All March, we are celebrating International
Women’s month by showcasing some of the women and girls who show their
Hurricane pride, have paved the way for others or are role models for the future
of our league.
This week we talk to another one of our to U15AA
players, Olivia Fantino, about her hockey history, role models, and reason for
MGHL: Hi Olivia, thanks for participating in our International Women’s Day series. Tell readers a bit about yourself.
Olivia: I am a forward for the Mississauga Hurricanes U15 team and have been playing hockey since the age of 6. I played five years for the Duffield Devils boys hockey organization and from there I joined the MGHL, where I have been playing for two years. At times as the only girl on a boys’ team I felt that I had to work extra hard to prove that I was just as capable as my teammates. I was lucky enough in my hockey journey to have coaches, teammates and parent groups that were supportive and always encouraged me and made me feel welcomed and part of the team.
“At times as the only girl on a boys’ team I felt that I had to work extra hard to prove that I was just as capable as my teammates.”
MGHL: How important is it to you that you have female role models in hockey? Who are your role models?
Olivia: I believe in the saying that if you see it, you can be it. Female role models are very important to young, aspiring female players. When we are able to look up to them and see their success and observe first-hand the realization of many years of dedication, self-discipline, and passion … we are motivated and inspired to give our best. Over the years I have been lucky enough to have exposure to a few Olympic Team Canada players. Victoria Bach is a super talented, highly skilled player but also a very warm and positive person. Laura Stacey is another role model that I see sometimes at a gym where I train. I observe how committed and how hard she works to keep her fitness up during the off-season, and it was a special moment for me to hold her Olympic medal and spend a few moments with her speaking about her Olympic experience.
MGHL: Why did you start playing hockey, and why do you still play?
Olivia: I started playing hockey at a pretty young age, probably because we are a hockey family. My brother who is a few years older than me started playing very young and I spent countless hours in the rinks watching him play, and train. I realized that I had a very keen interest in the sport and told my parents that I wanted to play, too.
From there on I have never doubted my love and passion for the game. I still play the game I love because of all the great coaches, teammates and hockey families that I have met along the way. that continue to fuel my passion for hockey. I enjoy the training and hard work that goes into getting better. Every year I feel good about my success and have a longing to continue learning more about the game and getting better, I hope that this is just the start of a long hockey career for me. It is great to see how far women’s hockey has developed and I believe that the best is yet to come!!!
Read the first post in this series on MGHL coaches Darcy Breakey and Brittney Cosmo here and the second post on U15AA player Addison Gutcher here.