On the same day the Prince Albert Mintos wrapped up their regular season in preparation for the playoffs, the team’s management and coaches got a glimpse of what the team will look like next season.
It’ll be at least 30 per cent local.
Team manager Don Fauchoux and coaches Bryan Swystun and Victor Corduban welcomed six new committed players for next season on Saturday at the Midget AAA team’s headquarters at the Art Hauser Centre.
All six are from P.A. and currently play for the city’s Bantam AA and Midget AA teams.
They include Ashton Ferster, Chase Friedt-Mohr, Gabe Klassen, Marek Schneider and Logan Cox, who all play with the Bantam AA Pirates; and defenceman Andrew Urbaniak plays with the Midget AA DQ Chill.
The Pirates and the Chill are both headed to the playoffs for their respective 2017-18 seasons.
As Fauchoux and co. welcomed the new players on Saturday, they looked excited and eager to hear from the team’s coaches.
“Growing up, watching the Mintos, you always want to play for them. You’d be humbled and honoured to play for your hometown,” Urbaniak said. “Being able to sign so early is also very humbling, and hopefully they have a good playoff run this year, and next year we’ll have another good playoff run.”
The 15-year-old defenceman described his type of play as more defence-minded, while also being ready to chip in on offence when called upon.
“I like to rush the puck sometimes and get up in the play, and make good passes and make the right play,” he said.
As for younger hockey players in atom and peewee looking to crack a Midget AAA squad in the future, he advised them to believe in themselves and keep working.
“Every practice, every day, just work on the little things. Keep on working to make yourself better than yesterday.”
Cox also said he felt honoured to join the Mintos, an organization that he says has a long history of greatness and winning.
The chance to continue playing with teammates he’s known for most of his life is an added bonus, he said. “I’ve been able to play with them for the past four or five years. We just have a great bond together, and I hope we can bring it to the Mintos.”
For more on this story, please see the Feb. 20, 2018 print edition or e-edition of the Daily Herald.