Ice Hockey Wiki
Vicky Sunohara
Position Forward
5 ft 6 in (1.68 m)
169 lb (77 kg)
Northeastern Huskies
Toronto Lady Blues
Brampton Thunder
Born (1970-05-18)May 18, 1970,
Scarborough, ON, CAN
Pro Career 1990 – present
Medal record
Competitor for Flag of Canada Canada
Women's ice hockey
Olympic games
Gold 2006 Turin Team
Gold 2002 Salt Lake City Team
Silver 1998 Nagano Team

Vicky Sunohara is a three-time Olympian and is known as one of Canada's all-time most popular female ice hockey players. She was once considered to be the best female ice hockey player in the world and was described as the "Wayne Gretzky of women's hockey".

Personal Life

Sunohara was born on May 18, 1970, in Scarborough, Ontario. She is of Japanese-Ukrainian ethnicity.[1] She is a graduate of the University of Toronto.

Sunohara gave birth to twin boys in 2009, following her retirement from international hockey in 2008.[2][3]

Hockey Career

Lighting the Olympic Flame in Nathan Phillips Square as the Vancouver Olympic torch relay passed through downtown Toronto

Sunohara started to play hockey as a small child and the love of the game came naturally to her as her late father, David Sunohara, was a hockey enthusiast who played with the Ryerson Rams in Toronto.[4][5] Sunohara's late father built a backyard rink in the winters and introduced his daughter to skating at the age of two and a half. "My mother said that from the minute my father introduced me to hockey, I wouldn't do anything else," Sunohara commented. "I just loved it." She started playing organized hockey on a boys team at age 5, but was eventually banned from the boys' leagues due to her gender.[6][7] She ended up dominating every level of girls' competition.

Sunohara attended Stephen Leacock Collegiate Institute in Scarborough, Ontario, where she was a standout on the women's ice hockey, field hockey, soccer, and flag football teams. Following high school, she received a full scholarship to Northeastern University in Boston, which is part of the NCAA Division 1 in ice hockey. While at Northeastern, she guided her team to win the ECAC Hockey championship, was awarded the ECAC Rookie of the Year, and was named to the NCAA All-American All-Star team.[8] Sunohara also played hockey for the University of Toronto, where her team won the Ontario university championships in 1990-91 and 1991-92. She was named the Ontario university women's ice hockey Rookie of the Year in 1990-91.[9]

Sunohara also played in the COWHL with the Scarborough Firefighters (1990 to 1994), Toronto Red Wings (1994 to 1996), and the Newtonbrook Panthers (1996 to 1997).[10] Sunohara won a Bronze Medal with the Beatrice Aeros at the National Women’s Hockey Championships in 1999. [11] During the 2000–01 NWHL season, Sunohara played with the Brampton Thunder and finished tied for fifth in league scoring with 42 points. [12]

Sunohara won an Olympic silver medal at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan. She continued with an Olympic gold medal at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S.A., and another gold medal at the 2006 Winter Olympics in Turin, Italy.

Besides the 1998, 2002 and 2006 Winter Olympics, Sunohara represented Canada in numerous international ice hockey competitions. She won 7 gold medals at the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) World Championships, the first one coming in 1990. In total, she won 15 gold medals and 3 silver medals as a member of Canada's national team. Sunohara finished her career with Team Canada with 119 points (56 goals and 62 assists) in 164 games.[13]

Participating in the 2007 Legends Hockey Classic in Hamilton, Ontario with Butch Goring and Geraldine Heaney

When she was not involved in international competition, Sunohara was the captain and assistant coach for the Brampton Canadettes Thunder, a team in an elite women's league, the Canadian Women's Hockey League (formerly the Brampton Thunder of the National Women's Hockey League). She continues to play hockey with that organization. Sunohara has participated in several national championships. She was named the top forward in the 2005 national tournament[14] and her team, the Brampton Thunder, won the national title in 2006.[15]


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