Sasky Stewart. The First Lady of Australian Ice Hockey.
That is not a self proclaimed title, it is instead one given to her by one of her hockey colleagues overseas and you know what, she bloody deserves that title too.
Some will know Sasky as a goaltender in Melbourne, some will know her as a force in Women’s Football in Australia with the Melbourne Victory, Cadel Evans will remember her as the media liaison for the National Championships and most here will remember her as the voice and colourful hair of It’s All Goodall.
Sasky has done a lot for Ice Hockey in Australia. After some time overseas working in the NHL for the Washington Capitals and in the WHL for the Everett Silvertips, Sasky returned to Australia to be later appointed to the AIHL Commission where Sasky went to work to help build the AIHL into what it is today.
Hewitt Sports owes it’s existence to Sasky. In the early days, when we thought a server was another name for a waiter, Sasky kindly hosted the site and helped set us in the right direction.
Sasky returned to the AIHL and Hewitt Sports this year after a few years away. Sasky put her heart and soul into It’s All Goodall and the Melbourne Mustangs, it was only when she announced that she was leaving, did it occur to me what we’d lose.
We’d lose the AIHL’s International Advocate. We’d lose a great connection to the NHL Media world. We’d lose someone that gave their all to the sport just to see it flourish. We could have given her more to do, we could of let her spread her creative wings for the sport. Instead the inevitable happened, Sasky looked and booked in to go elsewhere.
The where is North America, where Sasky will be in Toronto chasing her dreams. It is in North America where she will be better utilised. Become even better known around the leagues and hopefully still be a great advocate for those of us who are on this island, playing the sport we love.
Sport is a tough gig. It’s fast paced, political and ruthless. People like Sasky will come and go through our sport. We just have to learn to utilise, appreciate and communicate with them better.
Best of luck Sasky. We at HSN know you will kick arse in a market that knows your value, where your true potential can be realised.
And from all of us at HSN and Ice Hockey in Australia, thank you.
Andrew Hewitt, Xavier Player, Chris Meister & Myles Harris
Follow Sasky on Twitter at @saskystewart