Gibbons should be paying close attention to Team Alberta's women's hockey team at the 2023 Canada Winter Games. 

Local player Paige Smith has been competing with the team in P.E.I. for the last week. 

Born and raised in the small community, Smith fostered a love for hockey early in her life. 

"I started [playing hockey] when I was super young," said Smith. "My brother and sister played hockey since they were young, and I am the youngest in the family." 

"With them playing I got skates and started playing with them." 

Her minor hockey was spent playing alongside the boys for the first little bit, before eventually moving into the women's league. 

"I played with the boys all the way up until my first year of bantam and then transitioned over." 

Fast forward a few years and Smith now finds herself playing in St. Albert for the U18 AAA Flash, a team that has quite the reputation for being among the very best women's teams in the country. 

"They have been national champions a few times," said Smith. "I know a lot of girls go there for the coaching and for all the different skill development."

Her focus right now, however, is helping her province show well on the national stage. Smith says that she attended a Team Alberta camp in the summer and was named to the team in early December. 

Smith was one of the youngest players to crack the roster. 

"It's usually only [players born in] 2005 and 2006, and for me to be [born] in 2007 it's kind of cool to go this young," said Smith. "To come to the Canada Winter Games is a pretty big deal, especially at such a young age." 

"You get exposed to so many different people and athletes, and talk to people from all over the country." 

It wasn't an easy road to make it here. Smith had been battling injuries early on in the hockey season and missed a few months before returning to the ice in December. 

"My first [injury], it was a partially separated shoulder," said Smith. "In my first game back after that injury, I happened to separate my other shoulder." 

Team Alberta will suit up to play against Team Ontario on Wednesday (Mar. 1) afternoon before heading into the playoffs. 

As for what the future holds for Smith's career, the hope is that she can bring talents down to the United States. 

"So far my plan is to try to go [play] in the NCAA division one down in the States," said Smith. "I hopefully want to play for our national team one day. but as of now, my goal is to go to the States to pursue my college dreams."