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Danielle Serdachny

Serdachny making most of Women’s Worlds experience

A standout with Colgate University this season, Danielle Serdachny is grateful to get her first opportunity on the international stage.

Nicholas Pescod
|
April 09, 2023

It has been a heck of a season for Danielle Serdachny.

The 21-year-old Colgate University standout was the leading point-getter in NCAA women’s hockey.

Her first Team Canada goal was the overtime winner in Game 5 of the Rivalry Series in Los Angeles.

Now, Serdachny finds herself on the biggest stage of her career as the youngest member of Canada’s National Women’s Team at the 2023 IIHF Women’s World Championship in Brampton.

“Getting to wear the Team Canada jersey and kind of represent something bigger than yourself, for your country and girls in sports is just truly an honour and something I will take with me for a long time,” Serdachny says, “I think it is a really special moment for me.” 

There is no doubt the 5-foot-9 forward from Edmonton belongs on Team Canada. Serdachny had an unbelievable senior season as captain of the Raiders, tailing 71 points (25 goals and 46 assists) in 40 games, and leading the NCAA in points per game. On top of all that, she helped the Raiders capture their third straight ECAC title and earn one of eight berths in the NCAA tournament.

“It was great to win the ECAC. Obviously, it's not an easy thing to do in such a competitive conference. To come out on top of that was huge,” says Serdachny, “As far as myself this year, I kind of wanted to become more of a dual threat and to be known as a playmaker and to be looking to make those plays to my teammates.”

Serdachny was a top-three finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award — given out to the best women’s hockey player in the NCAA. Previous winners include Women’s Worlds teammates Jamie Lee Rattray and Ann-Renée Desbiens.

“It's a huge accomplishment but it goes without saying that that wouldn't be possible without my teammates, my linemates, my coaches and all their support I received from them all year,” Serdachny says. “I know it's known to be an individual award, but I'm sure everyone knows that it isn’t possible without the support. It is definitely a great honour to be recognized as one of the top female players in college hockey.”

Serdachny’s efforts at the collegiate level are a big reason why she’s in Brampton. She says in the time she’s been at Colgate, she has focused on her 200-foot game.

“It is something I’ve focused on more over these past few years and I think it helps me by being able to play a complete game and being able to play at both ends of the ice and in different situations, wherever my coaches need me,” she says. “I think it’s pretty beneficial. 

Growing up in Edmonton, Serdachny comes from a hockey family. Her father, Steve, was a skating coach with the Edmonton Oilers for a number of years, her brother Noah was a freshman this season with Colorado College, and her younger sister Brooke played AAA in Edmonton.

“My dad gets a lot of credit for the skating skills, but my mom's also been my rock … just constantly driving us to hockey and spending countless hours. I mean, she doesn't really get enough credit for that, but it goes without saying she's been my biggest supporter,” she says. “Of course, my dad has been great. Surrounded by the game constantly, whenever I need anything related to hockey, he is always there.”

A taste of Team Canada

Although Serdachny, a strong skating forward with a knack for scoring goals, is the youngest member of Team Canada, this is not the first time she’s donned the Maple Leaf.

The 21-year-old suited up for two games in the Rivalry Series and was the overtime hero in Game 5 after scoring the overtime winner against the United States in California.

"That was my first kind of taste with the senior team. So, just getting the opportunity to play alongside many girls that you've kind of looked up to for several years and just be on the same age as them and having conversations with them was just pretty incredible for me.” 

Serdachny was also a key member of Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team at the 2019 IIHF U18 Women’s World Championship, helping Canada win its first goal since 2014.

(Her cousin Maya was part of the Canadian contingent that won U18 gold at the 2023 U18 Women’s Worlds in January, bringing another world title to the family.)

“That was the first opportunity for me that I ever wore the Team Canada jersey, so I think at the time it was super exciting and it still is,” recalls Serdachny, who had three goals in five games.

That experience, Serdachny says, taught her valuable lessons such as the importance of being adaptable — something she credits for helping her get to where she is now.

“I feel like there are so many unexpected things that can come your way on or off the ice during tournaments that long,” she says. “So, I think it is just being ready to adapt to anything and trying and stay positive throughout it. It's a long tournament and sometimes things don't always go your way or as you expect them to be.

In the brief time she’s been on Team Canada, Serdachny says she quickly noticed the level of dedication her teammates bring to game preparation and the work they do on and off the ice.

“One thing that kind of stuck out to me is just how hard they work. Obviously, they’re the best in the world at what they do at hockey, and just day in and day out. They're constantly working to get better, not really satisfied with where they're at now. So, I think that's kind of really cool to see.”

Aside from the obvious goal of winning gold in Brampton, Serdachny is relishing the opportunity to play alongside such a talented and experienced group of women once again. 

“I think it's a huge learning experience. For me, just getting the opportunity to play my first world championship and just learning from some of the older and more experienced girls — even things I could take back to Colgate for my last year,” she says. “I know the goal of the tournament is to win the gold medal, but I think there are so many little things you can take from each day and learn from all these players and staff.”

For more information:

Esther Madziya
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 284-6484 

[email protected] 

Spencer Sharkey
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada

(403) 777-4567

[email protected]

Jeremy Knight
Manager, Corporate Communications
Hockey Canada

(647) 251-9738

[email protected]

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