Field Hockey Canada > Resilient Junior Women's Team faces world's best, emerges stronger from Junior World Cup

Building Blocks for Success: Team Canada turns Junior World Cup challenge into development opportunities

Canada, ranked 18th in the world junior rankings, faced a challenging journey at the FIH Women’s Hockey Junior World Cup. Placed in a deadly initial pool with Germany (#3), India (#5), and Belgium (#11), the Canadian team, labeled as underdogs, showcased resilience throughout the tournament. Comprising 17 athletes from 15 universities and colleges across North America, the team navigated the logistical challenge of limited training time together.


Eight athletes were new to this group since the Pan American Championships, meaning they were also new to the intensity and speed of international hockey. Several even met for the first time at the airport, exemplifying the diverse nature of the squad. Despite finishing winless, Canada, under the guidance of Coach Jenn Beagan, and a terrific coaching staff, utilized the tournament as a valuable learning experience and an opportunity for daily self-improvement. Notable performances included a tight shootout loss against Zimbabwe and scoring three goals against. an always-strong New Zealand team.

The coaching staff embraced the challenges on the field, turning the event into a day-by-day development and experience opportunity. As the team returns home, they carry an enhanced understanding of the speed of international play, poised to contribute to their respective training environments. Head Coach, Beagan, said she was proud of how the team continued to fight day-by-day and was excited to take on the challenge each day.

“I think we told the team every day that ‘today is going to be the hardest thing you’ve ever done,’ and every day they showed up with determination, grit and resilience.
I celebrate them all for the willingness to trust in our staff, and the concepts we were teaching and to just be comfortable being outside their comfort zone. In an event that was challenging at every turn, the lessons we bring home will serve these athletes for the rest of their lives, on and off the field.”

Canada battles Belgium in the opening match at the Junior World Cup. Photos/FIH World Sport Pics

Looking ahead, Canada, with a core returning, gears up for the Junior Pan American Championships in Surrey, BC in the summer of 2024. The growing experience and chemistry gained from the 2023 Pan American Championships and the Junior World Cup will be leveraged in showcasing their best performance during the World Cup qualifier in Surrey in July 2024. Beagan said the team is eager to show more, every time they step on the field.

“I think many of these athletes left Chile feeling like they had more to prove and wanting to play just one more game as things were starting to click and come together for us at the end,” Beagan said. “I’m looking forward to the next few months to build on that progress and looking forward to JPAC 2024 I know we have a core group of returning athletes that are inspired by what they learned, and saw in Chile and are motivated compete again at this level.”


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