Raiders captain Vancouver bound
Hockey: Kaylin Snodgrass commits to UBC
Wednesday, Jan 22, 2014 06:00 am
A girl from the heart of ranching country will play her hockey on the west coast when her career with the Highwood Raiders ends at the close of this season.
The University of British Columbia (UBC) Thunderbirds announced Midget AAA Raiders captain Kaylin Snodgrass will attend the Vancouver school in the fall of 2014.
She’s an ideal fit for the T’Birds, according to UBC head coach Graham Thomas.
“We see Kaylin fitting in nicely with our current defensive group,” said Thomas in a Dec. 29 press release. “Kaylin will be counted on to bring her strong defensive positioning, work ethic, compete level and to utilize her strong heads up passing skills. We are excited to work with Kaylin to keep inspiring her passion and deliberate focus in practice to find that top level we know she is capable of achieving.”
The 17-year-old Longview-area resident caught the eye of the UBC brass while playing at the 2012 Mac’s tournament in Calgary.
“Mr. Thomas saw me play at last year’s Mac’s,” Snodgrass said during a break in the 2013 tournament. “Our assistant coach Kayla McDougall then talked to him and through that he started talking to me.”
Snodgrass visited UBC last spring and fell in love in what she called “a wonderful campus.”
It also didn’t hurt the school has a good reputation both academically and on the ice.
“Their hockey team is really great and their academics and programs are outstanding,” said the Grade 12 student at Notre Dame Collegiate in High River.
Academics are important to the Notre Dame Collegiate (NDC) senior.
Her marks are nearing the 90 per cent mark at NDC and she has achieved honours with distinction at the school for the past three years.
The T’Birds are also in first-place in the Canada West Universities Athletic Association and are the fifth-ranked squad in the country.
Although she committed to UBC during the summer of 2013, the announcement was not made until just before the start of this year’s Mac’s.
Snodgrass said receiving a scholarship early in the season took some of the worry about her future. However, it wasn’t about to compromise her commitment and effort to the Raiders.
“It did take the pressure off but at the same time I didn’t want to disappoint him (Thomas) and let my play drop off this year,” she said.
Snodgrass also didn’t want to let down her teammates.
She hasn’t disappointed at all in either her play or leadership.
She is wearing the ‘C’ on the Raiders jersey for the second-straight year.
She has one goal and 13 assists while shoring up the blueline for the Raiders who are in first place in the South Division of the Alberta Major Midget Female Hockey League.
Snodgrass brings smarts and brawn to the ice, according to Raiders head coach Jason Seper.
“Kaylin is a strong, steady defenceman who has a ton of skill,” Seper said.
“Her hockey IQ is also really high. As well, her leadership throughout the year has been a tremendous contribution.”
The Raiders boss is confident Snodgrass can play at the university level.
“The next level is really a big step,” Seper noted, “but Kaylin may be the most skilled defenceman in the league.”
It was a big month for the graduating members of the Raiders as Snodgrass’ teammate and alternate captain Hannah Olenyk also locked up her post-secondary home.
The skilled winger out of Cochrane committed to the University of Alberta Pandas for the 2014 season.
The Raiders remained in first place in the South after tying the Red Deer Chiefs 3-3 on Sunday.
The Raiders are on the road this weekend with stops in Edmonton and Sherwood Park.
Highwood’s next home game is Feb. 1 when it hosts the Lethbridge Steeler at 4:45 p.m. at the Scott Seaman Sports Arena in Davisburg.
For more information about the Raiders and the Alberta Major league go to www.ammfhl-hockey.ca