Chatham-Kent Women’s Hockey Prospects Update
With a lot of shuffling in this edition, it’s time to again count down our top women’s hockey prospects in Chatham-Kent.
Just as we were about to crown a new top prospect in Sydnee Baker, who is tearing up the PWHL, she committed to play for the University of PEI. Likewise, the Crane twins, Halle and Jillian were moving on up our list after a steady start in Junior, but committed to Neumann University’s NCAA DIII program, erasing them from the list.
So, some new faces have emerged, in particular as we’ve expanded the list to a top 20 as it is our first of the season, and a new crop of 2002 players has stepped into eligibility. The remainder of this seasons lists will return to our typical top 15 format.
20. Watch List: We’re giving this spot to a very deserving larger group of hockey players. From Midget ‘AA’ players Shayna Daly, Kerri Carneiro, and Madison Findlater, to up and comers from the Bantam ‘AA’ level such as Hunter Gagner, Sydney Hachey, Rachel Benn, Kelsea Ellis, and Brooke Anderson, to a crop of Midget ‘A’ players on the cusp of ‘AA’, Bantam aged goalie Marandee Hunter, who is playing Midget, there are a large number of candidates who could slide in and out of this list as others make commitments. This is also your spot to tell us someone we missed. Use the comment section below, which will be kept private, to let us know about a deserving player.
19. Elizabeth Vanderveeken – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 1998 – Wallaceburg – Big bodied with a big shot, Vanderveeken struggled through a few injuries to open the season. Back on the blueline now, Vanderveeken could earn interest from a University program based on her size and potential alone.
18. Emma Doom – Chatham Bantam ‘AA’ – 2002 – Chatham – Fast and offensively skilled, Doom can show flare with the puck that many lack. As she adds a more physical element to her game, this young forward will impress even more. A first year Bantam, she has plenty of time to develop.
17. Cassie Whiteye – Chatham Bantam ‘AA’ – 2002 – Moraviantown – Returning to Chatham after time in the London ‘AA’ program, Whiteye is skilled, and shows more of a physical presence and compete level than her sister who sits atop this list. She will climb quickly having some of the greatest potential to move to a higher level quickly.
16. Lauren Edwards – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 2000 – Ridgetown – To our own fault, Edwards was omitted from our lists last season, but that won’t happen this year. She had a strong developmental year with the Kent Fillies Bantam BB, helping them to a provincial bronze medal, while also playing with the Ridgetown Royals high school squad. One of the few minor players to grab a spot on the Chatham Outlaws Midget ‘AA’ team, she’ll have the chance for another big developmental year in 2015-2016. Edwards will be counted on to add offensive finish to her 200-foot game to bolster a Midget ‘AA’ team primed to lose the bulk of its scoring next year.
15. Kirsten Horney – Chatham Bantam ‘AA’ – 2001 – Chatham – Horney, who also competes for CKSS, sees the ice better than most players her age. A heads up defender, who makes a smart first pass, and is patient with the puck, Horney will quickly develop into an offensive threat from the blueline.
14. Payton Sabourin – Chatham Bantam ‘AA’ – 2001 – Chatham – Sabourin is a tireless worker with a high compete level. Not afraid to be physical and push other girls off the puck, Sabourin, who plays high school hockey for CKSS, will likely advance to Midget ‘AA’ next season, in particular if she continues to work on her scoring skills.
13. Alison Stephens – Chatham Bantam ‘AA’ – 2001 – Chatham – Stephens is big, strong, and communicates well on the ice. A powerful skater and athlete, Stephens will become dominant as she works on the finer points of her mobility. Stephens can physically dominate in her own end, and will benefit from competing against older competition with her CKSS high school squad.
12. Megan Morehouse – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 1999 – Dresden – Down our list a few notches, not because of poor play, but because of youth emerging. Morehouse remains one of the top 1999 born players in the area. She’s seeing more playing time this year with the Chatham Midget ‘AA’ and with a diversified offensive attack, to build on a toe drag that embarrasses unsuspecting defenders, Morehouse will be an offensive force at all levels. She’s the go to this season again for her LKCS Cardinals as well.11. Mikayla Demaiter – Sarnia Midget ‘AA’ – 2000 – Chatham – In the goaltending log jam that is Chatham, Demaiter stepped outside the box to grab a coveted Midget ‘AA’ roster spot as a first year player in Sarnia. She also continues to backstop the CKSS girls team. Demaiter is reflexively quick, and always working on her game. With an ability to steal games, as with all young netminders, doing so consistently is her next step.
10. Renae Nevills – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 1998 – Chatham – Strong and mean…in a good way. Nevills can be imposing to, and annoying to opponents making her a hard defender to play against. Add to that a willingness to jump into the play, and a good shot from the point, and Nevills becomes the full package. She has improved exponentially from last season, and should be a top target of Canadian University programs out of the ‘AA’ ranks. Could have been in the PWHL this season, but tearing it up for the Outlaws and UCC.
9. Madison Lalonde – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 1998 – Blenheim – Lalonde’s play at the high school and midget level last season warranted a move up our list, but her decision to stay in Midget, and with her future path expected to take her to an Ontario college, she slid down several spots. Should Lalonde, who captains a strong Outlaws Midget squad, choose a Canadian University or US school instead of college, she would be a pleasant surprise to any OUA coach as she is gifted offensively.
8. Taylor Lockwood – Southwest Wildcats (PWHL) – 1999 – Chatham – One of the fastest, and smoothest skating players around, Lockwood has many of the tools necessary to continue to advance. Aggressive, the undersized forward needs to harness that energy in adverse situations. She already has University interest, as her skating is elite. Lockwood chose to sign with the Southwest Wildcats in the PWHL. While the team may struggle this season, the league is the most heavily scouted, and recruited loop in Ontario, and with multiple years of eligibility remaining, she’s in a good position to be recruited.7. Sydney Sabourin – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 1999 – Chatham – This is Sabourin’s season to shine. She had a strong second half last year, and can break open games when she wants to. Doing that consistently will propel her into a bigger role, in a better league, next season. She remains buried on a deep Midget ‘AA’ team, but is a go to scorer in high school where she captains CKSS’ team.
6. Jesse McPherson – Chatham Bantam ‘AA’ – 2002 – Chatham – She’ll backstop the Bantam ‘AA’ Outlaws this season as a Minor Bantam. McPherson has spent her entire life playing against boys, and now, in her first solo season of girls hockey, the competition will (unfortunately for them) face a rested netminder. One of the best in not just Chatham-Kent, but Ontario, age is the only obstacle for McPherson at this point.
5. Audra Vanroboys – Ridley College, CISAA – 2000 – Thamesville – A relative unknown to us last season, Vanroboys makes the jump onto our list after much conversation with coaches in the CISAA. One of few 2000 players to skate with Ridley College last year, Vanroboys not only played, but contributed offensively scoring 30 points in 51 games, being described as having gifted hands and vision. She will climb this list, and is potential scholarship material, drawing attention from schools already following her grade 9 year.
4. Lauren Nicholson – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 1998 – Dresden – Nicholson should be in the PWHL, but chose to stay with Chatham’s Midget ‘AA’ team again this year. That choice will limit her University options. A strong student and bullish player, Nicholson will have OUA schools lining up for her services.
3. Emma Gorski – Chatham Midget ‘AA’ – 2001 – Wallaceburg – Spending another summer backstopping the West Coast Selects in Europe, Gorski uses her size, positioning, and poise, to frustrate shooters. Her opportunity to play Midget ‘AA’ as a Bantam indicates the next stop, next season, should be the PWHL.
2. Kaitlyn Isaac – Sarnia Midget ‘AA’ – 2001 – Walpole Island – Made the jump into Midget ‘AA’ despite being Bantam aged. Also headed to Europe for another summer with the West Coast Selects, and was a member of Team Ontario at the National Aboriginal Hockey Championships. While you could guess that’s why she rocketed up our list, it’s actually her skating and puck skills that have her moving up. Next stop, PWHL.
1. Katreena Whiteye – London Devilettes (PWHL) – 1999 – Moraviantown – By seasons end, Whiteye could be one of the PWHL’s top scorers, and committed to a post secondary program. Yes, she’s only entering grade 11, but yes, she’s that good.
List Alumni – Meredith Goldhawk (Windsor Lancers, OUA), Zoe Ellis (Windsor Lancers, OUA), Rachael Tricker (Fanshawe Falcons, OCCCR), Sydney Authier (Ryerson Rams, OUA), Sydnee Baker (UPEI Panthers, AUS), Jillian Crane (Neumann Knights, NCAA), Halle Crane (Neumann Knights, NCAA).