey at six years old and he saw his cousins playing. With his club, the Surrey Panthers, he plays with both his own age group and the U18 boys for more training and extra competition.

Jagjot Hayer at the 2018 Train 2 Train Festival. Photo: Chris Wilson

Hayer has been playing with the older boys for a few years now, which is how he got involved with the Regional Program. When he heard his older teammates talking about their participation in the Regional Festival, he decided to give it a try.

“It really developed me as a player, especially as a pass-first type of player,” Hayer said of the Regional Program. “Before I used to stick my head down and try beating everyone, now I look up to the field and try looking for the first pass. I’ve met a lot of new people, a lot of good coaches and a lot of good young players.”

Jagjot Hayer – back row fourth from the right – with the Raptors at the 2018 Train 2 Train Festival.

In his third year with the Regional Program, this will be Hayer’s second trip to the National Championships playing with the U15 BC Boys Rams. His team last year came in first place at Nationals, defeating Ontario in the Championship game.

In his final year playing with the U15 age group, Hayer’s goal is to lead his team to another National Championship gold medal, while taking a leadership role and making the players around him better. In the long term, he hopes to play for Team Canada one day.

We are excited to follow both Wheatley and Hayer through the Provincial season as they work towards bringing home a second consecutive gold medal for the U15 Boys!

Weekend Preview: Train 2 Train Festival

Field Hockey BC is excited to host our second Regional Event of the season, the U15 Train 2 Train Festival, from May 4-6 at Tamanawis Park, Surrey. This festival consists of three boys teams and nine girls teams between the ages of 12 and 15 from all over British Columbia.

Over the past several months, these athletes have been working hard within their respective Regional Programs in preparation for this event, which will ultimately decide who is selected to represent Team BC at the National Championship Festival in July 2018. Both the boys and girls will play a round robin format, with the boys teams’ playing four games each over two days and the girls teams’ playing six games over three days.

Want to keep up with the action? Live scoring and updates can be found all weekend at https://fieldhockeybc.altiusrt.com/. You can also find updates, photos and more festival content by following Field Hockey BC on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

We hope to see you supporting our U15 Regional athletes this weekend at Tamanawis Park!

 

Provincial Athlete Feature: Introducing Rowan Childs

The Provincial Pathway Series

The Provincial Pathway is a series which will follow a select number of FHBC athletes on their journey from the Regional Program through to the National Championships.

If you like a good underdog story, look no further than the U18 BC Boys Rams midfielder, Rowan Childs.

The 18 year-old Tsawwassen native started playing field hockey with the Delta Falcons at six years old when his dad and his uncle introduced him to the sport. Since the Falcons men’s program disbanded, he has played his club hockey with Burnaby Lake and Surinder Lions.

At his first Regional Trial when he was in grade 7, he wasn’t selected to participate in the Regional Program. The following year, after qualifying for the Regional Program, he was placed on the reserve list for Team BC after the Regional Tournament.

“The second year I didn’t make the BC team, I was put onto reserves, which was heartbreaking,” said Childs. “It’s a big piece of motivation for me, that failure really motivated me to succeed the next time and continue improving.”

On his third attempt, he was selected to play on the Provincial Team, and has played for Team BC every year since. Less than three years after being left off of the U15 Provincial Team, Childs was the youngest player named to Team Canada for the 2016 Junior World Cup, at just 16 years old.

“The Junior World Cup was my first ever tour with the Junior National Team, that was pretty incredible,” reflected Childs. “We didn’t do very well there, it was rough performance-wise but I think it was a really good learning experience for me to see what the best players under 21 in Canada can do and really model my game after a few players there.”

Childs – fourth from left – with the Canadian Junior National Team at the 2016 Junior World Cup in India. Photo by Field Hockey Canada.

He is recently coming off of a third place finish with the U18 Canadian National Team at the Youth Pan American Games, which qualified Canada for the Youth Olympics in October 2018. Childs tied with two of his teammates as the leading goal scorer for Team Canada at the Youth Pan Am Games, with five goals in six games.

This summer, he will take part in his fourth and final National Championships Festival. As an athlete who has competed at the Regional, Provincial and National level, he reflects on the Regional Program as a challenging yet worthwhile experience.

“It’s a ton of fun,” said Childs. “BC does a great job putting in the work. We’re always out training; a few years ago we’d be out Friday night and Saturday morning. Those were deadly hours but it really pays off when you’re coming here and playing four games in three days. It’s a lot of work, but it pays off.”

Despite suffering an injury late in the weekend and missing his final game, Childs had a commanding presence as the captain of the Owls, often found managing the play around him from the center midfield position. He describes himself as a dynamic and coachable player, always working on his technical skills and making the little adjustments to improve his game.

Childs – seventh from the right – with the Owls, the bronze medallists at the 2018 Train 2 Compete Regional Tournament.

In his final year in the Provincial Program, Childs is hoping to capture that elusive gold medal at the National Championships that he has yet to achieve in three previous years. After graduation, he hopes to play for the UBC club team and continue his development with the Junior National Team in an effort to one day play for Team Canada at the Olympics.

“That’s been my goal ever since I was a kid,” Childs explained. “I loved watching the Olympics and watching people step on the podium. That’s always been my goal, to win an Olympic medal so I think that’s where the main inspiration comes from to go through all of this.”

While the Olympic dream has been a huge driving factor in his field hockey career, Childs has not lost sight of the steps along the way that have made him the athlete he is today. He continues to value the challenges and failures he has endured and uses them as motivation to keep improving. When asked about the highlights in his field hockey career, after listing his Junior National experience, he said:

“This is honestly my favourite one. After that year of not making Team BC, failing to make that year, being able to make Team BC that next year after experiencing that failure, I think that’s been my biggest accomplishment.”

With maturity and experience beyond his years, we are excited to follow Childs’ journey on the road to his last National Championships and beyond.

Provincial Athlete Feature: Introducing Gary Mann

The Provincial Pathway Series

The Provincial Pathway is a series which will follow a select number of FHBC athletes on their journey from the Regional Program through to the National Championships.

When Gary Mann was six years old, he saw some kids playing field hockey at Tamanawis Park and thought he would give it a try. The sport has since become his lifelong passion.

“I live right [by Tamanawis], so I’d come here with my parents all the time and I’d just look around and see what’s going on. One time I saw a couple kids my age playing field hockey and I figured why not try seeing what this is,” recalled Mann. “As soon as I started playing I just fell in love with the sport and it’s been like that ever since.”

Gary’s friends, some of which he’s played with since his very first junior team at the Surinder Lions club, tell him he plays like a gazelle, with his long legs and swift stride. After helping the Condors to victory at the Train 2 Compete Regional Tournament, the 17 year-old sweeper has been selected to the U18 BC Boys Rams to play in his fifth and final National Championship this July.

Mann – back row fourth from the right – with the U18 Condors after winning the gold medal at the 2018 Train 2 Compete Regional Tournament.

With several years of experience in the Field Hockey BC Train 2 Train and Train 2 Compete Regional programs, Mann has found this to be an important step in developing a fundamental skill set to make it to the next level.

“In the Regional Program you’re learning how to play and develop as a player, and then while you’re in the Provincial Program the intensity rises because you’re trying to build as a team and as a player,” explained Mann. “From the Regional Tournament to Nationals the whole outlay of training changes. [The Regional Program] is almost easing you into the Provincial Program.”

After four years of training at the Regional and Provincial level, Mann went on his first official training tour with the Canadian Junior Development Squad in the Netherlands last month. This U21 squad played Junior National teams from around the world and won the tournament with a 4-1 victory over South Africa in the final. Not only was this huge for his development as a player, he also described it as a significant personal learning experience.

“In Amsterdam we all stayed in this house, it wasn’t that big it was just three rooms for 20 athletes. It was so different living in such a compact place, you’re sharing bunk beds in a tiny room. I learned a lot, like how to manage my studies and field hockey.”

Mann – back row second from the right – with the Canadian Junior Development Squad in the Netherlands.

Following his upcoming graduation, Mann intends to continue his field hockey career and train with the National Team while attending University to study Sciences, likely at the University of British Columbia or Simon Fraser University. As far as his fifth and final Provincial season goes, he made his intentions very clear.

When asked about his goals for the Provincial season, Mann said: “Beating Ontario. We’ve lost to them four times in a row and I’m actually sick of it. I’ve got to beat them this year, I’m not kidding. This is our year, this is our last chance to win playing for Team BC.”

With that kind of commitment, we can’t wait to see what this year’s U18 BC Boys Rams can accomplish!