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Local girls picked for B.C. Games
Two local female hockey players have been named to the Fraser Valley team for the B.C. Winter Games, which are coming up Feb. 20-23 in Mission.
Forward Alexis Kahlert and defenceman Emily Duchak will will both be on the squad, which is a rep team for under-16 girls. There are 20 players per zone, and eight provincial zones in the competition.
Zone 3 is the Fraser Valley – a hotbed of women’s hockey in B.C. It takes in all of the Valley’s major centers, including Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody, Langley, Surrey, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.
Zone 3 coach Al Wozney said that his Fraser Valley team will be favoured to win the tournament.
“On paper, we’re probably the top team. We have a lot of depth.”
Competition rules state that the team can’t practice more than once before the Games begin. With just one Feb. 17 ice time to get ready, the challenge will be for the team to find some chemistry quickly.
The team was picked from 50 girls in the region who tried out.
Wozney said Duchak is part of a talented Surrey Falcons bantam team, and he mined them for six defenders, and 10 players in total.
“She’s got great skills, she’s a good skater, she sees the ice well, and she worked really hard in the tryouts.”
He expects Kahlert to get in on the forecheck, and win some loose pucks. She plays with the Ridge Meadows bantam A2 boys’ team, and is an assistant captain.
“She’s got good energy. She plays hard, and plays strong in the corners.”
The coach noted that selectors for both Team B.C. and the national under-18 team will be in attendance at the Games, and so will college scouts.
“You get a lot of scouts there. This is an important step for these girls.”