On Nov. 22 and Nov. 23, the Dinos were able to win back-to-back games against the Mount Royal University Cougars. These wins improved the Dinos’s Canada West conference record to 11–3 — good enough for a second-place ranking in Canadian Interuniversity Sport.
These wins are another step in the right direction for bringing the team closer to its season goal of defending their first-ever CIS championship win.
Dinos centre Hayley Wickenheiser is widely considered to be the best women’s hockey player in Canadian history.
Wickenheiser said that the U of C “should be the place to go” because of its status among prospective players.
Head coach and recent inductee to the International Ice Hockey Federations’ Hall of Fame Danielle Goyette shares a close bond with Wickenheiser. Wickenheiser said that Goyette was “the sole reason for playing for the Dinos.” The two share a close friendship that was forged through playing on the same team on the international stage.
The first time that Wickenheiser and Goyette played together was during the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics, where Team Canada won a silver medal. However, Wickenheiser said that, while playing and practicing, their “relationship is kept strictly professional.”
The presence of assistant coach Kelly Bechard has also been important for Wickenheiser. The two have past experiences winning gold at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City.
Traditionally, a popular route for Canadian female hockey players has been to pursue scholarships in the American NCAA system. This has been a major drawback for Canadian universities.
Wickenheiser believes that this culture “is changing, but more scholarships are definitely needed” in order to lure more players into joining the CIS.
This season may be the last for Wickenheiser. She said that after playing with the Dinos she has her sights set on medical school to become a doctor. First, the Dinos have a chance to repeat as CIS champions and will enjoy every moment with Wickenheiser.