The Canadian men’s hockey game may have grabbed national attention on Sunday morning, but the real thriller took place three days earlier. The Canadian women’s team beat the U.S., its bitter rival in a historically two-horse tournament, to win gold.
While it was a game to make all Canadians proud, that pride is felt strongly here at Ryerson.
At head coach Kevin Dineen’s side was assistant coach Lisa Haley, who is also the head coach for the Ryerson Rams women’s hockey team. Haley has missed the 2013-14 Rams season so far to focus on the national team, a decision hard to refute as she returns to Canada with an Olympic gold medal on her resumé.
The Canadian team was a group in transition, with coaching changes and a new captain. In instances like this, leadership in the midst of chaos is essential to a team’s success. The efforts of Dineen, Haley, and the rest of the coaching staff cannot be overlooked in a situation that made the best out of a worst-case scenario.
Obviously Ryerson’s hockey program misses a mind like Haley’s. The team’s record was a disappointing 5-19 in OUA play this season without her. But the big-game experience she comes with, along with the experience of working with an ex-NHL coach like Dineen, means her return to the Rams is a sign of better things to come.
This story was first published in The Ryersonian, a weekly newspaper produced by the Ryerson School of Journalism, on February 26, 2014.