2019 esso cup team preview sas
Road to the 2019 Esso Cup: Saskatoon Stars
The West Region champions are all the way back, looking to trade silver for gold
Quinton Amundson
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April 17, 2019
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They earned bronze in 2015, finished fourth in 2016 and settled for a silver medal in 2018. Now the Saskatoon Stars are hoping it will finally be their time to be the best at the Esso Cup.

Thirteen players who were part of the heartbreaking 2-1 loss to St. Albert in the gold medal game a year ago in Bridgewater N.S., are returning to Canada’s National Female Midget Championship on a mission to win gold.

“We talk about choices with the team, whether it’s an event in your life or a moment – you always have a choice with how you respond,” says head coach Greg Slobodzian. “The girls have chosen to respond in a very positive, motivated and driven way.”

Playing a puck-possessing, skill-heavy game, the Stars racked up an astonishing 149 goals in just 28 regular-season games in the Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League, which equates to 5.32 goals per game. This prolific offence, coupled with a defensive scheme that surrendered only 44 goals (1.57 per game), enabled the Stars to finish with 27 wins in 28 games.

The Stars built up a 24-point buffer over second-place Regina by winning their first 20 games. They dropped a 3-2 decision to the Rebels on Jan. 13, but quickly rebounded to enter the playoffs on a seven-game win streak.

The Stars were dominating in the playoffs with an 8-1 record, downing the Notre Dame Hounds and Regina before brushing aside the Westman Wildcats, the Manitoba champions, in two games to win the West Region title again.

Their defence has defined their playoff run; the Stars have surrendered two goals or less in all nine of their postseason match-ups.

HOW THEY GOT TO SUDBURY

Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League
Semifinal: defeated Notre Dame Hounds 3-1 (6-1, 3-1, 1-2 OT, 3-1)
SFMAAAHL championship: defeated Regina Rebels 3-0 (2-1, 4-1, 3-2)

West Regional
Championship: defeated Westman Wildcats 2-0 (3-2, 3-0)

REGULAR SEASON

Record (W-OTW-OTL-L): 24-3-0-1 (1st in SFMAAAHL)
Goals for: 149 (1st in SFMAAAHL)
Goals against: 44 (1st in SFMAAAHL)
Longest winning streak: 20 (Sept. 29-Jan. 12)
Top 3 scorers:
- Grace Shirley – 27G 21A 48P (2nd in SFMAAAHL)
- Kaitlin Jockims – 21G 24A 45P (3rd in SFMAAAHL)
- Anna Leschyshyn – 28G 18A 21P 39P (4th in SFMAAAHL)

PLAYOFFS

Record: 8-1
Goals for: 28
Goals against: 11
Top 3 scorers:
- Grace Shirley – 4G 9A 13P
- Kaitlin Jockims – 5G 7A 12P
- Anna Leschyshyn – 6G 4A 10P

NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP HISTORY

2015 – Saskatoon Stars | bronze medal | 5-2 | 26GF 13GA
2016 – Saskatoon Stars | fourth place | 3-4 | 12GF 17GA
2018 – Saskatoon Stars | silver medal | 6-1 | 29GF 16GA

PLAYERS TO WATCH

KAITLIN JOCKIMS
power forward … deceptive speed and toughness … creates plays out of nothing … makes her chances count

ASHLEY MESSIER
plays with speed … a playmaker on the back end … dynamic skill set … doesn’t sacrifice defence for offence

GRACE SHIRLEY
plays with passion and grit … a true leader on and off the ice … very good one-on-one … quick on her feet

For more information:

Esther Madziya
Coordinator, Media Relations
Hockey Canada
403-284-6484
[email protected]

 

Spencer Sharkey
Coordinator, Communications
Hockey Canada
Office: 403-777-4567
Mobile: 905-906-5327
[email protected]

 

Katie Macleod
Coordinator, Media Relations
Hockey Canada
Office: 403-284-6427
Mobile: 403-612-2893
[email protected]

 

Videos
Photos
2019 NPT Camp: WHT 5 – JPN 0 (Game 5)
Dunn lit the lamp three times to net White a victory over Japan.
2019 NPT Camp: RED 5 – JPN 0 (Game 4)
Sorley and Culmone netted two goals apiece to lead Red to the victory.
2019 NPT Camp: RED 1 – WHT 0 (Game 3)
Culmone scored and Larocque made 14 saves to help Red blank White.
2019 NPT Camp: WHT 15 – JPN 0 (Game 2)
McGregor drove his team to the win column with a six-point outing.
Schedule