Gridiron hero Stevi Schnoor a star on the rise

With her star on the rise, Stevi Schnoor is quickly emerging as one of Canada’s female sporting sensations. Currently competing with the BC Angels in Legends Football League Canada, her coming out party was the 2013 Pacific Cup.

As the LFL’s annual holiday showcase, the event was meant to feature the Seattle Mist and the Angels. With the 2013 LFL Canada season having been cancelled, the Los Angeles Temptation were last minute replacements for the contest.

Schnoor

Undeterred, Schnoor and two of her Angels teammates, Mary-Anne Hanson and Deanna Schaper-Kotter, suited up for the Mist. Having made many sacrifices to prepare for the game, this remarkable trio of Angels not only bonded during the experience, but contributed to a 27-25 Mist victory. Of note, Hanson and Schnoor also became the first players to compete in consecutive Pacific Cups with two different franchises.

Scoring three touchdowns in the contest, Schnoor was recognized as the Most Valuable Player of the Pacific Cup. Dubbed Stevi Wonder by the fans, her performance provided her with a treasured place in Seattle Mist lore.

Of note, this follows up on another sparkling MVP performance the year prior. During the inaugural LFL Canada season in 2012, Schnoor nabbed postseason MVP honors as the Angels claimed the league championship. That year, she would also compete with BC’s provincial team in the 2012 Canadian National Women’s League Finals.

To those who know her on the field of rugby, her success comes as no surprise. Known affectionately as Breezy, she competes at the Inside Centre position while competing for Canada at the 2009 Nations Cup. Having won five BC provincial high school rugby championships at Gleneagle, there is no question that Schnoor is a proven winner.

Recognized as one of the MVP’s from BC Rugby News in 2011, she is also a former Canadian women’s national rugby team member. Also a founding member of the United RFC, she has over 15 years experience in the sport.

Although the game of football is a series of executed plays which only last for several seconds, Schnoor adjusted very quickly. Her endurance as a rugby player enabled her to contribute to the Angels on offense, defense and special teams. With the support of rugby teammates at Angels contests in 2012, it is testament to the high regard she is placed in.

Truly a team player and a friend to so many teammates, Schnoor is also an athletic humanitarian. Having also played for the Dog River Howlers, a 2013 sojourn to Kenya included Howler rugby balls and t-shirts. Having travelled with her father to the African nation with the charitable cause A Better World, whose focus is on community development, Schnoor is also a champion off the field.

Humphries and Moyse continue to set the global standard in bobsledding

A December 14 showing in Lake Placid found the remarkable bobsledding duo of Kaillie Humphries and Heather Moyse on top of the World Cup podium. Clocking a two-heat combined run of 1:53.66, the closest competitor was Elana Meyers and Lauryn Williams of the United States by 0.12 seconds. Of note, Meyers also took second place to Humphries at the season opening event in Calgary, Alberta.

In the first run, the duo logged a track record with a sparkling time of 56.63 seconds, which was merely .02 seconds faster than the persistent Meyers. Perhaps the most impressive aspect was the fact that Moyse was nursing a back injury.

November 2013: Humphries, centre, holds her niece Haze beside partner Heather Moyse after capturing first in a women's bobsleigh World Cup event in Calgary. Photograph by: Todd Korol , Getty Images

November 2013: Humphries, centre, holds her niece Haze beside partner Heather Moyse after capturing first in a women’s bobsleigh World Cup event in Calgary. Photograph by: Todd Korol , Getty Images

The week prior, Calgary-native Humphries found her streak of 15 straight podium finishes snapped in Park City, Utah. Of note, the streak also included 11 victories. With Moyse unable to compete, Chelsea Valois of Zenon Park, Saskatchewan stepped in. The two would grab a world title in 2012-13 but were unable to duplicate their magic again.

Heavy snow played a factor as the team was unable to keep Humphries streak alive. A disappointing seventh-place would serve as the final result. During the Lake Placid race, Valois raced with Edmonton native Jenny Ciochetti, with a 14th place finish.

Proud PEI native Heather Moyse promoting homegrown potatoes (Image obtained from: www.potatopro.com)

Proud PEI native Heather Moyse promoting homegrown potatoes (Image obtained from: http://www.potatopro.com)

Summerside, PEI resident Moyse is a multi-sport athlete who has also represented Canada on the international stage in rugby and cycling. Of note, she was the leading scorer at the 2006 Rugby World Cup. With the sport making its Summer Games debut at Rio 2016, the thought of Moyse suiting up for Canada on the pitch would only solidify her legend. Having actually started in bobsled at 27, she competed in bobsled with Helen Upperton at the 2006 Torino Winter Games.

While Moyse took a break from bobsledding after the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, the two have reunited for the 2013-14 season. With the season opener on home soil, Humphries and Moyse made an impression as they set a new Canadian track record in Calgary. The duo would soar through Canada Olympic Park in 55.89 seconds, as a quarter-second was lopped off the previous record, held by Lesa Mayes-Stringer and Jamie Cruickshank.

Heading into the Sochi Winter Games as favorites for a gold medal, the track may have a significant factor in which team emerges victorious. With three uphill sections, it shall serve as a brand new experience for many competitors. The last time that a track had three such sections was at the 1998 Nagano Winter Games.

New reality series Rodeo Girls provides glimpse into rarely seen world

Providing a glimpse into the efforts of six strong women to shatter the glass ceiling in the male dominated world of rodeo, Rodeo Girls is the newest reality program on the A&E Network. While the ladies cover two generations, the essence of competition knows no age. Race footage and the reaction shots of the other women captures the adrenaline rush of barrel racing.

Not without its drama, the program blends elements from MTV’s The Real World and the Bravo franchise The Real Housewives. The aspect which blends itself into qualities from The Real World include that viewers feel an affinity towards certain characters while obtaining the feeling that they are right there as the action unfolds.

For viewers of The Real Housewives, the jealousy and tensions that emanate over wealth, privilege and beauty also rear its head on Rodeo Girls. After a rodeo event, the ladies are seen carousing in a local bar and the claws come out, as several ladies vent frustrations about LaPier behind her back. Of note, the ladies in question do apologize in the second episode, setting a positive example for the rookies.

Darcy LaPier

Darcy LaPier

Like any other program, various archetypes are featured. Rookie Jessica Holmberg, who broke the record at Trails End Arena in Olympia, Washington, is the blonde girl next door whose heart was broken. Fellow rookie Megan Etcheberry is the brunette, a perfect foil for Jessica. Having both endured personal tragedies in their lives, their perseverance cannot be questioned.

Rodeo veteran Barb West is the mother figure of the group, brining Jessica under her wing. She is joined by Sadie Sullivan, a no-nonsense wrangler who is a friend and support mechanism for West. Marvel Murphy is like an iron woman, willing to compete in spite of injury for the love of the competition. Darcy LaPier is portrayed (although sometimes unfairly) as the antagonist. While all of these women are older than the rookies, they possess a wisdom and maturity which forms a strong inner beauty to complement their outer beauty.

Clockwise from top left: Darcy LaPier, Marvel Murphy, Barb West, Morgan Etcheberry, Jessica Holmberg and Sadie Sullivan (Image obtained from: www.aetv.com/rodeo-girls/cast)

Clockwise from top left: Darcy LaPier, Marvel Murphy, Barb West, Morgan Etcheberry, Jessica Holmberg and Sadie Sullivan (Image obtained from: http://www.aetv.com/rodeo-girls/cast)

Early in the first episode, LaPier emerges from a private jet in a tight black dress, and proceeds to change into her cowgirl clothing in the backseat of a limousine. A later scene shows LaPier with the acquisition of an accomplished horse named Dash. It becomes evident very early in said episode that her wealth can serve to occasionally isolate her from the others.

As the prized horse is easily recognized by Marvel Murphy, a talented yet gutsy competitor with rodeo in her blood, the claws come out. She quickly states that a real cowgirl develops the horse rather than buying it. A comment from West also states that LaPier’s wealth gets old quickly.

RGStills

By the culmination of the first episode, LaPier’s horse does not provide the desired results. All five ladies competed in Barrel Racing (in which the horse circles three barrels in a clover-leaf pattern, with a five-second penalty if the horse knocks one over), an event specifically for women to compete in at the rodeo.

LaPier would finish second among the five with a time of 18.39, while Marvel Murphy (with a broken ankle) logged an inspiring time of 18.15. Like Brett Favre playing football with a separated shoulder or Michael Jordan competing in basketball with the flu, Murphy is a tough as nails racer, embodying the spirit of empowerment.

Left to right: Holmberg, Murphy and LaPier in Las Vegas. Image obtained from: https://twitter.com/darcylapier

Left to right: Holmberg, Murphy and LaPier in Las Vegas. Image obtained from: https://twitter.com/darcylapier

Also one of the show’s executive producers, LaPier is an object of admiration yet jealousy. A swimsuit model in the 1990’s, she has been married to Hawaiian Tropic mogul Ron Rice, action film star Jean-Claude van Damme and Herbalife founder Mark Hughes. After the tragic death of Hughes, LaPier relocated to Oregon and purchased a ranch as part of the healing process.

With her beauty and considerable wealth, LaPier bears a strong resemblance to Sofia Vergara, making her a sex symbol on the program. Her projection on-screen places her in a villain role a la Joan Collins from the 1980’s blockbuster hit Dynasty. Of note, she is also a mother of three and her motherly empathy comes across. After she was “Marved” (receiving a phone call from Marvel in trouble), she displays genuine concern. With Murphy and the two rookies come unannounced to her door, she prepares them a meal. Despite past disputes, her effort to provide them with a meal shows remarkable forgiveness and maturity.

Barb West

Barb West

While Murphy is quick to declare that it is an all-male environment, the appearance of her younger cousin Ty certainly adds a male support role. Although Ty is critical of women not being focused enough to succeed, he is portrayed as the quintessential knuckle dragger. He is joined by the mandatory love interest, Anthony.

As life on the road relies heavily on the support of friends, the need for warmth and intimacy lingers. In the first episode, relationships statuses are discussed early on. he lassos his rope around LaPier and talks her into a date. The evening afterwards, he is seen flirting with Jessica.

Like all other programs in the Reality TV genre, there is also the obligatory showing of skin. Within the last five minutes of the second episode, the ladies enter a bikini barrel racing competition. While Murphy refuses to participate, the remaining women all choose to participate. Of note, Sadie Sullivan (one of West’s wranglers) even dons a bikini as a show of support. While Sullivan could be described as a ballsy woman, she comes across as very soft and likeable in her bikini.

While all of these women look striking in their swimsuit attire, it is somewhat sad that even in a sport like rodeo, there is a need to employ sex appeal. Sports such as football, floor hockey, basketball and even fishing have employed scantily-clad women in an effort to gain fans and potential viewers. Although it is unlikely that any of the macho men in rodeo would be daring enough to ride a bull in a Speedo, the courage needed to don a bikini and endure scrapes from falling exemplify how amazing these rodeo girls truly are.

So far, the program has met with mixed results. Pre-show complaints stated that the show is not an accurate portrayal while criticizing that some women are not real professional rodeo girls. To be fair, the rookies have yet to earn their professional status, while the program is also meant to provide entertainment. Infighting aside, there is a certain adrenaline rush that comes from watching these daring women race around the barrels.

For anyone to accuse the rest of these women to not be real professionals is at their own risk. Barb West is a 2009 Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo Champion while Murphy is a three-time Nevada State High School All-Around champion cowgirl. In addition, she earned a scholarship to Texas Tech University.

With Hollywood moguls Bob and Harvey Weinstein serving as executive producers, the show has a fighting chance to round up many potential viewers. Whether it has the opportunity to become a pop culture phenomenon in the same lines as other A&E reality offerings, such as Duck Dynasty and Storage Wars, is too early to tell, but its glance into such a unique world is one that is certainly worth watching.

Water polo participant Maureen Sullivan establishes herself as Ohio high school superstar

Having led the Mason High Comets of Mason, Ohio to their first state title in water polo, Maureen Sullivan left a remarkable athletic legacy. As a driver on the team, she scored three goals in the state title against Sycamore. In the 11-7 final, her hat trick was a key factor in the triumph.

Throughout the season, Sullivan contributed an astounding 126 goals while garnering the Ohio Player of the Year Award for the second consecutive season. Named an All-America in 2012, it came as a surprise to fans that she did not garner the same honor in 2013.

When she entered her freshman year at Mason High School, she faced to make the difficult choice of selecting between two autumn sports – volleyball (where she was a star in junior high) or water polo. Following in the footsteps of her brother Kelly, a high-school All-American before playing at San Diego Mesa College, she opted for water polo. With their father, Mark having coached the sport at Mason High, Maureen had a suitable mentor.

Considering that water polo in California is like football in many other regions, Sullivan acknowledges that she will not continue the sport collegiately. Opting to stay in her home state, she will make her way to Oxford, Ohio to compete with the University of Miami, Ohio swim team.

Although the chapter on her water polo career has closed, she ended with a remarkable season. With Mason, she led the program to their first State Championship. Accolades such as First-Team All-Ohio, First-Team All-American and All-Ohio Player of the Year are testament to her talents.

A three-time state qualifier in swimming, she managed a sixth-place finish at Districts in the 50 freestyle and 100 backstroke. While she is a sprint freestyle and backstroke specialist, she also helped Mason High excel in conference meets, where the program has grabbed the GMC Championships every year since 2007.

Tara Vanderveer adds to sparkling basketball legacy with her 900th career win

A November 27, 2013 victory over Florida Gulf Coast in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico provided Stanford head coach Tara Vanderveer with the 900th win of her glorious coaching career. In the 83-59 margin of victory, it made her only the fifth NCAA coach to reach the remarkable plateau. The victory extends her career coaching record to 900-204.

Stanford players held up signs with the number 900 on them once the buzzer signaled. Chiney Ogwumike contributed 27 points and 13 rebounds while Mikaela Ruef posted 14 points and 12 rebounds. Of note, both played for Stanford when Vanderveer logged career win 800. Former players and fans also tuned into social media to shower Vanderveer with heartfelt congratulations.

Players surround Vanderveer (holding the game ball) with 900 signs. (Photo credit: Casey Murphy/Plan BC3/AP)

Players surround Vanderveer (holding the game ball) with 900 signs. (Photo credit: Casey Murphy/Plan BC3/AP)

While she was very low key about the win, she joined the likes of Jody Conradt (900), C. Vivian Stringer (905), Sylvia Hatchell (908) and Pat Summitt in the 900-win club. The all-time wins mark is held by Summitt with 1,098 victories. Considering her last 100 victories came in a three-year span, the 1,000-win mark is feasible by 2016.

Although Vanderveer is 60 years old, she has indicated that she has no plans to retire. Similar to baseball legend Casey Stengel, she could easily coach into her 70’s. Considering that Vanderveer coaches for the love of the game, the sight of her on the Stanford sideline into the next decade would not be far fetched.

Having graduated from the University of Indiana in 1975, she would sneak into the practices of the men’s team in order to obverse head coach Bobby Knight. Taking down notes on his strategies, he would become an inspiration to mentor. Having majored in sociology, she would be a three-year starter for the Hoosiers while earning induction into their Hall of Fame in 1995.

During her road to 900 wins, Vanderveer also coached with two other programs. Her first two seasons as a head coach were with the University of Idaho, starting in 1978. Ironically, she lost her first game. Five seasons at Ohio State would follow where she compiled a 110-37 mark before joining Stanford in 1985. In those 28 magical years, she led the program to 748 wins and an astounding 21 regular-season conference titles. This was complemented by two national championships and 10 appearances in the Final Four, including a string of five consecutive appearances from 2008-12, respectively.

The players she has coached includes a venerable who’s who of women’s basketball. Summer Games gold medalist Jennifer Azzi (whom she coached at the 1996 Atlanta Summer Games) was one of her first superstars. Having followed in her footsteps, Azzi is now the head coach for the University of San Francisco. Other alumni that have joined Azzi in the coaching ranks include players such as June Daugherty, Lindy LaRocque, Melanie Murphy and Charmin Smith.

Other superstars that Vanderveer recruited included Val Whiting, who would help Stanford capture the national title in 1990. Modern stars include the likes of Jayne Appel, Nicole Powell, Candice Wiggins and the Ogwumike sisters, Nneka and Chiney.

Vanderveer’s sister Heidi is also an NCAA basketball coach. In her first year as an assistant coach to Pat Summitt at Tennessee, she was part of the NCAA championship team. Currently the head coach at UC San Deigo, she talks basketball with her sister every day. Reputed for establishing teams in which her players were fundamentally sound basketball players, she was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002 and the Naismith Hall of Fame in 2011. While the greatest attribute in her career might be her consistency, all the players whose lives have been touched by her coaching acumen would attest that she is also a Hall of Famer in life.

Seven truly a lucky number for Jennifer Jones at Roar of the Rings

The women’s final at the Tim Horton’s Roar of the Rings at Winnipeg’s MTS Centre resulted in hometown hero Jennifer Jones earning her spot to the Sochi Winter Games. Ironically, the number seven would play a big role in her victory. Born on July 7 (the seventh day of the seventh month), she wears number 77 on her uniform.

In the seventh end, she cracked a three against Ontario’s Sherry Middaugh for a 7-3 advantage. The match would end in an 8-4 triumph. Having scored two three-enders, it turned the tide in Jones’ favor. Ironically, the victory came on December 7 while the Sochi Winter Games begins on February 7.

With 8,565 fans in attendance, Jones would punch her ticket to Sochi. Joining her shall be Kaitlyn Lawes, Jill Officer and Dawn McEwen. Of note, Officer and Jones began curling together in 1992. Despite a four-year sabbatical from the game, where Officer relocated to Brandon, the two shall see their successful partnership culminate with a chance to compete on the world’s biggest stage.

Skip Jennifer Jones, Kaitlyn Lawes, Jill Officer and Dawn McEwen ready for their close-up as they qualify for Sochi 2014 (Photo credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods)

Skip Jennifer Jones, Kaitlyn Lawes, Jill Officer and Dawn McEwen ready for their close-up as they qualify for Sochi 2014 (Photo credit: THE CANADIAN PRESS/John Woods)

Hailing from Coldwater, Ontario, the 47 year-old Middaugh never finished higher than third place during a Scotties Tournament of Hearts curling ational championship. The members of her rink featured third Jo-Ann Rizzo, second Lee Merklinger, lead Leigh Armstrong and alternate Lori Eddy. During round robin play, Jones had bested Middaugh by a 9-7 tally. Middaugh would defeat reigning Canadian champion Rachel Homan in a 10-4 upset to advance to the finals.

Facing stiff competition from Middaugh and Rachel Homan prior to the beginning of the event, Jones persevered. At 39 years of age, she has been curling for an astounding 28 years. The recipient of four Canadian championships, her accomplishments was complemented by achievements at the Women’s Worlds. Gold was claimed at the 2008 worlds in a victory over China and bronze in the 2010 edition. Of note, she will be part of the first Manitoba team to represent Canada in women’s curling at the Winter Games.

When not curling, Jones serves as corporate counsel for the Winnipeg branch of Wellington West Capital Holdings Inc. Her Bachelor of Arts in 1996 was followed with an LL.B. in 1999 from the University of Manitoba. Prior to joining the firm, she practiced law with the private law firm of Aikins MacAulay and Thorvaldson.

Middaugh and Jones both have unique connections in the game. Jones’ partner, Brent Laing, is a second for Glenn Howard’s rink. The two have a young daughter, Isabella. Middaugh’s husband Wayne, is the third for Howard’s rink. At the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, Cheryl Bernard had represented Canada in the women’s curling event. Taking home a silver after a loss to Sweden in the gold medal final, Jones is hoping to build on her strong curling legacy.

Roz Groenewoud earns celebrity status as newest face on General Mills food products

As one of Canada’s gold medal hopefuls at the 2014 Sochi Winter Games, Rosalind (Roz) Groenewoud is rapidly becoming a role model to a generation of young female skiers. Of note, the former gymnast and basketball player may also become part of their breakfast routines. With her image gracing the cover of Chocolate Cheerios boxes in Canada, her celebrity status is on the rise.

In addition to Chocolate Cheerios, her image also graces boxes of Oatmeal Crisp cereal and Nature Valley Granola Bars. She is one of a handful of Canadian athletes continuing in the tradition of being features on General Mills Canada food products prior to an Olympic games.

GMRoz1

With General Mills Canada having enjoyed a partnership with the Canadian Olympic Team that has spanned more than a decade, the firm has renewed its sponsorship agreement. With the agreement extended until the 2016 Rio Summer Games, other female athletes will proudly follow in Groenewoud’s footsteps.

Another chapter in her exciting sojourns to Sochi involved mega-retailer Target. Having recently expanded to Canada, their sponsorship of Groenewoud signifies a breakthrough. Of note, she is the first Canadian athlete, male or female, to have earned their sponsorship. This adds to a list of sponsors which also includes Kombi and Spyder.

GMRoz2

Hailing from British Columbia, the 23 year-old has competed in all four corners of the globe claiming two gold medals in the 2012 X-Games Super Pipe (Aspen, Colorado and Tignes, France), the 2012 AFP Halfpipe Overall ranking and a second place finish during the 2012 Winter Dew Tour.

In addition, she would also claim gold in the 2011 FIS Freestyle World Ski Championships. Like many athletes, superstitions are also compose an aspect in her competitions. Whether it be the use of Moulin Rouge lipstick or purple undergarments, once she graces the hill, she is known affectionately as Roz G. She has also garnered media attention from Teen Vogue and Fitness.

When she is not competing, she can be found in the classroom. In the same spirit as other female snow-sports athletes, such as fellow Canadian Kelsey Serwa, she is managing competition and academics. Studying math and physics at Quest University in Squamish, British Columbia, her academic ambitions include completing a Liberal Arts Degree in Science

Heading into Sochi, emotions will certainly be high for Groenewoud. Appreciating the jubilation of being a half pipe world champion, she has also had to cope with the desolation of losing her close friend Sarah Burke. Competing at the X-Games a week after her untimely loss exemplified the courage and character that Groenewoud possesses. She would dedicate her gold medal victories in her memory. To this day, Burke’s name is carried on her helmet.

With halfpipe being introduced in Sochi, it would be a tremendous part of her legacy to be the first competitor to grab the gold medal in the event. Also an athlete ambassador for Right to Play, she is a strong woman looking to set a positive example for young women who want to chase their dreams. Proving that women can be athletic yet feminine, Groenewoud’s positive messages already make her a champion in the hearts of her fans. Having the opportunity to now be part of Canadian breakfast tables, a new legion of fans is likely to follow.

Jill Cardella finishes strong month as CWHL leading scorer for November

While it comes as no surprise to see the defending Clarkson Cup champion Boston Blades sit atop the CWHL standings, the biggest surprise may be that rookie Jill Cardella has emerged as the league’s leading scorer. Selected 20th overall by the Blades in the 2013 CWHL Draft, she is one of five Blades players among the CWHL’s top ten scorers, Cardella has rode a remarkable wave of momentum.

Her CWHL debut set the tone for a superlative month of November. With the Blades hosting the league’s first game of the season on November 2, Cardella logged a two-point night with one goal and one assist. The following day, she would improve on her performance with a three-point output on the strength of two assists.

Of note, the November 2-3 sweep of the Brampton Thunder saw the Blades outscore the team by a convincing 9-3 combined score. Cardella would keep the hot hand as she would score again in a November 9 victory over the Montreal Stars. Scoring in the third period, it would stand as the game winning tally (the first in her CWHL career) as Brittany Ott made 51 saves in an epic performance.

With Blades head coach DIgit Muprhy on 2013 CWHL Draft Day (Image obtained from Boston CWHL facebook page)

With Blades head coach DIgit Muprhy on 2013 CWHL Draft Day (Image obtained from Boston CWHL facebook page)

With a goal in each of her first three CWHL games, Cardella quickly emerged as the most productive rookie in the early part of the season. Complemented by the performance of other Blades rookies such as Casey Pickett and Jillian Dempsey, ranking second and third in league scoring, the possibility of a second consecutive Clarkson Cup is very real.

The hot November that Cardella, Pickett and Dempsey have logged signifies the first time that the top three scorers in the first month of a CWHL season were American-born, a breakthrough moment in Blades history. Whenever Cardella logs at least one point this season, the Blades have enjoyed a sterling 5-1-0 mark. In games where she has registered multiple points, the Blades are undefeated, sporting a 3-0-0 record.

Perhaps the most impressive aspect of Cardella’s game is her dedication. Having never missed a game during her storied NCAA career with the Boston University Terriers, she is an iron woman. In her senior season with the BU Terriers, she helped the team capture the Hockey East championship while playing against Minnesota in the NCAA Frozen Four title game. Also serving as one of the Terriers co-captains, she set career highs in assists and points.

Whether she can retain this momentum throughout the remainder of the season waits to be seen. In the meanwhile, her solid leadership and dedication provides her team with an opportunity to win, which definitely holds as much value if not more than logging points.

Red Bull Crashed Ice world champion Fannie Desforges logs first career point in CWHL play

Having established herself as one of the world’s finest competitors in Red Bull Crashed Ice, Fannie Desforges is extending her status as a two-sport star to the frozen perimeter of the CWHL. The Red Bull Crashed Ice world champion in 2012, she would finish the 2013 competition in third place. Ironically, her newest teammate on the Montreal Stars, Dominqiue Thibault, would claim the world title in 2013.

A December 1 road contest against the Brampton Thunder would provide Desforges with an early holiday gift. Earning an assist on Cathy Chartrand’s shorthanded goal, it would be the first point in what will hopefully emerge as the beginning of a storied career.

In action with the Montreal Stars (Photo credit: Marc St. Amour)

In action with the Montreal Stars (Photo credit: Marc St. Amour)

With Marieve Provost serving a penalty for hooking (one of ten total penalties in an unruly second), Desforges and Carly Dupont-Hill set up Chartrand for a short-handed tally at the 18:16 mark of the second stanza. Said goal would provide Montreal with its second lead of the game.

Although Brampton would eventually tie the contest and prevail in a shootout, earning the first point is a milestone in any player’s career. Considering the number of rookies this season, there shall be many more milestones to come. Of note, Desforges will now be aiming for her first career goal in a series with the Calgary Inferno on December 14 and 15.

Selected in the seventh round of the 2013 CWHL Draft, the first assist is a tremendous confidence booster for the dynamic Desforges. Having had a stellar career with the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees, where she served as captain, her leadership skills shall be essential for a Montreal team looking to redeem itself after a shocking Clarkson Cup loss in March.

Through the first five games of her career, Desforges has provided the red, white and blue with solid disciplined play. Having only served two penalty minutes, her play is complemented by a +2 rating. As the Stars have over 10 rookies on the team, the chemistry should only improve heading into the new year. Should Desforges return to her point per game clip that made her such a competitor in CIS play, it will benefit everyone on the new-look Stars.