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Trula Seaward is Nov. Coach of the Month

Left: Trula Seaward and her daughter, Emily, during Emily’s first day of hockey. Right: Trula Seaward during her own first day of hockey – Submitted photos

By Jaymie White Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

PORT AUX BASQUES — On Wednesday, Feb. 1, Hockey NL announced that Port aux Basques Minor Hockey’s (PABMH) Trula Seaward had been named ‘Coach of the Month’ for Nov. 2022. Seaward, who has been coaching with PABMH for over five years, started as a player with the program. “I started playing Minor hockey during the 1990-91 season. I spent time at the rink prior to this watching my older brother play, so I wanted to get in on the fun too,” said Seaward. Hockey has always been an important part of Seaward’s life. “Playing hockey was always such a positive experience for me. I was fortunate enough to be able to represent my hometown of Port aux Basques on several occasions, including provincial teams, Canada Winter Games, and Atlantic teams that participated in tournaments in the USA every Christmas. Once I graduated from Minor Hockey, I continued playing varsity hockey at Saint Mary’s University where we won the AUS Championship and went on to compete in the CIS Championships,” said Seaward. Despite her passion for minor hockey, Seaward withdrew to focus on other pursuits. “Once I completed my nursing degree, I stepped away from hockey for a couple of years to concentrate on my career. I always missed it, but after having children I found myself back in the rinks, but this time with coaching. I’ve spent the last five years coaching in our Port aux Basques Minor Hockey Association, with particular focus on the grassroots hockey program, with the Under 7, Under 9 and U9 Girls divisions. It’s been a lot of fun.” Returning to the minor hockey world came with unexpected challenges, such as coaching through a global pandemic. “Coaching during the pandemic was a little more challenging because of all the rules, but Port aux Basques Minor Hockey did a great job making adjustments to make sure all the players still had the opportunity to play hockey. Thankfully, we are gone back to normal now.” A little over a week ago, Seaward received word from Hockey NL informing her that she was selected as recipient of Coach of the Month for November 2022. Seaward is set to receive a coaching package from Hockey NL, which includes a membership to the coach’s site, Hockey NL coach bag, 3M Tape Tiger, FOX 40 whistle, HNL polo shirt and various other items. “I was pleasantly surprised. It was humbling to know that someone took the time out of their day to nominate me. I don’t do things for recognition and most times I try to fly under the radar because I don’t like to be centre of attention, but it was certainly nice to know that someone thought I was deserving of it. And to whoever you are, thank you,” said Seaward. Seaward is happy to continue participating with PABMH. “Being involved with minor hockey, especially with our littlest hockey players, has been very rewarding. To watch parents put their 4-year-old on the ice for the first time, not being able to skate, and watch their progress over those first few months is so special,” said Seaward. “To see them participate in their first Jamboree (tournament) or score their first goal or go on their first road trip with their friends makes all the memories of my childhood come flooding back. I often say if these kids could laugh and smile and have the same positive experiences the way I did when I played hockey then that’s all that matters. Hockey is more than just a sport. It’s the friendships and memories made that the kids will remember the most.” Seaward plans to continue with minor hockey in some way, shape, or form, even if it’s not as a coach. “I haven’t really thought a lot about coaching to be honest. I have two children who play in the Under 9 division and I’m sure I’ll continue to follow them through their minor hockey careers in some way or another.”

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