2021 22 nwu18t olivia muhn

Leading the way for the next gen

Motivating and educating, Olivia Muhn and her Burlington Barracudas teammates are building connections through their minor hockey mentorship program

Bernadette Larose
|
August 6, 2021
|
|

Olivia Muhn grew up in the Burlington Girls Hockey Club (BGHC), catching the ends of junior games and rubbing shoulders with older players around the rink.

The admiration she had for those players and motivation she got from those experiences are what inspired Muhn and her U22 Barracudas teammates to form a mentorship program through the BGHC.

The program pairs players from the U22 Barracudas with teams across the BGHC. A couple of players are assigned to a team for the season, attending games and practices and setting up team sessions to offer mentorship and education.

“Growing up, you see the junior team and you get to interact with them, [which] is a really special feeling when you're that young, so we wanted to pass that along to them,” says Muhn, 18, who has captained the Barracudas for the last two seasons.

During the 2019-20 season (before COVID-19 shut down the hockey world), BGHC teams from U9 to U15 had the opportunity to tour the dressing room and join the U22 team for on-ice sessions. Off the ice, the program put an emphasis on anti-bullying education, even working with the Ontario Provincial Police to host informational sessions.

“We got to really know the younger girls and build those great connections with them,” Muhn says. “[The program] really gives you someone to look up to, a role model. Someone that you can follow throughout their hockey career and say, "I want to [follow] in their footsteps.’

“Personally, I've been able to grow up watching [National Women’s Team defenceman] Renata Fast. She's from Burlington as well, so being able to see her go through all these programs and come from the same city as me has just given me something that I wanted to work towards.”

Muhn followed in Fast’s footsteps this week when she joined 22 other NextGen (born in 2003) athletes to participate in Canada’s National Women’s Under-18 Team summer camp. She was part of the U18 camp last summer, but that was a virtual-only experience thanks to the pandemic.

The NextGen group gathered in Calgary on July 26 as part of the BFL National Women’s Program Summer Showcase, presented by Sobeys, practicing and playing a pair of games against the U18 camp teams.

Muhn is no stranger to the big stage; in her 10 seasons with the Barracudas, she has helped Burlington win Ontario Women’s Hockey Association (OWHA) provincial titles in 2012 (U9 A), 2016 (U13 AA) and 2018 (U15 AA), and she helped Ontario Blue reach the bronze medal game at the 2019 National Women’s Under-18 Championship.

She also, thanks to her Korean heritage, skated with Korea’s national women’s team during its preparations for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games.

This fall, Muhn will head south to begin her college career at Yale University. While she leaves behind the Barracudas and the mentorship program, it will continue under the leadership of the incoming players, with hopes that in a few seasons, teams across the OWHA can participate.

“I feel like a lot of hockey is about camaraderie and building those relationships with people around you, whether it be friends, coaches, referees even,” says Muhn. “This program will allow younger and older players to bond and build that connection.”


Please note that all comments are published according to our submission guidelines.

[] Comments

For more information:

Dominick Saillant
Director, Communications
Hockey Canada
514-895-9706
dsaillant@hockeycanada.ca

 

Esther Madziya
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada
403-284-6484
emadziya@hockeycanada.ca

 

Spencer Sharkey
Manager, Communications
Hockey Canada
Office: 403-777-4567
Mobile: 905-906-5327
ssharkey@hockeycanada.ca

 

Recent News
Most Popular
Videos
Photos
2021-22 NWT: CAN 3 – USA 1
Clark scored twice to give Canada the win in the Rivalry opener.
2021 WGIHW: Canadians celebrate women’s hockey
See how Canadians celebrated World Girls' Ice Hockey Weekend in 2021.
2021-22 NPT: WHT 3 – RED 2 SO (Intrasquad)
Dolan scored in the shootout to lead White to the victory.
2021-22 NPT: RED 4 – WHT 1 (Intrasquad)
McGregor scored two and set up two to lead Red to the victory.
Schedule