Taking on Team China

The University of Waterloo will play host to a very special guest Nov. 16, when the Chinese international women’s hockey team will face off against our own Warriors in exhibitional play. The Warriors hosted Team China previously in 2009–10.

The event will kick off International Education Week at the University of Waterloo. Gates will open at 1:30 p.m. with special souvenir commemorative pucks for the first 100 fans. Puck drop is set for 2:30 p.m..

Yes, this is the same Team China you may recall having watched during the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics where they finished seventh. Unfortunately, they failed to qualify for the Sochi Olympics this past February and were replaced by the Japanese team on the bill.

Team China has been making their rounds around Southern Ontario, facing off against a variety of teams, though their tour started off south of the border on Sept. 20 as they took on the Quinnipiac University Bobcats of Connecticut in an 8–0 loss.

The Chinese team carries a 1–5 record during their tour, with seven more games to play.

While a majority of their opponents are Midget AA or Intermediate AA teams (many of which the Warriors play exhibition games against), they will face off against a total of three OUA teams including the Warriors. They played the Western University Mustangs to a 4–1 loss on Oct. 19 and will finish off their North American tour with the Ryerson Rams on Dec. 5.

All of Team China’s players hail from the cities of Harbin and Qiqihar of the Heilongjiang province, China’s most northeast province, with one exception, Guan Yingying, from Jilin City, Jilin, just south of Heilongjiang. These cities range anywhere from 10–17 hours away from the capital Beijing.

Harbin carries with it some significance to the women’s hockey game as it’s the city where the Winter Universiade women’s hockey tournament was established in 2009. This year the 27th biennial tournament will be held in Grenada, Spain, with China competing in Pool B. Canada’s team is made up of all CIS players and will look to maintain a perfect 20–0 record in Pool A.