Abbotsford’s Alex Allan is hoping to help Team B.C. on the bronze she helped them win last year.

Abbotsford’s Alex Allan is hoping to help Team B.C. on the bronze she helped them win last year.

Abbotsford’s Allan leading the charge for Team B.C.

Local product aiming to help U18 club improve on bronze last year

For the second straight year, Abbotsford’s Alex Allan is representing the province at the National Women’s U18 Championship event.

The Grade 12 St. John Brebeuf student is looking to help Team B.C. build off last year’s bronze medal performance, which was the first medal the province has earned at the tournament in over a decade.

Allan contributed with three goals in five games last year, and she said she believes Team B.C. can take that next step.

“We want to win gold and I think we have a good shot at that this year,” he said.

The team’s potential was proven last month, as they beat both the Chinese national team and the UBC Thunderbirds during exhibition games as part of their training camp.

“Beating UBC was a big accomplishment for us so if we can beat them, who knows what we can do,” Allan said.

The ice rink has been a part of Allan’s life from a very young age. She began with ringette, and then played boys hockey in both Aldergrove and Abbotsford until about three years ago when she moved to girls hockey. She said her experience playing against both genders helped develop a unique set of skills.

“Playing boys hockey it was a faster game and it helped me become more physical,” she said. “Girls is more mental and you have to be smarter with the puck.”

Her strong play in both boys and girls hockey began attracting attention all across the province a few years ago. She played for the elite Team Pacific girls team for spring hockey for three years, and then played one year of major midget with the Greater Vancouver Comets. From there, she signed with the Richmond-based Pacific Steelers team out of the Junior Women’s Hockey League.

The Steelers are essentially a Junior A program and travel across North America twice a month to play against some of the top female hockey programs. Allan said her time with the Steelers has improved her skill set.

“I just love it,” she said of her time with the Steelers. “I look forward to every practice and we’re all so close on the team. The time there has really helped me develop as a player.”

Allan, who is an assistant captain and plays defence on the Steelers, has also secured a hockey scholarship to Boston University. She heads to the school next fall, and will be studying sciences with the eventual goal to become a doctor.

“I love being in a city and the girls and coaches there were amazing when I went for a visit,” she said. “I’m also very academically driven and the science program is very good. I’m just excited for everything that will happen next year.”

But first up is a trip to Quebec City and the battle to bring a gold medal back to B.C.

The event kicks off on Nov. 1, with B.C. opening against Saskatchewan. B.C. takes on Manitoba on Nov. 2, and then ends the preliminary round against the host Quebec team on Nov. 3. The gold medal is set to be awarded on Nov. 5.