Trojan goes from street goalie to championship-winning goal scorer
When SAIT Trojan hockey player Tia Hanson was young, her brother used to tie goalie pads on her legs, put her in front of a net, and shoot all manner of pucks and balls at her.
Whenever she fell, her brother and his friends would stand her up, and shoot some more.
“My brother made me the hockey player I am today, without a doubt,” said Hanson. “I owe a lot to him on and off the ice.”
From cul-de-sac street hockey, Hanson moved on and up to become a gifted hockey forward.
Hanson left her home town of Medicine Hat in 2003 to play for the Calgary Oval X-Treme hockey team.
“It was incredible training with the Olympic girls, like Cassie Campbell and Hayley Wickenheiser… Something I never thought would come true, (but) it did and it was an incredible experience,” said Hanson.
After her stint with the Calgary Oval X-Treme hockey team, Hanson was recruited on a scholarship to play with the University of Wisconsin Badgers in the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
Returning to Calgary, Hanson brings with her some impressive experiences from her days there.
In her freshman year in Wisconsin, she scored the double overtime winning goal in the quarter-final game. Then, in the semi-finals at the Frozen Four (a division of the NCAA), she scored the game- winning goal.
“Those were the two biggest goals of my career,” said Hanson.
Like always, her family was there to support.
“After I scored (that winning goal) the first thing I did was look up in the stands to see my parents,” said Hanson. “I have a lot of pictures from that goal, but coming up the stairs to see my parents after the game meant much more.”
Trojan hockey coach Terry Larson said Hanson’s accomplishments mean she’ll make an excellent addition to the Trojans.
“The experience of playing at such a high level in Wisconsin and the Olympic Oval brings back a wealth of experience that can’t be taught,” said Larson.
Hanson, a fourth-year Architectural Technology student, has yet to play a game due to a torn ACL, but hopes to play on Nov. 20 when the Trojans take on Red Deer College at the SAIT rink.