Gracyn Emmerton has plenty of skill in her game. She’s also proven that she can find the back of the net.
The Eastview Wildcats and Aurora Panthers forward brings a lot to the table for both her school and club teams, respectively.
“She’s a very powerful athlete, quite strong on her skates, and it’s interesting, because she plays rugby as well,” said Martin Carl, her coach at Eastview. “You can see that in her, because she’s a very determined skater.”
The Grade 11 student, is playing her third season for the Wildcats but, this year, she made the jump up to the Provincial Women’s Hockey League, moving from the Barrie Sharks midget double-A squad to Aurora’s intermediate double-A outfit.
“It’s been really fun,” Emmerton said. “It’s a lot different from midget double-A. There’s a lot more hard work and practice involved and you really have to put a lot of time and effort into it, but I love it, so that helps a lot. You have to love it to do it.”
Back at school, she’s been part of a perennially-strong Wildcats team, one that rolled through the Simcoe County Athletic Association regular season with a perfect 6-0 record. Emmerton capped off the six-game stretch with a bang, scoring four goals and adding an assist in a 5-1 victory over their nearest competitor, the Bear Creek Kodiaks.
For what it’s worth, Emmerton can’t remember the last time she got four goals in a game.
“It was a long time ago,” she said. “Not this year, for sure. I got three goals at the beginning of the season, but that’s it.”
After scoring the first two early on, Emmerton’s wingers were looking to help get her a second hat-trick of the season.
“All my linemates were setting me up really good with passes,” she said. “They were helpful. They were all trying to get me my third goal.”
After she notched it, Emmerton surprised the Bear Creek netminder with a fourth one from the left faceoff dot with 49 seconds left in regulation time, capping off an incredible performance.
“Goals are hard to come by and to see her have a night like that, it’s great, because it’s a big confidence builder for her,” Carl said.
Even when she’s not scoring multiple goals in a game, Emmerton’s presence is a big help on the Eastview bench.
“She’s got great character,” Carl said. “Everybody likes Gracyn. She’s got a positive attitude all of the time, always has a smile on her face and she’s positive in the dressing room, so it’s great to have a kid like that on your team. You can never have enough of them.”
Emmerton is also one of the top scorers for the Panthers this season, a team she gets to suit up with alongside Eastview teammate Emma Wilson.
“It’s really good, because we live close and drive together and our chemistry on school hockey helps us in (provincial women’s) hockey,” Emmerton said. “We get to know each other and bond more.”
While competing at the provincial level is considerably tougher than at school, Emmerton has truly enjoyed playing for both squads this season.
“(Provincial) is a lot more competitive and intense and you have to be a lot more dedicated, but school hockey is more for fun,” Emmerton said. “Aurora is also fun, but this is more for fun and less serious.”
She has one more year of battling for both school and club ahead of her. After that, Emmerton is hoping to get a shot at the next level.
“I really want to play hockey at a university with a scholarship, so that’s a goal of mine,” she said. “After that, I’d like to play on Team Ontario or Team Canada, too.”
In the photo, Eastview’s Gracyn Emmerton looks for a pass in recent action. Emmerton had a four-goal game for the Wildcats.