A former goaltender with the McGill Martlets, Amey Doyle has become a key figure in Montreal women’s hockey. Hailing from Smiths Falls, Ontario, she joined the McGill Martlets in 1997 and began her studies in physical education.
For the first four seasons of her career, she was in a backup capacity to Kim St. Pierre. When Doyle became a starter in the autumn of 2001 (as St. Pierre was centralized with the Canadian Olympic camp), she ended up earning conference first-team All-Star honours for McGill after the 2001-02 campaign. In playing with St. Pierre, she had the opportunity to call her a friend.
“It was a lot of fun. Kim and I are very close. We got to be very good friends. Being able to play with Kim was very beneficial to me. It was a great learning experience. I took every day as an opportunity to learn. Her abilities and work ethic were visible in practice. She showed me how to compete.”
After her playing career, Doyle joined head coach Peter Smith on the coaching staff of Martlets for the 2002-03 season. Eventually, Doyle would earn an MA in sport and exercise psychology. During her storied coaching career, Doyle has coached a venerable who’s who of Quebec women’s hockey legends, including Cathy Chartrand, Melodie Daoust, Charline Labonte and Catherine Ward, among others.
As a member of the Martlets coaching staff, Doyle won her first Canadian Interuniversity Sport national championship in 2008. “There is nothing like the first one. Every championship feels a bit different. There was something very, very special about that one. We had worked so hard for a long, long time.
“The year before last, we had lost the national championship final. It ended up being a good experience as the players learned a lot. In the second year, the girls knew the opportunity was there and they were on a mission.”
Led by Peter Smith, Doyle and the coaching staff have created a culture that is envied throughout Canadian Interuniversity Sport women’s hockey. “We worked to build a culture, a program and a championship at McGill. We developed the habits that were needed to get there. They reached their goal and it was the most memorable of the championships.”
With head coach Peter Smith having served on the coaching staff of the Canadian team that claimed gold at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games, Doyle was named head coach of the Martlets in 2009-10.
“It was awesome and I was really fortunate that I was given that opportunity. In that phase where I was at McGill, the opportunity to step into that head coaching role is one that I knew had been coming. I was able to prepare and it was a great team with a great leadership group. It was a great experience that helped improved my coaching and management endeavors.”
In addition to her coaching duties, Doyle has also been the driving force behind the influential Doyle Hockey Development. “It is a hockey development program that I started 15 years ago while I was still playing at McGill. It is something that has developed into a full-time development program for female hockey players.
“Different techniques are developed through hockey season and summer. I am fortunate to have a great staff. We have Kim St. Pierre, Caroline Ouellette, Leslie Oles and Melodie Daoust, among others. What they have done in their hockey careers is remarkable. It is good for young female players to learn from players from what they have done in the hockey world.”
All quotes obtained first hand unless otherwise indicated.