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The Select 15 Girls Take the Stage

By frederick61, 06/16/13, 1:45AM CDT


Roster for Sundays game between the Black team and the Yellow team. Three games will be played Sunday at Minnesota Hockey’s Girls Select 15 camp as part of a week long evaluation process with the eventual goal the USA Women’s Olympic team.

With the Boy’s Select 15 Summer Camp barely over, the Girls Select 15 Summer Camp kicks in this week.  A 100 or so 15 year old girls from all over the state will converge on the St. Cloud Campus to be evaluated for Minnesota’s Girls 2013 Select 15 team.  Twenty or so players attending the camp will be selected to be on the team; the Girls selected will return to the St. Cloud State Campus for a USA Hockey Select 15 National Camp that is being held July 19-26.

Unlike the boys, for most of players playing this week in St. Cloud, it is all about Olympic Hockey.

With pro hockey over taking the USA Men’s Olympic team, USA Hockey’s only bona fide top level team development is the USA Women’s Hockey team. The boys U17 through U20 USA select teams are more about individual exposure and the opportunity to play international competition at a young age; the older USA men’s teams become dominated by proven pro hockey players.

For these 15 year olds, the Minnesota Hockey’s St. Cloud camp is focused on Olympic Team development.  And what most people do not realize is that July and the St. Cloud State campus is all about Women’s Olympic Hockey.  Girls’ Select 17 (1996) and Girls’ Select 16 (1997) Player Development Camps will be held July 10-16; Girls’ Select 15 (1998) and Girls’ Select 14 (1999) Player Development Camps will be held July 19-25.  Out of these camps will emerge players targeted for USA National and Olympic teams.

The Minnesota Select 15 Summer Camp opens the evaluation process this year.

The players attending those camps know that the ultimate goal is the Olympics. This February, that goal will be realized for some Minnesota players who have gone through the process as the Olympic team comes together and takes the national spotlight.

For the 100 or so 15-year old players at the St. Cloud camp this week, this is the first step on a path to making that Olympic team and to be in a February spotlight 4 or 8 years from now.

And one of the paths is through Minnesota Hockey’s Select 15 program.  YHH covered last year’s USA Hockey’s U18 and U22 teams camps held at the Super Rink in Blaine.  Their stories can be read on this site.  The U18 team had eight Minnesota players on their roster.  The U22 team had five Minnesota players on their roster.

Currently 5 Minnesota players of the 41 players trying out for this year’s Women’s National team come from Minnesota.  Eight Minnesota Gophers are part of the 41 players being evaluated for the National team.  One of the players is Jincy Dunne who is 16 (1997) year old player from Missouri.

Three Minnesota players played on the 2010 Olympic team.

In some sense, traveling the path to potential Olympic gold is like the loneliness of a long distance runner running a marathon.  You are running among race watchers who as you pass mile after mile give off the feeling of “why are you doing this”; except the process is “year after year” long.

Whether male or female, all players have to answer that question when it comes to serious hockey (beyond high school).  But this week at St. Cloud, it is a test-the first of many-as the players take the ice.

Sunday, three games open the camp evaluation process.  There are six teams at the camp, all named after the color of their jerseys.  Unlike the boy’s select 15, the girls teams are dominated by players who have had varsity experience.  Only 22 players come from association U14 teams.  The rest are players from Shattuck or players with Varsity experience.

YHH will be covering the Girl’s Select 15 Summer Camp this week and will post the final select 15 team.  YHH will also be covering the July Camps.

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