CALGARY — Defenceman Tara Watchorn, who won an Olympic gold medal with Canada's women's hockey team at the Sochi Olympics, announced her retirement from international competition on Monday.
The 27-year-old Watchorn, who made her debut with Canada's team in 2011, retired after 46 appearances on the blue line in international competition to begin a new career in coaching.
The native of Newcastle, Ont., is a three-time IIHF Women's World Championship silver-medallist (2011, 2015, 2016) as well as two-time gold-medallist at the 4 Nations Cup (2013, 2014).
"I could not even begin to describe what hockey and this program have done for me as a person on and off the ice," said Watchorn. "My time as a player leaves me with nothing but fond memories and lifelong lessons that I will carry into the rest of my life.
"I am truly grateful for all the opportunities I've had to wear the Maple Leaf across my chest and learn from some of the most talented and amazing women in this country."
Watchorn was a member of Canada's first women's under-18 team that competed at the 2008 IIHF World Championship in Calgary, winning silver. She played in 21 games for the under-22 development team, recording 10 points, and added two gold medals at the Nations Cup (2010, 2011).
"It has been a pleasure to witness Tara's growth from the under-18 level to becoming an Olympian," said Melody Davidson, general manager of national women's team programs for Hockey Canada. "She took great pride in wearing the Maple Leaf and representing Canada, and her strong character and tremendous personality modelled what we expect of our future national team members and Olympians.
"Tara's ability to effortlessly represent her teammates helped fuel our program throughout many seasons and we wish her success as she transitions from playing to her coaching career."