If anyone would care to see me in a wide variety of attitudes of sheer horror, trick me into attending a girl's ice hockey game.Women's hockey has sure come a long way. Overcoming the male-dominated sporting society was amongst the biggest obstacles.
I wouldn't go willingly, any more than I would go willingly to watch lions eat Christians. In fact, wild horses couldn't drag me. The last time wild horses tried to drag me to a girls' hockey game I dragged them in the opposite direction with such violence that their braced forelegs became badly worn down, and they had to give up wild-horsing and take jobs as kangaroos.
Women's hockey will be one of the most anticipated events in the upcoming 2010 Olympic games. It will be the fourth Olympic tournament for the ladies. The Americans won in 1998, with the Canadians winning the last two.
Canada announced a big step in defending their Olympic title on Tuesday. Hockey Canada announced the female roster Canada will take to the 2009 IIHF World Championships coming up in April.
The 20 players announced yesterday, as well as six others, will all be invited to a month long Olympic training camp in Calgary after the Worlds. From this group the Canadian Olympic team will be announced.
It should be noted that two Canadian veterans have effectively been cut from the Olympic team. Missing from the roster and reserve list are forward Katie Weatherston and defenceman Cheryl Pounder, pictured, both members of the 2006 Olympic team.
The 25 year old Weatherston has missed most of the season with injuries. 32 year old Pounder was making a come back this season after sitting out 2007-08 season to have a baby.
Canada is bringing up a lot of youth, which is both good and necessary, as there are just too many good young female hockey players in this country. Eric Duhatschek has more on that.
The fact the game is thriving in Canada has a direct correlation to the women who pioneered the game. It is probably this website's best kept secret, but I do try to profile women hockey legends amongst the Greatest Hockey Legends.
So as we look forward to the world championships and 2010 Olympics, be sure to take a moment to look back and remember the women who brought the ladies game to where it is now. Here's who I have profiled so far:
France St. Louis
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