TORONTO, ON – The OUA women’s hockey league looks to be expanding by two teams.
On Tuesday, sources informed 49 Sports that the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees and Carleton Ravens women’s hockey programs will join the Ontario University Athletics Conference for the 2024-25 season.
The two schools from Canada’s capital city would leave the RSEQ, the Quebec conference, following the conclusion of the 2023-24 season, cutting the RSEQ conference down to just four teams with McGill, Concordia, Montreal and Bishop’s.
Sources tell 49 Sports that the move is being pushed ahead by the Carleton athletics program, which mainly recruits from Ontario-based players. The program has failed to make the RSEQ Playoffs every year since 2012-13. uOttawa would follow Carleton so as to maintain the capital city rivalry.
The RSEQ men’s hockey division dissolved in 1987 when the OUA awarded playing privileges to three of the teams, including McGill, Trois-Riviers, and Concordia, in a bid for them to join a more competitive environment.
The OUA men’s hockey division stands at 19 teams, while women’s hockey would grow by two teams to a total of 14 teams.
While the conference-switching announcement is set for the coming week, sources say the RSEQ is making a last-ditch effort to keep hold of Carleton and Ottawa.
With potentially just four teams left, the RSEQ would have to adjust their four-team playoff structure, making the Ottawa schools’ departures potentially hindering to the future of a league that houses some of the best players in Canadian university hockey.
49 Sports will have full coverage of this story as it develops.