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Westlock native to head Team Alberta U18 female hockey team

Brett Wold, 32, is currently a hockey instructor at the Notre Dame Hockey Academy in Red Deer
WES - Brett Wold IMG-1369
Westlock-native Brett Wold has been named head coach of the Team Alberta U18 female hockey team that will compete at the 2023 Canada Winter Games in Prince Edward Island. Wold is currently an instructor at the Notre Dame Hockey Academy in Red Deer.

WESTLOCK – Westlock-native Brett Wold continues to climb the ranks of the hockey world and will be the head coach of the Team Alberta U18 female hockey team at the 2023 Canada Winter Games in Prince Edward Island.

Wold, along with the rest of the coaching staff that includes assistants Ally Bendfeld and Evan Vossen, was announced by Hockey Alberta June 1. This is the second time Wold has coached on the national stage as he was an assistant on the gold-medal winning 2019 U18 Women’s national championship team — that club was coached by Kendall Newell, who’s director of hockey operations for the 2023 team. The rest of the staff includes video coach Jessie Olfert, goaltending coach Marlène Boissonnault and apprentice coach Shanya Shwetz.

Wold, who’s also a hockey instructor at the Notre Dame Hockey Academy in Red Deer, has spent the last four years as the head coach of the U18 ‘AAA’ Red Deer Sutter Fund Chiefs and won the Alberta Female Hockey League’s coach of the year award last season. The 32-year-old married father of two was humbled by the announcement and said it’s an honour and a “privilege” to be named head coach.

“I applied for it and you hope for the best, but you’re never sure. It was quite the news to get, it’s pretty exciting to get your name called,” he said June 7.

Wold, who coached one year at the midget ‘AAA’ boys level before moving to the girls side, said “he’d never switch back as it’s been a great experience so far.”

“I felt like I was going to get more an opportunity to coach and prove myself,” he said. “Honestly, I used to push for the next thing and try to get to the next level. But for the last couple of years, I’ve been really content and I’m going to enjoy the moment and appreciate this opportunity. And whatever happens from it, happens.”

With the Games only eight months away, Wold and his coaching staff will get cracking soon as the first camp is slated to run July 12-17 in Red Deer. That event will include the Top 68 players in the province, who’ll then be paired down to 30 before final cuts are made later in the year. Wold said while the main goal will be to defend the gold medal that they won back in 2019, they want to make sure “that these girls develop and they become better people on and off the ice.”

“The time is going to burn by fast and we don’t get a lot of interaction with the kids either. We only really get this July camp and then a few weekends leading up,” said Wold. “They’re with their club teams during the season, so we’re going to focus on good habits to have like hard work, effort and backchecking. Our mindset with the girls is just to stay focused on the simple things and have fun.”

Wold played his minor hockey in Westlock, then played a season with the NCAA Div. 3 for the University of Wisconsin-Superior Yellowjackets and two years with the Red Deer College Kings in the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference, where he earned a Bachelors of Education degree.

Looking back on his minor hockey career, Wold singled out coaches Ken Schuster, Terry Kloberdanz, Bryan Carnegie and Rob Waldner for helping him to get to where he is today.

“I wouldn’t be where I am without those guys volunteering their time and helping shape me into the person I am today,” said Wold. “Those were my only four coaches from novice to midget. They were fantastic and to volunteer their time, it was pretty important not only to me, but all the kids they were involved with over the years.”

George Blais,

George Blais

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