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Brette Pettet
Brette Pettet

APT Profile: Brette Pettet

A 5'3 forward from Kentville, hockey athlete Brette Pettet took her talents to Fairbault, Minnesota to play for a national caliber program in Shattuck St. Mary's (SSM) prior to the start of her 8th grade year. She was offered one of the two non-American positions available on the team, and described the offer as “too good to pass up.”

About the challenge of travelling away from home at such a young age, Pettet said, “It first appeared to be a very challenging and daunting task. Leaving as a 12 year old, I had the fear of becoming homesick or the possibility of not even liking the school I would be attending for the next five years.” Pettet continues, “As soon as I began practicing and competing with my teammates, I knew I made the right decision to leave home. Although I missed my family and friends, being away form home has been the best thing that has ever happened to me,” Pettet says, crediting being away from home for the time management skills she developed and her ability to do things independently.

Pettet's decision to head to SSM paid off, as her team was able to travel to San Jose, California, and win a U16 National Championship in her first season. Pettet scored both the game tying and game-winning goal in that final game, giving her the first taste of being a national champion. Pettet and her teammates then repeated as national champions the following year, again at the U16 level. In her Grade 10 season, now at the U19 level, Pettet's squad made it to the final, only to fall short. They did however get their redemption this past season, as Pettet was able to win her 3rd national championship in 4 seasons, and her first at the U19 level.

Following a Grade 11 championship season in which Pettet led SSM in points per game, putting up 26 goals and 39 assists in just 54 games, she received an invite to tryout for the U18 Canadian Women's National Team. “The U18 Canada team invite meant the world to me,” says Pettet. “Ever since I started playing hockey I wanted to one day represent my country. Although this didn't seem like a tangible goal at the time, over the years I have continued to work towards it. Just the opportunity to be selected to try out for this team was an absolute honor.”

Unfortunately, Pettet tore her meniscus while at SSM. Following her surgery, Pettet says she was frustrated after discovering how long the recovery process would take. Pettet now is continuing to work hard on her recovery, attending physiotherapy multiple times per week, as well as training at Acadia Performance Training (APT), in an effort to get back on the ice as soon as possible. She also works closely with the Hockey Canada medical staff to ensure she's on the right recovery plan. “Getting back into a more active schedule has allowed me to become more motivated into regaining my overall strength and most importantly strength in my left knee area,” Pettet says. “As long as I continue to make progress within the next few weeks, I hope to be skating by the end of the month.”

Following her career at SSM, which will end after her grade 12 season in 2016/17, Pettet has committed to attend the University of Wisconsin-Madison and play for the Badgers, while she will study engineering. About her decision, Pettet says, “I was confident when making this decision as I reviewed all aspects of the college and simply could not find one I disliked.” Pettet credits the elite coaching staff as a big part of her decision, as well as the opportunity to get a first class education from a highly reputed university. Pettet says that with both the athletic and academic benefits of the school, “I would not only grow as a player, but also as a person.”

Pettet adds, “I really enjoyed the state school atmosphere that surrounded all of Madison,” Wisconsin's capital city. “Having the school band and so many supportive students would be absolutely thrilling to play in front of.”

“Finally, my decision on attending Wisconsin-Madison was to become a part of a team that was in the top of the league consistently, as I wanted to join a team that would push me to become a better player each day, and hopefully one day, win a Frozen Four Championship.”

When Pettet is home in Nova Scotia, she trains at APT under Strength & Conditioning coaches Elliott Richardson and Josh Crouse, as well as their team of both Junior and Senior interns. “Training in Wolfville with APT is a very special opportunity to me as the sky is the limit. The training programs and guidance provided is without a doubt giving me the best chance to better myself on and off the ice. I know if I apply myself and commit myself to becoming better, APT will give me all the resources to do so,” Pettet says.

Away from training and hockey, Pettet is currently part of a two-year science project with classmate and teammate Maddie Mills, working to build a prosthetic hand for an eighth-grade student at another school in Fairbault, Minnesota, nearby Bethlehem Academy. Working under the guidance of SSM teacher Mike Boone, Pettet and Mills hand aims to perform basic functions as well as be lifelike for the young student, who was born without a left hand. The student has become more self-conscious as she's grown older, and feels that the hand, which will hopefully be completed next year, will boost her confidence a lot. The design work and plastic mold of the hand were completed this past year, with the plan to complete the design and create an aluminum prosthetic for next year. Pettet and Mills are considering using a smart watch to control the hand.

Despite an incredible track record both on and off the ice, including multiple national championship titles, Pettet remains extremely humble and puts full effort into everything she does. Pettet will return to the ice this fall for her final season with SSM, and looking to repeat as a national champion yet again, and capture her fourth national championship in just five years. She then looks forward to wearing a Badger jersey for what's bound to be a successful university career, as well as someday, potentially a Team Canada jersey.

 

– Cam Davidson (contributor to APT)
Nicholas Blanchard
Nicholas Blanchard
My name is Nic Blanchard, my hometown is Kentville, Nova Scotia. In 2012 I was drafted to the Acadie Bathurst Titan of the QMJHL but got played the 2012/2013 season with the Major Midget Valley Wildcats. That year I had my first experiences with Elliott and Acadia Performance Training with the goal of making the jump to the Q. During that summer I worked to become bigger, faster, and stronger to prepare for my second QMJHL camp. That year I made the team and finished the season with 17 points. Last summer my goal was to become not only a better hockey player but a better athlete and to prepare once again for the next upcoming season to take that next jump. I doubled my points that year and was a solid contributor to a young team. Now, I'm back again with Acadia Performance Training to help me build on last year and continue grow as a hockey player. Unlike other hockey players I choose during the summers to stay off the ice for a while and work on becoming a better overall athlete which in turn helps me become a player. Over the last two years I am nothing but thankful for the amount of time and effort Elliott has put into me, helping me be the best I can be and helping me prepare for the seasons ahead.
– Nic Blanchard