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Fifteen Manitobans have been invited by Hockey Canada as part of a list of 109 female players identified for a strength and conditioning camp that will take place from May 25-30 at the University of Calgary.

Invitations were made based on evaluations done throughout the 2009-10 season by Hockey Canada's regional scouts and the coaching staffs of Canada's national women's team, under-22 team and under-18 team. Those who were chosen to attend the off-ice camp were evaluated while they played with their club teams in-season, as well as at various national camps and events.

The following Manitobans will be attending the camp: Goaltender Abby Ryplanski (Winnipeg); Defencemen Brigette Lacquette (Waterhen), Brooklyn Langois (Steinbach), Jocelyne Larocque (Ste. Anne), Alexis Woloschuk (Winnipeg); Forwards Christine Bestland (Brunkild), Bailey and Shelby Bram (Ste. Anne), Meghan Dufault (Winnipeg), Kristine Grenier (St. Leon), Chelsea Karpenko (Winnipeg), Janelle Kohanchuk (Winnipeg).

Manitobans invited but unable to attend the camp are: defencemen Rebecca Hewett (Oak Bluff), Caitlin MacDonald (Winnipeg); forward Laura Fridfinnson (Arborg).

The 21 members of Canada's Olympic roster, as well as any senior program athletes who have been centralized with the national team more than once, are not required to attend the camp.

The five-day camp is considered a first step in identifying those who could be in the running to represent Canada at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.

There was plenty of gold, silver and bronze in the foothills city of Airdrie, Alta., last weekend for Manitobans competing at the Trampoline and Tumbling Western Canada Cup.

Kelsey Berkowski of Team Manitoba won gold in the double mini trampoline provincial B competition. Other gold medals went to Samantha Hancox of the Springers Gym Club in the double mini trampoline provincial C event; Sarah Chan (Team Manitoba) in the provincial B trampoline and Team Manitoba's Chelsey Froese in the provincial C tumbling. Froese also won a bronze medal in the double mini provincial B trampoline.

Aimee Ayre of the Panthers Gym Club won silver in the double mini provincial C trampoline.

The other bronze medal was won in the tumbling team event by Team Manitoba (Kaitlin Fritz, Justine Friesen, Valerie Beynon, Natasha Jenkyns).

Mary Ellen Clarke of Neepawa has been recognized as among Canada's most dedicated behind-the-scenes Local Hockey Leaders as part of the annual RBC Local Hockey Leaders Program.

The award, presented by RBC Insurance, with support from Hockey Canada and the Hockey Hall of Fame recognizes 14 winners, each representing a Hockey Canada branch from Fort Simpson, NWT, to Durrell, N.L.

The Local Hockey Leaders receive $10,000 towards a registered hockey cause in their community and a signed Team Canada jersey. The winners will also be flown to Toronto for a special ceremony on June 16, where their efforts will be recognized in a permanent display at the Hockey Hall of Fame. In addition, a banner recognizing their achievement will be raised in their local arena.

"Hockey is a big part of our community, and we are so proud of our Neepawa Natives," wrote Neepawa's Ryan McLaughlin in a letter nominating Clark. "Without Mary Ellen, our program would definitely not be successful and it would be very tough for junior hockey to continue in Neepawa."

The best junior track and field talent in the country will be here in 2011 and 2012, as Athletics Canada has awarded Winnipeg the Canadian Junior Track and Field Championships. The 2011 event will be held July 8-10 at the University of Manitoba Stadium.

"Our track and field community is looking forward to presenting a quality national championship, and it will provide us with the opportunity to showcase some of our great young talent," said Rob Guy, managing director of Athletics Manitoba, in a release.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 13, 2010 C6

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