Some of the biggest names in the collegiate female hockey game from across Canada and the United States were in Winfield on the weekend as the Pursuit of Excellence hosted a female hockey evaluation weekend.
Fresh off leading his team to a perfect season (41-0-0) and capturing his second straight NCAA women’s ice hockey title, University of Minnesota Head Coach Brad Frost was one of the NCAA coaches in Winfield on the weekend to evaluate 85 top female midget players, many of whom hope to wear his jersey in the coming years.
The College Showcase was hosted by Pursuit of Excellence, a private hockey academy based in Lake Country. Over the course of four days the players had the opportunity to train and compete while under the watchful eyes of some of North America’s most talented and sought-after coaches. The camp was focused on development and included on and off-ice practices, games and one-on-one exposure and interaction with top tier coaches.
Frost was joined by 17 colleagues from renowned programs across Canada and the United States, including the University of Wisconsin, Ohio State and Boston University, to name a few.
Coaches were joined by scouts from several hockey programs as well in both Canada and the USA.
“The showcase offers these young players a really important development opportunity,” said Scott Spencer, head coach of Pursuit of Excellence girls programs. “They get a feel for what playing at the elite level is like, which will definitely elevate their game. They also gain access to some of the best coaches in women’s hockey. On the flip side, the coaches get to identify talented players who show incredible promise and make connections with them early on. It’s an important step in their recruitment process.”
The weekend marked the second annual College Showcase for Pursuit of Excellence. Last year the academy hosted its inaugural showcase and as a result, all four of Pursuit of Excellence’s graduating players made commitments to NCAA women’s ice hockey teams, evidence that early connections provide value to the process and the players, said Spencer.
“It’s a win-win for everyone involved,” he said. “We have players participating who aspire to play at the university level. Giving them the chance to demonstrate their skills and abilities and providing them with access to the calibre of coaches we have brought in this year will make a big difference in their future and in their development.”
After several years being based in Kelowna, Pursuit of Excellence has been running its programs from Lake Country for the past number of years with its students attending George Elliot school.
For more information about Pursuit of Excellence Hockey Academy, visit: www.pursuitofexcellencegirls.com.