by Kirk Jessome
There are many parents in the world of sports who have multiple children competing at high levels at the same time, or who have followed in their footsteps. Here at Dalhousie, there has been no shortage of family legacies like the Facca’s, Huck’s and Stammberger’s, just to name a few. The most recent family to join the ranks is the MacIntyre clan.
After graduating from Dalhousie’s faculty of dentistry, Duncan and Anne MacIntyre set up shop in Sydney, N.S. and raised Ainsley, Duncan Jr., Alexandra and Olivia, all four of whom are attending or graduated from Dalhousie. Ainsley, Duncan and Olivia have all suited up for the Tigers.
The eldest of the four, Ainsley, graduated from Athol Murray College in Notre Dame, Saskatchewan in 2012 after completing two years at Riverview Rural High School in Sydney. She joined the Tigers basketball roster the following season, and showed tremendous growth over her four years as a Tiger. Coming off of the bench, as most first-years do, she averaged three points and three rebounds, but by her senior year she started in every game and greatly improved her averages to 11 points and five rebounds per game.
Ainsley was not only an important piece of the women’s basketball team for four years, but she was a standout in the community and in the classroom. She received both the AUS and U SPORTS student-athlete community service awards during the 2015-16 season, and was an academic all-Canadian each of her four years completing a Bachelor of Science with a focus in neuroscience. Ainsley is currently enrolled in a Master of Science degree at the University of Regina.
“My time as a Tiger played an enormous role in shaping my character,” explains Ainsley. “Spare time as an athlete is rare, but the Tiger family places a huge emphasis on giving back to the community. Luckily I was able to master the art of time management by my fourth year, and hopefully being able to balance athletics, volunteering and academics will serve me well in both my personal life and future career.”
Duncan Jr. is a first-year Dalhousie student, but not a true freshman. He recently finished a five-year career in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) with three different teams. He began his journey with the Quebec Remparts, before being traded to Cape Breton. He played in front of his home town of Sydney for two seasons before finishing his career with the Moncton Wildcats. During his final year in the QMJHL, Duncan tallied 17 points in 60 games as a defenceman.
Despite the Tigers getting off to a slow start as a team, Duncan has been able to make an impact on both ends of the ice, assisting on four goals in 14 games played as well as providing a strong presence on the defensive end.
“Having family members that previously attended Dalhousie was definitely influential in my decision to enroll here,” admits Duncan Jr. “The education is second to none, and I get the opportunity to continue playing the game that I love.”
Duncan is pursuing a Bachelor of Science, with a major in neuroscience, just like sister Ainsley.
“I look forward to continuing my program in neuroscience, and hope to continue my studies in a professional program,” he adds.
The youngest of the four, Olivia joined the Tigers women’s soccer squad this season earning a bronze medal with Team Nova Scotia’s women’s soccer team this past summer. She was a standout player for her club team, leading Cape Breton FC to three straight provincial bronze medals from 2014-2016, as well as helping her high school team to a provincial gold, and silver in back-to-back years.
“When it came to choosing a university, knowing that Ainsley already went through the student-athlete process did help me in choosing to come to Dalhousie,” says Olivia. “I had already visited the campus many times to watch her play, so being comfortable with the campus helped as well.”
As a first-year, Olivia cracked the starting roster in 11 of the team’s 12 regular season contests. Olivia was an important part of a backfield that led the Tigers to a third-place standing in the AUS regular season.
Olivia is pursuing a Bachelor of Science, with a focus in neuroscience, just like her siblings. The previous success of her family has a positive influence on her outlook moving forward.
“One of my main goals is to be an academic all-Canadian every year here at Dalhousie, like Ainsley did. Balancing soccer and sciences was challenging this year, so I plan to work on improving all-around next year.”
Led by parents who put an emphasis on academic work, the MacIntyre siblings are taking the next step and combining it with their athletic abilities to become another memorable family legacy in Dalhousie athletics history.