Saturday, 14 July 2018

Bears’ Soyko grows into one of the SFMAAAHL’s best

Star power forward a player to watch in 2018-19

Abby Soyko has developed into one of the Bears biggest stars.
    Abby Soyko has emerged as a difference maker.
    The Prince Albert product began playing for her hometown Northern Bears of the Saskatchewan Female Midget AAA Hockey League shortly before her 13th birthday in the 2014-15 campaign. After four full seasons with the Bears, she has evolved into one of the top players in the SFMAAAHL.
    The skilled winger has improved by leaps and bounds during every off-season. For the past two seasons, she has led the Bears in scoring and piled up an impressive 21 goals and 17 assists in 28 regular season games last season.
    Soyko keeps getting strong, faster and more explosive. You almost can’t wait until Bears regular season rolls around this year to see how much better she will be playing in her 17-year-old and final campaign in the midget AAA ranks.
Abby Soyko (#19) might capture all the Bears career scoring records.
    By the time she is finished her final midget AAA season, Soyko, who stands 5-foot-5, could potential own all the Bears career regular season scoring records. Currently, she has appeared in 108 regular season games piling up 48 goals and 46 assists for 94 points to sit as the Bears third all-time leading scorer.
    She is three points away from equaling Kaitlin Willoughby as the Bears second all-time leading scorer at 97 points. Willoughby, who just recently wrapped up her U Sports career as the star captain with the University of Saskatchewan Huskies women’s hockey team, piled up 34 goals and 63 assists appearing in 96 career regular season games with the Bears from 2008 to 2013.
    Soyko is seven points shy of tying Kelly Regnier as the all-time leading scorer in Bears history with 101 points.
Abby Soyko (#19) has steadily improved during her SFMAAAHL career.
    Regnier, who moved on to play three seasons with the University of Regina Cougars women’s hockey team, collected 50 goals and 51 assists in 83 career regular season games played with the Bears from 2010 to 2013.
    Soyko needs three goals to eclipse Regnier’s record for career regular season goals with the Bears at 50. If Soyko can set a new career high for assists in a season at 18, she will pass Willoughby’s mark of 63 career regular season assists to set a new standard for the Bears.
    If Soyko has another standout campaign, she could potentially finish inside of the top ten in career SFMAAAHL regular season scoring.
Abby Soyko, centre, enjoys scoring a goal for the Bears.
    While she topped the Bears in scoring in the 2016-17 campaign when they won the SFMAAAHL title and advanced to the Esso Cup national championship tournament, Soyko looked way more power making plays last season.
    She led the Bears with five game-winning goals helping them post a 22-5-1 regular season record to finish second overall in the SFMAAAHL.
    Soyko’s play was key in aiding the Bears return to the SFMAAAHL championship series last season, but the Prince Albert squad was swept in the best-of-five set 3-0 by a power Saskatoon Stars side.
    She comes from a really athletic family including triplet sisters Alli and Alex.
    Alli is a gritty forward for the Bears, while Alex plays basketball and soccer and is a member of the Carlton Comprehensive High School senior girls’ basketball team.
    Older brother Steven was a goalie with the Prince Albert Midget AA Raiders, and he exhausted his midget eligibility this past season.
    Soyko has overcome some down times in her career as well.
    Last season, she tried out for Saskatchewan’s under-18 female provincial team and was cut.
Abby Soyko (#19 on right) always respects the opposition. 
    The power forward didn’t allow that development to affect her performance with the Bears.
    In coming back from that setback, Soyko showed a lot of character.
    While she is a highly competitive player on the ice, Soyko is fairly personable off the ice. She socializes easily with players and coaches from opposing teams.
    Soyko is quick to pass on complements publicly if someone from another team is doing well and encouragement if another club from the SFMAAAHL is having success at a major tournament like Esso Cup.
    She is one of the most well-liked players on the SFMAAAHL circuit.
    When the Bears hit the ice, you know you will always get a solid effort from Soyko.
    Similar to former Regina Pats captain Sam Steel in the WHL ranks, you know Soyko will do all the right steps to be ready for each and every game, and you never have to worry about her.
Abby Soyko might play for a while after her days with the Bears wrap up.
    With the way she has improved already, you have to wonder how good Soyko could actually end up being.
    You can likely expect to see her playing for a lengthy number of years after her days with the Bears wrap up.

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