Finishing her freshman season as the Lions’ leading scorer among rookies, it was the launching pad for a string of great achievements for Amy Locke. Setting new career highs in all major offensive categories as a sophomore, netting six goals, nine assists and 15 points, such a sensational season culminated with her first nod to the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) All-Academic Team.
Displaying an equally impressive commitment to elite performance in the classroom, it exemplifies her outlook on the self-discipline needed to effectively balance both sport and academics. Emerging as a three-time CIS academic all-Canadian, it is a strong point of pride, reflecting prominent achievement for one of the Lions’ most popular student-athletes.
“There is a lot more to being a student athlete other than the hockey aspect alone, therefore it’s really important to model all aspects and roles of being a student athlete to younger players. By exemplifying the importance of academics and getting involved with York through sport council I think it demonstrates the other roles that come with being a student athlete and provides opportunities to continue building York’s Athletic program.”
Over the last three seasons, Locke, whose major is kinesiology, has reflected consistency for the Lions offense, ranking in the top three in scoring among her teammates. Having spent four seasons with the Lions, Locke amassed 44 points, while appearing in 87 contests.
Although her junior season brought with it another treasured status as All-Academic, there were other unique aspects that made it her most treasured season yet. Scoring her first career hat trick during said season, achieving the feat in a 5-1 victory against their GTA rivals, the Ryerson Rams, Locke was recognized as York University’s Female Athlete of the Week for the first time ever.
Setting a new career high in goals, the most cherished element may have been the fact that Locke was joined on the Lions roster by her younger sister, a fellow alumna of the Etobicoke Jr. Dolphins, Erin.
Undoubtedly, elite athletic performances represent a significant aspect of Amy Locke’s family tree. In addition to calling her sister a teammate, both are second generation CIS athletes, following in the footsteps of their father Marius, a competitor with the Western Mustangs football team. A cornerback who was part of the 1985 Mustangs team that won the Yates Cup, Marius would play in two Vanier Cup finals and graduate as interceptions leader
Their brother Eric has also shown proficiency at the rink, competing with the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires, Barrie Colts and the Saginaw Spirit, with whom he logged 97 points in the 2012-13 season. Selected by the Buffalo Sabres in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Eric has also played with the St. Francis Xavier X-Men.
Entering her fourth and final season with the York Lions, Amy Locke enjoyed the privilege of another proud milestone in her distinguished career. Gaining the opportunity to don the C on her sweater, the honor of the Lions captaincy was a thrill and a responsibility accepted with a strong sense of pride and responsibility. Such strong leadership also extended off the ice. In addition to membership in the York Sport Council, Locke also served as a mentor in the Providing Athletes with Winning Strategies (PAWS) program, designed to help first-year varsity athletes make a successful transition to university from both an academic and athletic perspective.
Among the honors in Locke’s career with the Lions, she would begin the calendar year of 2017 with a proud honor as she was named the receipeint of the Steve Dranitsaris Leadership award, a bursary which recognizing superior leadership skills within the Kinesiology and Health Science academic program.
This was also complemented by Lauren Dubie and Avery Reeves joining Locke as recipients of the Sheryl & David Kerr Bursary in Women’s Ice Hockey for 2017. Locke would also add to her growing list of achievements by joining Caitlin Lee and Justine Treadwell as co-recipient of the Women’s Hockey Sport Excellence Award. As a side note, it marked the second straight year that Locke earned these honors.
“I feel honoured and privileged to have received the Steve Dranitsaris Leadership Award. This award recognizes leadership and contributions to the School of Kinesiology and Health Science Academic Program and it is an incredible feeling to be recognized for this honour.”
Locke’s first goal of the senior season would take place on October 29 in a 4-2 loss at home to Laurentian. Her best performance would be a multi-point effort, logging a goal and an assist in a 4-3 road win against Ryerson
Being captain of the team this past year was a great opportunity. Throughout my first three years at York I was able to learn from previous leaders to help build my leadership skills coming into this year as team captain. This year we had a great leadership group and supportive teammates which really help to define the experience. I’ve learned a lot as a leader on the team and I think being captain has helped to build my character as a person on and off the ice.
Part of a senior class that included the likes of Lauren Cavarzan, Rianna Langford, Dana Somerville and Justine Treadwell, who joined members of Toronto Police Service in a bicycle journey to Philadelphia, in the effort of raising money for Sick Kids Hospital, Locke was proud to share her Lions hockey odyssey with them. Undoubtedly, the feeling of motivation to be a better player and better person was reciprocated among all of them.
Among Locke’s efforts to give back, she graciously donated her time at the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation School, while also working with the H.E.R.O.S. Hockey Research as a student at Toronto General Hospital in the laboraotry dedicated to renal physiology. Along with Langford, a nursing student and fellow Academic All-Canadian and H.E.R.O.S. volunteer, they are among four student-athletes being recognized with the Lions Legacy Awards. Awarded to graduating student-athletes, it recognizes their contributions to sport in their undergraduate years, while displaying leadership, enthusiasm, dedication and participation.
In their final home game as members of the Lions, this amazing group would make key contributions, leaving a lasting impression on the teammates who shall build on their legacy in the seasons to come. Taking on the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks, it would prove to be a treasured game for Amy.
With the Lions emerging victorious in a 4-0 shutout win against Laurier, her sister Erin would score twice, including the game-winning tally, for the first multi-goal game of her promising career. Finishing her season as the team’s leading scorer, Erin would also be recognized as York’s Female Athlete of the Week.
With Justine Treadwell recording the third goal of the game, it was only fitting that the fourth and final goal was scored by Locke, which would stand as a memorable curtain call in her glorious Lions career. Coincidentally, the assists were logged by a pair of fellow seniors in Langford and Cavarzan as rookie goaltender Lauren Dubie gained the win.
“Senior night had a lot of emotions. It was definitely tough knowing the last few games were coming to an end and I would not be back playing with this team next year. The night was also exciting knowing that I, along with the other graduating players contributed as much as we could to the team.
It is exciting knowing that next year my teammates will step into new roles and have another chance of achieving their goals. What I will miss the most is playing with great players and having great teammates, it was such an amazing experience to play for York and I feel lucky to have had the opportunity to wear a York Lions jersey.”
“All quotes obtained first hand unless otherwise indicated”
Photo credits: York Lions athletics