Anika Block skates up the ice in a game last season. (Photo courtesy Kim Block)

Top tier girls Island hockey team looking to best last season’s performance

The team boasts best high school female hockey players on the Island

There are a lot of hockey teams on Vancouver Island, but only one top tier female team.

The Victoria Island Seals midget AAA team is back and looking to better their second-place regular season B.C. conference finish last year.

The Seals graduated four players last season, but forward Anika Block, a Grade 12 student at Belmont Secondary school, said the team has strong returning players and some young new talent that could make them unstoppable.

“This year our team has a lot of potential to go even further, do as well as we did last year, if not even better,” she said. “It has a really good core, but the new girls have great potential so they will really help our team.”

Block is in her third season with the team and hopes to be a strong leader on and off the ice this season. She is a quiet leader off the ice, but during practices and games she likes to control the tempo and talk her teammates through the game when she’s on the bench.

An Island-wide team, the Seals practice at rinks in Duncan, Nanaimo and Shawnigan Lake. Block is a Highlands resident and carpools with her teammates who live on the West Shore, which means spending lots of time in the car together, talking, napping and doing homework.

“We definitely spend most of our time together, even [outside] of hockey. Our whole team is a great group of friends,” she said.

The bond her teammates share is another reason why she feels they will be successful this season.

“I love my team. They are all super supportive of each other, the coach too, he’s awesome. He’s super supportive, he really knows how to get the team going,” Block said.

The team plays about 50 games in a season, including travelling to four tournaments across Canada and the U.S. to play top competition. Block said she loves travelling to play, experiencing the hockey culture in different cities, and seeing the level of talent across North America.

Last year the Seals lost in the best-of-three semifinals in the B.C. conference and missed out on the opportunity to go to nationals. Only the top team in B.C. punches a ticket to nationals and Block believes the Seals are that team this year.

After the Seals lost in the playoffs last season they took a one-month break and then got back to work. The core group played spring hockey with the Seals, and practices and training started in late July.

The Seals played their first exhibition game Sept. 1 after the Gazette went to print.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

lindsey.horsting@goldstream gazette.com

Just Posted

Local tongue-in-cheek opportunists flog snow huts

‘Executive’ and ‘eco-friendly’ one-bedrooms pop up on Craigslist and Used Victoria

Province urges backcountry adventurers to stay safe this weekend

Search and rescue responded to 28 incidents last Family Day weekend

Snow storms prompt reminders to prepare for emergencies

Province reminds public of essential supplies

Langford could soon be seeing its first retail cannabis store

Clarity Cannabis BC Ltd. gets province’s approval

West Shore fundraiser serves up hope for kids with food allergies

Proceeds assist Oral Immunotherapy Research Program at BC Children’s Hospital

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

B.C. couple attacked with acid, slashed with knife in Vietnam

Warning, graphic images: Man has burns on 80 per cent of his body, slashed with knife

Northern B.C. First Nation clan says ancient tools found at pipeline work site

Archeologists from the Smithsonian Institute estimate one of the stones found dates back up to 3500 years

Names keep adding to vaccine petition started by B.C. mom

Maple Ridge mom started campaign to make vaccination a condition of attending school

Wilson-Raybould resignation stokes anger, frustration within veterans community

Liberals have had three veterans-affairs ministers — Kent Hehr, Seamus O’Regan and Wilson-Raybould

Most Read