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Islander named top forward at women’s U18 national hockey championship

Courtenay’s Morgan Jackson finished as the second-highest scorer on her way to a bronze medal

On Nov. 11, Morgan Jackson proudly returned home, adorned with the bronze medal she earned with her team at the 2023 Nationals Women’s U18 Hockey Championship held in Dawson Creek.

Achieving the second-highest score with 10 points, Jackson was recognized as the tournament’s top forward.

The 20-member squad kicked off the eight-team tournament, which took place from Nov. 5-11, with victories against the Ontario Blue (4-2) and Manitoba (4-2). Although they faced a setback in their third game against the Ontario Red (6-4), the team rebounded with a win against Saskatchewan (5-3) in their fourth match. Despite a loss in the semifinal against Quebec (7-3), Jackson and her team secured a bronze medal by defeating Alberta, 3-1 in the third-place game.

More than a week after the championship, the forward looks back on her participation in the tournament, emphasizing the enjoyable team experience.

“I was super excited to play with this team and everyone was super friendly,” said Jackson. “I think winning bronze made it even better because our team was so close that it (strengthened our) bond.

“It was so fun playing with this team that I really played to the best I could and played with a lot of confidence.”

Back to the Island, the Grade 12 student at Shawnigan Lake School now focuses on completing her senior year before taking off to the prestigious Northeastern University, located in Boston, to which she committed earlier this month.

After receiving numerous invitations since June, Jackson said she settled for Northeastern because of its strong sports legacy and for being home to one of the best Division 1 female hockey clubs in the nation.

“We set up a call with the (university) and I really like talking to the coach,” said Jackson. “(Following this meeting) we set up an official visit to Northeastern. I chose this university because of the campus and how great its hockey program is.”

Unsure of what she wants to study at this point, whether it’s business or sciences, the 17-year-old captain has grand goals in mind for the upcoming years.

“I played on Canada’s U18 team last year and I’m hoping to play on it this year in January for the world championships in Switzerland,” said Jackson. “But my long-term goal would definitely be to make the U22 national team and then the national team.”

Besides representing Canada on the world stage, Jackson also contemplates the idea of playing professionally for the new Professional Women’s Hockey League (PWHL) following her graduation.

READ MORE: Courtenay-raised hockey player wins world gold

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Olivier Laurin

About the Author: Olivier Laurin

I’m a bilingual multimedia journalist from Montréal who began my journalistic journey on Vancouver Island with The Comox Valley Record in 2023.
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