News and Announcements
MVPL coming to Victoria May 13
The Metro Vancouver Pro League (MVPL) is coming to Victoria on Saturday, May 13 and this is one of the rare occasions that Vancouver Island will entertain Canada’s best men’s players including several from the Canadian national team and Olympians. You may even see some of these players at Victoria Junior League sessions that weekend!
The four-team semifinal action will take place at the University of Victoria with games at 3:00 pm (2nd vs 3rd place) and 4:30 pm (1st vs 4th place). Along with the games, there are opportunities for youth to take place in the opening walkouts or as ball kids and opportunities for the community to learn from international officials including technical officials and umpires.
The MVPL was formed in 2022 and this is the second instalment of the high-performance field hockey league that focuses on diversity, inclusion, sportsmanship, integrity and respect for the game. Each of the four teams are named after key contributors to the sport of field hockey and the player draft balances the senior and junior talent for balanced but competitive competition. This is the highest-level men’s field hockey that can be played in Canada.
Interested in taking part? Here are the details:
COME WATCH – Saturday, May 13, 2023
• 3:00 pm – Game 1 (2nd vs 3rd Place)
• 4:30 pm – Game 2 (1st vs 4th Place)
Admission is free and seating is first come first serve. The pace of the game is high and so is the ball speed. Please ensure children are supervised and are paying attention if near the sidelines.
Youth participation – walk out buddies (U8 and U6) and ball kids (U14-U18)
• Please contact Ali Baggott: email@example.com
• Must be available 2:45-3:15pm for Game 1 and/or 4:15-4:45pm for Game 1.
• Walk out buddies are only needed for the beginning of each game
• Ball kids are needed 10 min before the game and throughout the game time(s)
Interested in learning about Technical Official roles or want to support on game day?
• Please contact Brenda Rushton: firstname.lastname@example.org
Umpire Development Workshop
• Please register online (free): https://forms.gle/pQSFivPohxwbSMGB9
• Register by May 10, 2023.
• This session runs 2-6:30pm and will be facilitated by Alan Waterman (Olympic umpire, FIH Umpire Manager) and will include Q&As with current international umpires Lelia Sacre, Tyler Klenk, Meghan McLennan and Megan Robertson.
Check out the MVPL online:
Feature photo: Harbir Sidhu (Canadian men’s national team player, former UVic Vikes player from Victoria, B.C.).
Photo Credit: Chris Bulowski
1992-93 Vikes to be inducted into UVic Sports Hall of Fame
The University of Victoria is pleased to welcome two historic powerhouse teams to it’s 2023 Hall of Fame class. Finding their place in the coveted Vikes Walk of Excellence is the 1992-93 women’s field hockey team and the 1982-83 men’s basketball team. The team will be honoured at a special induction ceremony on May 11, 2023.
1992-93 Women’s field hockey
After a year off playing for the Canadian women’s national team, Milena Gaiga, Rochelle Low and Sue Reid return back to the 1992 University of Victoria field hockey team. Also returning to the Vikettes line-up was key midfield player and Victoria native, Cara Jay.
This season, field hockey Canada adopted the new unlimited substitutions rule for the first time. The new rule provided the opportunity for athletes to have more playing time and improve their game. If anything, unlimited substitution worked in favour for the Vikes as they dominated their Canada West opponents. Midway through the regular season the Vikettes remained undefeated as they played the University of Calgary in the snow. After sweeping the weekend tournament, the Vikettes were ranked No. 1 in the country.
For the first time in two years UVic hosted the Canada West championship tournament. The tournament provided them with the opportunity to showcase their talent at home and more historically, christen their new artificial turf.
In game one UVic defeated Alberta 2-0 in a hard fought, challenging game. Later that afternoon, the Vikettes played Manitoba. The three team combo of Juliet Anderton, Giaga and Low got the best of the Manitoba team as the three secured a sequence of plays converting into two goals. Colleen MacLeod finished the game with a third goal to give UVic a 3-0 victory over Manitoba. The third game had UVic pitted against Calgary. In the first half UVic’s Brenda Lannard secured the first goal. Later in the second half, Robin Vinge provided reassurance as the Vikettes defeated Calgary 2-0. In the final game of the championships, UVic played mainland rivals, University of British Columbia. For the first time that season, UVic tied UBC 2-2 with two back-to-back from Low.
Gaiga, Low and Reid were named Canada West All-Stars, while Low was dubbed Canada West Universities Athlete Association player of the year.
UVic travelled to the mainland for the 1992 Canadian Interuniversity Athlete Union (CIAU) national championships, hosted by the University of British Columbia (UBC). In round-robin play the Vikettes played the University of New Brunswick (UNB) and York University. In game one UVic tied UNB 0-0. In game two the Vikettes beat York 1-0, just enough to make the semifinals. Facing, University of Toronto Varsity Blues in the semifinals UVic powered through to defeat them 4-0. Goals were scored from Anderton, Gaiga and two from Reid.
In the gold medal game the Vikettes met UNB. To the Vikettes surprise, every time they had possession of the ball, UNB would yell, “retreat!” and run back past the 50 (half field line). Vikette Jay recalls the 1992 finals to be one of the strangest games she every played. Nonetheless, it opened the field for the determined Vikettes to enter their zone in full force and defeat UNB 2-0 to take home UVic’s fifth field hockey championship banner. Goals were scored by Lannard and Anderton.
Low and Reid were named CIAU First Team All-Canadians, while Gaiga was the lone Vike to be named to the Second All-Canadian team. Low was named player of the gold medal game. However, leader Low thought Jay deserved the honour and gave the award to her afterwards. Low, Reid and Gaiga were also named to the tournament XI roster.
Following the 1992 season, Low was honoured as a 1993 Canada West Athletic Association (CWAA) female recipient of the Borden Ladner Gervais (BLG) Award. The BLG award represents a student athlete who has participated in university varsity athletics for a minimum of two years, studying in the field of their first undergraduate degree or graduate program, is an Athlete of the Year or runner up and has not previously won the BLG award. The award was created to support Canadian university athletes after the financial cutback during the early 1990s. Low was the first University of Victoria student-athlete to accept the award.
The 1994 championship win earned Jay the most decorated CIAU women’s field hockey athlete. In her five years as a Vikette, (1989, 90, 91, 92, 94) Jay won four championships and one silver place finish.
The 1992 University Martlet Newspaper recognized the reign of the women’s field hockey team by expressing their personal thoughts on the team’s success. “It was a total team effort, as it has been all year long. This is indeed a team that embodies everything that a university squad should be, and a team that at least deserves to have its banners [hung] in the [McKinnon] gym.” Teamwork was exactly what head coach Lynne Beecroft emphasized all season. Beecroft “attributes the team’s success to their high level of dedication and training on and off the field.”
That summer, Gaiga, Low, Reid and alumni Debbie Whitten and Lauralee Kopeck represented Canada at the 1992 Barcelona Olympic Summer Games. Canada finished seventh.
Canada West Record: 11-0-1 (1st)
Canada West All-Stars: Milena Gaiga, Sue Reid, Rochelle Low
Canada West Player of the Year: Rochelle Low
CIAU Record: 2-0-1(Gold)
CIAU First Team All-Canadian: Rochelle Low, Sue Reid
CIAU Second Team All-Canadian: Milena Gaiga
CIAU Player of the Year (Liz Hoffman Award): Rochelle Low
Hockey Vendors in Victoria on April 16
The Victoria Junior League starts this weekend, April 15-16, and we are excited that two hockey supply vendors from Vancouver will be here on Sunday, April 16 from 9am-5:30pm up at the University of Victoria beside the water-based field.
Please come up and visit if you are interested in purchasing equipment from:
1) Osaka Americas – https://osakaworld.com
2) Ritual Hockey – https://ritualhockey.com/
The above two brands will in Victoria for the day and will have a supply of sticks, shoes, bags and accessories.
A reminder that we have local partners should you need any equipment throughout the year:
- Kirby’s Source for Sports (894 Cloverdale) carries Grays equipment via AK Pro Canada https://www.akprocanada.com/
- Heather Goodman in Duncan (email@example.com) is a rep for Hockey King Sports (including Brabo) https://hockeykingsports.com/
- Bunny Hughes (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a rep for the Field Hockey Shack (including Gryphon) https://www.fieldhockeyshack.com/
Katie Bennett named league’s Most Outstanding Player as VILFHA celebrates return of annual awards
The annual VILFHA awards returned after a two-year pandemic hiatus and a successful, entire season was played for 2022-23.
The VILFHA executive and team representatives are pleased to announce this year’s award winners highlighted by Rebels Patriots midfielder Katie Bennett being named the league’s Most Outstanding Player and Hibbert Trophy winner. Division MVPs included Patriots’ Lindsay Cole (Division 1), both Sarah Mastromonaco of the Sailors and Lisa Rempel of the Rogues (Division 2) and both Renegades’ Julie Williams and Lynx 3’s Caitlin Hastings (Division 3). The Trelawney Shield for the Top Junior Player is awarded to the Lynx 1’s Rebecca Stone, while the Foley Shield for Most Improved Umpire is awarded to Cowichan’s Brooke Wipplinger.
In addition, the prestigious Christine Trophy for service, ability and sportsmanship was awarded to long-time member of the Pirates, Erica Kjekstad.
Penn Trophy (Div 1): Patriots
Kelman Trophy (Div 2): Lynx 2
Jenny John Trophy (Div 3): Demons
Boudreau Trophy (Div 1): Lynx Blue
Al Chedd Memorial Trophy (Div 2): Lynx 2
Anne Bridge Memorial Trophy (Div 3): Demons
Division 1: Lynx 1
Division 2: Cardinals
Division 3: Devils
Head to the VILFHA Facebook Page to see individual posts on each winner and offer your congratulations: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.687169713415132&type=3
View past winners: https://www.teampages.com/leagues/1279/pages/82197
Hibbert Trophy – Most Outstanding Player
Katie Bennett, Patriots
Katie was instrumental to the Patriots’ success this season and her presence was greatly missed when she had to miss games due to work commitments as a dedicated health care worker and nurse. Katie’s speed and tenacity in both directions made her one the most impactful midfielder in the league and helped her team capture the league title. While she may not have been the one scoring the goals, she drew a lot of attention towards her to free up her teammates and was a tireless worker on defence and offence. Katie was named Player of the Game by her team and her opponent’s teams 15 times, often in the same game and more than any other player in the league. Katie is also a humble opponent to play against and a cheerful and contributing teammate.
Christine Trophy – Service, Ability, Sportsmanship
Erica Kjekstad, Pirates
Erica Kjekstad is a long-time VILFHA member and key player on the division 3 Pirates team. On the field, she is a core player with superb skills, extreme composure and relentless tenacity. She is a sportsmanlike and cheerful opponent and joyful and kind teammate. Off the field Erica has still been at arm’s distance to the VILFHA executive despite stepping down the season previous. Erica still helps maintain the books for the league while the treasurer position remains vacant. Previously helping organize the Victoria Junior League, there is no shortage of contributions Erica has made over the years. This year, Erica was called up and helped fill in when her club teams in higher divisions were short and once played for the Mariners, Sailors and Pirates on the same day. Erica has also picked up umpiring in the wake of the umpire shortage across the island and has been committed to learning, growing and practicing her new official skills.
- Trelawney Shield – Top Junior (U18) Player*
Rebecca Stone, Lynx 1
Rebecca Stone has been a key player for the Lynx club this season. A staple in the middle of the pitch, Rebecca quietly but effectively collects and delivers the ball for her team in a way that seems to set the tempo and keep the rhythm for her side. Rebecca helped guide her high school team, St. Michael’s University School, to a AA Provincial Championship this year and she is soon off to represent Canada as a member of the U18 National touring team. Rebecca has consistently shown she has the playing maturity to compete with the island’s best and the league looks forward to seeing her shine as part of the UVic Vikes women’s program next season, where she recently announced her commitment.
Foley Shield – Most Improved Umpire
Brooke Wipplinger, Cowichan FHC
Brooke Wipplinger is a young umpire from Cowichan who has gone above and beyond to grow her skills as an outdoor and indoor umpire. Alison Sweeten, President of the Umpires Association, eagerly presented the award in person to Brooke and was quick to highlight Brooke’s commitment to learning and her improvement in this season alone. Brooke umpired multiple games at the U18 BC Indoor Championships and shown confidence to step up to umpire at the senior indoor championship a week later. Brooke’s contributions as an umpire are even further highlighted by the fact that there are less senior umpire mentors in the Cowichan region so she has gone out of her way to get the variety of umpire support she craves.
Division 1 MVP & All-Stars
MVP: Lindsay Cole
Lindsay Cole would be the first person you would notice when you watch a Patriots game. Her speed, tenacity and flare on the pitch can’t go unnoticed. Lindsay scored 13 goals in 15 regular season games played, with the team having three other goals in the season being scored by two other players. The Patriots won the league title and that would not have been possible without Lindsay’s ability to score in free play and on penalty corners. Playing in the middle of the pitch Lindsay is almost always the spark to any Patriots’ team attack and she is first to run out on defensive penalty corners.
Division 1 All-Stars:
Irene Morilla, Lynx 1
Rebecca Stone, Lynx 1
Kyla Kirby, Lynx 1
Anais Chace, Lynx 1
Ashton Aumen, Mariners
Nicole Gaul, Mariners
Ali Baggott, Mariners
Katie Bennett, Patriots
Lindsay Cole, Patriots
Heather Wheatley, Patriots
Division 2 MVP & All-Stars
MVP: Sarah Mastromonaco, Sailors & Lisa Rempel, Rogues
Sailors’ midfielder Sarah Mastomonaco and Rebels’ midfielder Lisa Rempel shared the honours of Division 2 Most Valuable Player. For the Sailors, Sarah was instrumental for the team that faced a lot of transition since the pandemic. Her speed, tenacity and control on the ball was the glue that held the Sailors together. Sarah scored three goals in the season and provided a lot of the energy and speed for the team. Lisa Rempel is no stranger to the island hockey scene and her experience and low tackles made her an integral part of the newly re-named Rebels side, the Rogues. Lisa is everywhere on the pitch at any given time. She is a wall to try and bypass but her soft hands in the circle help her keep the team’s composure in either end of the pitch. Lisa played all but one game this season and her two-way efforts hardly went unnoticed.
Division 2 All-Stars:
Ava Winter, Cardinals
Anna Maria Jordan, Cardinals
Kendra Burley, Cardinals
Monet Thurbide, Lynx 2
Kendyll Adams, Lynx 2
Wynn Brown, Lynx 2
Lisa Rempel, Rogues
Haley Hall, Rogues
Sarah Mastromonaco, Sailors
Shannon Petrovic, Sailors
Kaileigh Graham, Sailors
Division 3 MVP & All-Stars
MVP: Julie Williams, Renegades & Caitlin Hastings, Lynx 3
In Division 3, the Most Valuable Player award was also shared and this time between Renegades forward Julie Williams and Lynx 3 defender/midfielder Caitlin Hastings. Julie’s control of the ball up front gave the Renegades the experience they needed on attack. Julie was the team’s leading goal scorer, with seven goals, and the next highest goal scorer only had two goals. Julie is also a voice on the team to help her side with positioning and movement on the field. For Lynx 3, the experience and composure of Caitlin Hastings is long overdue from being recognized. Caitlin is the central player that makes a youthful team look cohesive and on the same page. As the voice from the back, Caitlin is often helping mentor her younger teammates in their first season of playing women’s league and she is a key role model for them. Caitlin’s strength on the ball, distribution and defensive skills were critical for Lynx 3’s success. Caitlin was the team’s second-highest goal scorer with five goals, behind Anika Benson’s leading six.
Division 3 All-Stars:
Helen Currey, Demons
Lisa Adamschek, Demons
Natalie Work, Demons
Alice Lam, Devils
Caitlin Hastings, Lynx 3
Kate Flye, Lynx 3
Kristen Ingelman, Lynx 3
Tracey Varian, Pirates
Erica Kjekstad, Pirates
Louise Good, Pirates
Julie Williams, Renegades
Sarah Solaczek, Renegades
Tenille Cole, Renegades
Hayley Picard, Stellers
Sadie Tucker, Stellers
All of the award winners were honoured in person at the Spring General Meeting on April 4 at the Juan de Fuca lower clubhouse. All-star winners were presented with VILFHA crested shirts, while major award winners received perpetual trophies and VILFHA crested hoodies.
Importance of Respect and Courtesy towards Officials
Dear Field Hockey BC Member,
As the 2022-23 Senior Season closes and the 2023 Junior Season opens this coming weekend, I write on behalf of the FHBC Board of Directors to highlight and remind all members about the importance of respect and courtesy towards our valued Officials and Umpires at all levels of field hockey across BC.
Our great game cannot function or offer a compelling value proposition without Officials and Umpires driving the sport forward in partnership with Coaches, Players, Volunteers, and Fans. Without them we do not have a game or a sport. Like Players and Coaches, Umpires and Officials devote time, energy and expertise into performing their duties on a weekly basis and we should appreciate all the time and effort they put in.
If Field Hockey across BC is going to continue to thrive and maintain the amazing sense of community and inclusiveness it has, there needs to be respect for everyone in the game. This respect must come from those both on and off the field of play. I would encourage everyone to refamiliarize themselves with the FHBC RESPECT PROGRAM and the associated Codes of Conduct that are available to read and download from the Documents section of the FHBC Website at https://fieldhockeybc.com/documents/.
It remains a given that Officials and Umpires make mistakes…as do Players and Coaches. Being an Umpire or Official is a tough and often thankless job. They give up their time to ensure Players, Coaches, Parents, Fans, and Spectators enjoy everything that is great about field hockey.
Regardless of decisions made, whether right or wrong, there is no excuse or justification for verbally abusing or threatening Officials and Umpires. Next time you think about criticizing an umpiring decision or witness someone hurling verbal abuse from beyond the field of play, choose RESPECT instead of criticism and ridicule.
We all have a responsibility to set an example through how we act and what we say. Just like acknowledging the opposition after a hard-fought game, Officials and Umpires deserve a ‘thank you’ for their participation regardless of the result.
Everyone has a responsibility to make field hockey the best game it can be. We are blessed to have so many fantastic people involved in our sport and by retaining Officials and Umpires and attracting others to take up these important roles, field hockey across BC will continue to go from strength to strength. Here’s to a memorable, for all the right reasons, Spring and Summer season. Enjoy!
Yours in sport,
Field Hockey BC
March 31, 2023