Hockey

MacLeod becomes bench boss for Dinos women’s hockey squad

Danielle Goyette left pretty big shoes to fill when she took her hockey game to the NHL’s Toronto Maple Leafs.

But Carla MacLeod, who was appointed Tuesday to fill the head coaching role left by Goyette with the University of Calgary Dinos, has pretty big feet herself in the puck world.

MacLeod will join the Dinos hockey team as the new bench boss effective next Monday, said U of C athletic director Ben Matchett.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Carla aboard to take the Dinos women’s hockey program forward,” Matchett said. “As a player, a coach and a leader, Carla has won at every level, and her track record of academic success and community involvement speaks for itself. She will be a tremendous asset to the women’s hockey program, the athletic department and the university.”

MacLeod joins the Dinos from Edge School, a private sports school for Grades 4-12 located just west of Calgary, where she has led the under-18 female prep Team since 2014. A two-time Olympian and seven-year veteran of Canada’s national women’s team, MacLeod’s teams have excelled both academically and athletically during her time in charge of the Edge program. Student-athletes have recorded a team-academic average of 89% — 98% have pursued post-secondary degrees and 88% continued their hockey careers. In 2019-20, MacLeod’s Edge team captured its first female U18 Prep Division championship in the Canadian Sport School Hockey League.

“I am really looking forward to the opportunity to work with the University of Calgary and Dinos Athletics to continue to grow the women’s hockey program,” MacLeod said. “My experience at Edge School was incredible, and I look forward to this next challenge in helping the Dinos strive to achieve success on the ice, in the classroom and within our community.”

A native of Calgary, MacLeod patrolled the blue-line for four seasons with the University of Wisconsin Badgers, with whom she was a two-year captain and led the women’s hockey program to its first NCAA tournament appearance in 2005. During her final season with the Badgers, MacLeod, a two-time all-american, was named USCHO Defensive Player of the Year and a Big Ten Medal of Honor winner. In 2020, she was inducted into the UW Athletic Hall of Fame.

MacLeod’s international playing career was highlighted by a pair of Olympic gold medals with Canada’s women’s hockey team at Turin 2006 and Vancouver 2010, where she posted a stellar nine points in 10 contests across those Games. She also competed at four IIHF Women’s World Championships — winning gold in 2007 and earning MVP honours in 2009 — as well as five 4 Nations Cups, when she earned an additional three gold medals.

After retiring from the Canadian national team in 2010, MacLeod began her career behind the bench as an assistant coach with theh Mount Royal University Cougars. During her time at Mount Royal, the Cougars won the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference championship in 2012 and transitioned from the ACAC to Canada West.

MacLeod has served in several roles for Hockey Canada and Canada’s National Women’s Program since 2011. From 2012-14, she supported the Japanese Ice Hockey Federation as it won the 2013 IIHF Women’s World Championship Division I, Group A, and qualified for the Sochi 2014 Olympics. MacLeod has also held numerous positions with Hockey Alberta, most recently leading the Team Alberta under-18 female team to a gold medal at the 2019 Canada Winter Games in Red Deer.

MacLeod holds a Bachelor of Science in legal studies from the University of Wisconsin in 2006 and is an NCCP High Performance 1-certified coach. She will take over duties officially Aug. 9, when she will become the sixth coach in the program’s history.

The Joan Snyder Program of Excellence in Women’s Hockey has supported the Dinos women’s hockey team since 2011, enhancing coaching excellence, elite competition and sport services and providing scholarships to student-athletes. The team returns to competition this fall, opening their season Oct. 15 in Winnipeg, followed by their first home game on Oct. 22 at Father David Bauer Arena.

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