NHL

Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Oly hockey hopeful loving the stress

Winnipeg's Bram has eye on women's team

  • Print

THE stress is both enormous and constant. The days can be long and gruelling and there is either heartache or pure joy at the end of the process.

And Bailey Bram -- one of four Manitobans still in the fight for spots on the Canadian women's Olympic hockey team -- is loving absolutely every second of it.

"Oh yeah... it's extremely stressful," said Bram, a proud product of Ste. Anne and Balmoral Hall, via telephone from the national team's base in Calgary. "But it's also kinda cool that every day you know you have to come and leave everything on the ice and give it your all.

"You just never know when that cut is coming, when the coaches are watching you... every day you have to give your best. I think it's great because all these girls are working so hard it should make us that much better for Sochi."

Bram, along with Jocelyne Larocque of Ste. Anne, Waterhen's Brigette Lacquette and Jenelle Kohanchuk of Winnipeg, has been living in Calgary full-time since early August as part of Hockey Canada's all-in approach to building the women's team.

They head to Sochi, Russia, this Sunday for an exhibition tournament and will play in the 4 Nations Cup in Lake Placid, N.Y., in November as well as exhibition tilts against the United States and close to 30 games against AAA boys teams from the Alberta Midget Hockey League.

The official Olympic roster likely won't be announced until December, meaning a handful of the players sweating and toiling every day won't be going to Sochi in February.

"I try not to think about the cuts and play as I would on every other team and try to get comfortable," said Bram. "I know I have a lot of friends and family who are supportive, and if I ever need somebody to talk to they are there for me. All I can do is take it day by day and try not to jump too far ahead of myself.

"It's the experience of a lifetime being here right now."

Bram is drawing on her experience with the national team in the last two world championships as proof -- both to herself and the coaching staff -- that she belongs on a roster that still includes 13 players who suited up for Canada at the Olympics in 2010.

"It definitely helps get you a little more comfortable and also helps with the confidence, which is probably one of the most important things at this level because there are so many girls who can play here," said Bram. "That's an essential part: having the confidence and belief in yourself to do it and that comes with time. I'm getting close to being able to play without thinking about it or worrying about screwing up or what the vets might be thinking. It takes a long time, but it's coming around.

"Last night I was thinking about it. It's like, 'This is pretty cool. How many people get the chance to go to Russia to play in a hockey tournament?' That's pretty big. I mean, some time this week we're supposed to have a chance to meet the men's team... Sidney Crosby and Jonathan Toews... that's pretty surreal."

ed.tait@freepress.mb.ca Twitter: @WFPEdTait

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 27, 2013 D4

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

WRHA says discrimination contributed to Brian Sinclair's death

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A Canada goose protects her nest full of eggs Monday on campus at the University of Manitoba- Standup photo- Apr 30, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A golfer looks for his ball in a water trap at John Blumberg Golf Course Friday afternoon as geese and goslings run for safety- See Joe Bryksa’s 30 day goose challenge- Day 24– June 15, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who should get more playing time in Jets net?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google