Women’s Hockey is flying in the Canadian Armed Forces
By Derek Brown
With 40 females trying out for the 2018 regional roster the program was in full flight and looking strong to repeat as Ontario Regional Champions for a second year in a row at CFB Borden 25-28 Jan 2018. Unfortunately, a condensed schedule with 5 games in 48 hours and injuries to key players proved to be too much for the Trenton Flyers this year and they went on to lose 3-2 in overtime of the second semi-final.
The early end to the 2018 season gave the team and the coach time to reflect on where they came from just a short 18 months before and a chance to recharge and return in the fall with a new purpose and a drive to prove the validity of the program once more. The Regional Championship in 2019 was on home turf at CFB Trenton. The stage was set for the team to prove themselves and show the region that the Women Flyers were a force to be reckoned with. That was just what they did, they would come to call themselves the Beast of the tournament, easily handling all competition and dismantling the former foe from Petawawa, in the finals with a score of 6-1. By winning the Regional Tournament the team earned the right to represent Ontario at the National Championships in Edmonton, Alberta.
The National Championships in 2019 proved to be a battle for the team, as they struggled to score dropping all three round robin games, and finishing fourth. The team had to play the tournament favourites from Atlantic Canada in the semi-finals. Backed by an unreal performance by their starting goalie Amanda Whalen, the flyers would prevail with a 1-0 win. This gave them a chance to play for the national title once again. They faced the always strong Quebec team in the final. Once again the Flyers found all too familiar struggles and only put up a single goal in the final. It wasn’t enough on this day to stop the offensive power house from Quebec, once again the flyers settled for the second best team in the country.
Unfortunately, the team saw a change in 2020 with Coach Brown having to step away for the season due to family reasons. But as the flyers always do, they would still come back strong under new leadership, and show up to the 2020 regionals and be the team to beat at the championship. The trend would continue through and the Flyers would lose in the final against a former Trenton goalie who would backstop her new Kingston team to the 3-2 overtime win. Little did the team know at that time that it would be the last hockey they would play for over a year due to COVID.
There is good news on the horizon though for the Trenton Flyers women’s program Coach Brown plans to return to the team whenever they get the all clear to resume with CAF sports. The program will continue to grow no matter what the delay is the love for the sport is to strong too keep these amazing women away for too long.