Young players look forward to seeing world’s best
At age 13, Willa Evans of Truro and Baillie Griffon of East Mountain are just slightly older than Jill Saulnier and Blayre Turnbull were when they watched the 2004 championships being played in Halifax.
Both girls began playing hockey at age five and are currently teammates with the Fundy Highland Bantam AA Subway Selects team out of Pictou County.
They have both also benefited in the past from Turnbull’s experience during hockey schools she helped conduct and both were on hand to hear Turnbull and Saulnier speak during the announcement at the RECC.
They also are eagerly looking forward to attending the games in 2020.
“I think this event will be a great experience for young girls to learn that hard work pays off,” Griffon said.
That will certainly be amplified if Turnbull and Saulnier both make the 2020 national team other young female players can get to see two Nova Scotian women representing their country and playing at an international level.
“It is going to be a great experience for girls’ hockey and Nova Scotia,” Evans added. “Because girls’ hockey is just getting started and I think it is going to be a great opportunity to kickstart girls’ hockey for younger girls.”
Thinking back to the 2004 games, Saulnier said that is precisely how she and Turnbull felt watching their mentors of the day collecting their gold medals.
“I think mainly because we saw just how good the women could be,” she said.
“Growing up in Nova scotia we weren’t really exposed to that. So for us to actually witness that and see how good the world-class athletes actually are and to show us that dream was kind of available to chase if you wanted to, it was just great exposure for us.”