Pair of Eastman Selects Commit to the Cougars


The Women’s Hockey team has signed Eastman Selects defensive duo Laci Gaffray and Mackenzie Dixon from the Manitoba Female Hockey League for the upcoming fall season.

Laci Gaffray who hails from Silver Falls, MB where she enjoys hiking, camping and being outside with her dog is a high achiever on and off the ice. She held honor roll status throughout her high school years and volunteers her time to various programs like Children Wish Foundation, LDB Food Bank and even finds the time to assist Female Peewee prospects with implementing drills.

Gaffray is a strong attacker at the net, during her U18 career with the Eastman Selects scored 7 goals and added 26 assists and was previously selected to attend Manitoba’s U16 Top 27 Camp.

Both Gaffray and Mackenzie were apart of the Eastman U15 2017 “AAA” Provincial Championship team

Head Coach, Tony Bertone praises Gaffray’s ability to jump up into the play with her strong skating. “She has the ability to make that pass out of the defensive zone or is able to find open ice and lug pucks out of zone.”

With Covid having an impact on many graduating players final seasons, Gaffray is excited to get back on the ice to represent the Cougars.

“I am looking forward to being apart of the atmosphere the cougars bring to the rink and meeting my new teammates” said Gaffray.

Mackenzie Dixon, 5’4 defence from St.Malo, MB will also be finishing of her U18 career with the Eastman Selects, toping off her season with three goals and adding 20 assists. Dixon was selected to participate in Hockey Manitoba’s U16 Program of Excellence Camps and was named the U18 Assistant Captain for the Selects from 2019-2021.

Dixon grew up playing hockey alongside her dad and brother at a young age which fueled her competitive nature.

“Hockey has always been in our family and what made me want to continue to play was the competitiveness the higher level I played, the friendships throughout the years and the person I am to this day from the game” said Dixon.

The coaching staff have had their eyes on Dixon ever since she attended the Cougars spring camp when she was just 15 years old.

“Since seeing her game develop over the years in U18, she has proved that she will be a great fit for our program” said Bertone.

“Mackenzie is a stay at home defender and has the ability to play forward which will gives some flexibility to the team, she is relentless on the fore-check and if she is battling in the corners for the puck she is coming out with it.”

Laci has been accepted into the Public Safety program at Assiniboine Community College while Mackenzie is enrolled in Early Childhood Education program for the 2021-22 academic year.