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!

Provincial Athlete Feature: Introducing Tessa Johnston

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 want to locate Tessa Johnston on the field hockey pitch, it’s easy: all you have to do is find the most vocal player on the field. Whether she’s directing traffic in the defensive zone, discussing a play with an umpire or coach, or encouraging her teammates on a rush up the field, Johnston’s leadership qualities are ever-present both on and off the pitch.

Although she has been a forward for her entire field hockey career, Johnston’s Regional coach put her back on defence for this year’s Train 2 Compete Tournament. In this new role, she and Hannah Schoenroth, co-captains of the Northwest Sharks, worked together to manage the team’s play from the back end.

“I’m a really vocal player. I love communicating and talking to the players, so it’s nice seeing from the back now, because on forward you can’t really see much behind you,” explained Johnston. “If you ask any coach I’m very chatty, it comes naturally to me. Having a leadership role or not, I’m always vocal, always talking.”

While she loves to talk on the field, Johnston plays with a level of confidence and composure that speaks for itself. As a member of the U18 BC Girls Rams, this will be her fifth consecutive year playing on the BC Provincial Team. She has played for Team BC every year since she joined the Regional program in grade eight.

Johnston – back row sixth from right – with the 2017 U18 BC Girls Rams. The team earned a silver medal at the National Championships.

Johnston got involved in field hockey with the West Vancouver Field Hockey Club as a second sport to soccer. She has played soccer and basketball all through high school, but field hockey has been her top priority the whole way.

“I just like the fast play. I like how much running there is, I feel like sometimes in the other sports you’re not moving around as much,” Johnston said. “I also understand it really well. I have really good vision up the field, I think I get it a lot more than the other sports and all the girls are so friendly.”

Now in her grade 12 year, Johnston is deciding between the University of Victoria and the University of British Columbia to study and play field hockey next year. Both are eager to have her join their program and she is excited to have the opportunity to pursue her sport at the varsity level.

As one of the more experienced and well-known athletes in the Girls Train 2 Compete program, Johnston has come a long way since she first joined the program. She attributes much of this development to the older players and coaches in her Regional Programs throughout the years who have supported her and pushed her to improve, both as a player and as an individual.

“When I first started I was really nervous. I didn’t think I was a very good player, but being able to come out and have practice twice a week and constantly being with all these players who are older and better, I think that’s what made me a better player. I’m a very competitive person so it was that fight in me that made me want to be as good as them,” Johnston reflected. “Obviously the coaching is amazing; all of the coaches are so nice and fun. They have great drills, I love the drills that we do and everyone is so supportive. When we do fitness testing everyone is cheering each other on, it’s just a really fun and helpful environment.”

Johnston with the Northwest Sharks at the 2018 Train 2 Compete Regional Tournament.

Johnston truly values all of the help and support that she has received over the years from the older girls that she played with on her Regional and Provincial teams. Now in her final year with the program, she finds herself in the position where she can pass that experience and leadership down to the younger group coming up through the Train 2 Compete Program, which she plans to take full advantage of.

On a personal level, she is hungry to win a National Championship having come second many times but never first. Although beating Ontario is at the top of her priority list, Johnston is also keen to get to know some of the younger girls and help them develop the way others have helped her.

“We have a really strong grade 10 group. I think it’s going to be really good to bond with them and see how they play, maybe learn some stuff from them and share some experience with them,” said Johnston. “It would be really good to come first and just come together as a team. I think we have a good chance, we have a really strong group this year and I think we have a really good opportunity.”

Provincial Athlete Feature: Introducing Saneh Basra

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 got a chance to watch any of the Girls Train 2 Compete Regional Tournament last weekend, you probably noticed the Southeast Killer Whales sweeper, Saneh Basra. As a natural midfielder playing back on defence for the tournament, Basra’s powerful hits, exceptional ball control and bursts of speed up the field made her a stand out player in the tournament and a clear selection for the U18 BC Girls Rams.

Basra’s talent has not gone unnoticed this year, as the 16 year old Surrey native was selected to the Canadian Women’s U21 Junior Development Squad. She went on her first training tour with them in Chula Vista, California back in February.

“That was pretty exciting,” Basra recalled. “It showed me a new side of how intense it is; I’d never experienced something that intense. Just seeing the high level, it was a good experience.”

Basra – bottom right – with the Canadian Junior Development Squad on tour in Chula Vista, California. Photo by Field Hockey Canada.

Basra got involved in field hockey when her dad introduced her to the sport ten years ago. She’s played her club hockey with the Surrey Panthers ever since, and is currently in her third year playing with the Field Hockey BC Regional Program. She first joined the program in grade seven, but took a couple years off to focus on track.

Last year, she decided to make field hockey her priority, so she returned to the Regional Program and now uses track as cross-training to help with her fitness.  She’s been highly successful in the program ever since, as a part of the U18 BC Rams who won the silver medal at the 2017 National Championships.

“I’ve learned a lot of new things,” said Basra. “Practicing with my club, it was never that serious, but playing in the Regional program and the Provincial program, you have to be serious there and it’s a way to learn new skills with new coaches. It’s also a great way to talk to new people, I like that part.”

Basra – back row third from left – with her Train 2 Compete Regional team, the Southeast Killer Whales. The team placed fourth in the tournament. Photo by Alicia Pereira.

Currently in her grade 11 year, Basra hopes to study and play field hockey at the college level after graduation. She also has aspirations to make the Canadian National Team and play for Team Canada in the Olympics one day.

As a step in this direction, she has been invited by Team Canada’s head coach to attend a training camp with them this summer, which will be her first official camp with the Senior National Team. In the meantime, Basra is setting her focus on improving as a team and as a player with the Provincial Program.

“With the Provincial team I would like to come first, last year we came second so I would like to beat the Ontario team,” Basra explained. “I want to try new skills and just be more open and be more confident, last year I was a little nervous every time I played. This year I want to feel a little more comfortable, try being more aggressive and not shy out of whatever I try.”

With her skill set and determination, we can’t wait to follow Basra’s progress through this Provincial season and the years to come!