GUYSBOROUGH – Not everyone gets to be part of a history-making hockey team, let alone have that experience while they are still in elementary school, but Emily Hart of Guysborough had just such an experience on the weekend of March 26. Hart, a Grade 6 student at Chedabucto Education Centre, plays right wing for the Pictou County Subway Selects in the top female division, Peewee Double A and was on the ice for an historic Provincial Championship game, a game that went to seven overtime periods; setting a Hockey Nova Scotia (HNS) record for the length of a contest. Hart spoke to The Journal about the game and about her passion for hockey last weekend.
Hart is in her first season with the Pictou County Subway Selects and was drawn to hockey after discovering some bags of old hockey gear that belonged to her father. At the time, she said, “I did not know what any of it was.” From that curious beginning, Hart took lessons in power skating skills which eventually led to playing hockey and being part of a history making hockey game.
The Pictou County Subway Selects had a good season this year according to Hart but the one team that always tested their metal was the TASA Ducks from Tantallon. And it was this team that The Selects went up against for the provincial championship after making it to the top of the tournament. Hart described the match up with intensity, “All year we’ve been neck and neck with them but they’ve always won in a shoot out or over time.”
The game started with a goal for The Selects followed in the second period with a goal for TASA. Hart said, “That kind of woke us up; we’re at provincials now and we’ve got to win this...We went into over time, and another over time, and another over time; it was seven over times. Our Captain actually passed out and that was when Nova Scotia Hockey said, ‘Ok, we have to do something about this.’ So they stopped the game at the end of the seventh over time.”
At first the coaches and a representative from Nova Scotia Hockey thought they would reschedule the game for the sake of the safety of the players but after further consideration it was decided that the teams would share the win and end the season as co-champions. “Everyone was putting their hearts into the game; they wanted it really bad. I have to give that to both teams,” said Hart although she admits that personally she would have liked to have won against TASA.
A ceremony is planned to award both the TASA Ducks and the Pictou County Subway Selects with gold medals, a banner and rings. “We’re going to have an hour of ice time to talk with the other team to see what they were thinking while the game was going on and to have a little fun,” said Hart.
When asked what she thought during the game, which lasted approximately five hours, Hart said, “All I was doing was working my hardest, gave everything I got. I couldn’t make a mistake.”
Hart said she’s happy with the outcome of the game because she agrees that all the players should be acknowledged for their dedication and commitment to the game. “I don’t think the teams would have been happy if only one team won; it would have been disappointing after all the effort we put in.”
“It’s definitely going to be something to remember,” said Hart of the history making game. “It’s pretty exciting...we worked so hard. When we found out there would be co-champions and that we made Nova Scotia history; it was a shock...It was an honour to be part of that team and that game.”
Hart plans to continue playing hockey, “It’s my passion,” she said. She looks to Hayley Wickenheiser as a mentor and has done her heritage fair project on the famous Canadian hockey player this year. Some day, another Guysborough student may do a project on this up and coming hockey player. She certainly has a hockey heart.