The 2005/06 version of the Calgary RATH can legitimately be called the young guns with an average player age of 21. Following last season, the two oldest members of RATH Lisa Brown and Sherra Keogan elected to retire. Coach Hutchison says ‘ these veterans will be sadly missed as they were great leaders and effective scorers but they have been replaced with youth and speed creating different team dynamics.’ The veterans were replaced with first year open players Marie-Eve D’aoust, Laura Mowat and Lyndsay Veale. These young guns did very well in the season opening 8-0 victory over Edmonton Edge combining for a total of 8 points. Laura Mowat comment about her first game in the NRL was “I was very nervous and excited all at the same time. Nervous because it was a new level for me, excited because it’s what I LOVE to do.”
Youth was also added to the goaltending position with Whitney Bryant joining veterans Stacey McNichol and Shannon Hutchison. Shannon now the oldest player on the team at age 24 says ‘It’s a bit strange having the team make “old people” jokes about me. When I joined the team most players were over the age of 22 and a couple of years ago I was one of the youngest players. However it is great to see new players coming in to add a lot of excitement to the team. We’ll just see if they can keep up to me on the teams run!”
The upcoming NRL season should be interesting for team RATH as the young guns work hard towards achieving their objective to be in Montreal in April 2006.