"I missed you."
Jordan Baxter wrote that on her Instagram page while tightly hugging the under-18 women's world hockey championship trophy as if it were a long lost relative.
In fact, they only spent seven months apart as the Coquitlam product helped Canada claim a second straight gold medal, easily defeating hosts Sweden in Sunday's (Jan. 15) final by a score of 10-0.
The 17-year-old provided an assist on Piper Grober's goal 10 minutes into the contest in Östersund, which made it a 4-0 advantage for the red and white.
Baxter was also 42.86 per cent on face-offs and finished with a +3 rating in the final.
She recorded two assists at the 2023 tournament, matching the points she tallied in her international debut last June when the Canadians won their first under-18 women's world title since 2019.
In total, the Tri-Cities Predators alumna fired 12 pucks towards the net in five games and combined for a 45.55 win percentage on face-offs — a slight improvement from last summer in Wisconsin (43.83).
Canada's game-by-game results were as follows:
- 10-0 win over Sweden (gold medal game)
- 3-2 win over Finland (semi-final)
- 3-1 win over United States
- 4-2 win over Sweden
- 8-0 win over Finland
This was Baxter's final stint with the Canada's under-18 women's hockey team.
As there's no female version of the under-20 world junior hockey championships — despite calls for such a tournament — this means she can now attempt to join the best of the best with the senior national and Olympic rosters.
If Baxter can keep up her current season and add more experience to her résumé down the road, she could create a solid case for landing a potential spot down the road.
Prior to flying overseas, Baxter tallied 18 goals and 30 points in 16 games with Delta Hockey Academy — second among her age group in the Canadian Sport School league (CSSHL).
She's committed to playing for Ohio State University in NCAA Div. I women's hockey starting this fall for the 2023-24 campaign.
Baxter is also one of three B.C. athletes on Canada's under-18 women's worlds roster, alongside Morgan Jackson (Courtenay) and Gracie Graham (Kelowna).
She's also slated to be one of three former Tri-Cities Predators that'll represent Team B.C. at the 2023 Canada Winter Games in P.E.I.