The area is represented in all three position groups on the U15 AAA female Westman Wildcats.
Virden players Jaedyn Hoemsen and Molly Studer are utilized at forward and on defence, respectively. Griswold’s Gracie Johnston and Kylie Hack of Reston guard the crease for the regional hockey team, which plays most of its home games in Deloraine. The Wildcats are competing in the inaugural season of the U15 AAA Manitoba Female Hockey League.
“This is also the first year that the U15 AAA Westman Wilcats have played in a league, which is very exciting,” Westman head coach Karissa Haney said. “We have about half of our players returning from last year, and half that are new to the team. Our girls get along great and we have a great team dynamic.”
As of Monday, the Wildcats sat second in the league standings with a 10-3 record. Early in the season, Haney said, “I think we will be very strong offensively this year.” That has proven to be true thus far. As of Monday, the Wildcats were second in the league with 76 goals for.
Up front, Hoemsen tries to help Westman both offensively and defensively. Through 11 games, she has a goal and three points.
“She is a good skater, has a great shot and good hands,” Haney said.
Studer plays a role on the Wildcats’ blueline. She has one goal and three points in 13 games, as of Monday.
“She is a steady, good skating defenceman who makes smart plays on the ice,” Haney said.
Johnston leads the Wildcats with a 2.69 goals against average. Hack has a team-best .907 save percentage. She has a 3.21 GAA, while Johnston’s save percentage is .907.
“They have both had a great start to the season,” Haney said. “They both do a great job of controlling rebounds and moving quickly in the net. Gracie does an excellent job of staying calm and has already made some big saves. Kylie has a great attitude and is very willing to ask questions and take advice. Both work well with our goalie coach Amber Mills.”