A DEDICATED young skater is carving her way to regional ice hockey honours.
Casey Traill, who plays for Whitley Bay Girls Under-16s, has been selected to play for the North of England Under-13 ice hockey team in a tournament in Hull between May 5 and 7.
And the 12-year-old has also been selected to play for the Northern conference under-16 girls’ team following recent trials in Sheffield.
Casey, a Year 8 pupil at King’s School in Tynemouth, said: “I’m really pleased and honoured to have been selected for both sides and I’m really excited at playing for new teams and meeting new friends.
“I enjoy the mixed matches as well as the all-girls’ games.
“The regional tournament is a new challenge I’m looking forward to.”
Casey, from South Shields, became interested in ice hockey during a family holiday to America. Now she trains three times a week.
“When I was four I went to a Boston Bruins game in America and loved the energy and excitement.
“At home there was a local game at the Metro Arena where young prospects were asked to try out.
“I signed up and haven’t regretted it once.
Playing with friends makes it even more fun.
“I don’t mind the body checking and slamming even when I’m defending against big lads because there is plenty of safety gear.
“I enjoy reading the game as defenseman because there is a chance to score too.”
As well as playing for Whitley Bay, Casey is one of two girls playing for Billingham mixed under-16 team and the only girl playing for Billingham mixed under-14 team.
Casey is also making her mark on astroturf.
She scored nine of the goals which made King’s Under-13 hockey team North Tyneside champions this week.
King’s hockey coach Shona Smith said: “Casey has a fantastic attitude and willingly plays in any position on the team.
“She anticipates and intercepts the ball well and bravely takes on players.
“Her close control and speed are excellent.
“We’re really pleased for her.”
Busy Casey is also training for a black belt in Ju-jitsu.