Prince Albert Mintos blueliner Tre Fouquette was part of some provincial hockey history this past weekend in Calgary.
The 15-year-old from Warman helped Saskatchewan’s Under-16 boys program win the WHL Cup for the first time since the tournament was founded in 2009.
“It was a great experience and I had a lot of fun both on and off the ice with the group,” Fouquette said.
“I think all of the boys have a lot of confidence coming back from the tournament as we all come back to play in Midget AAA with our regular teams.”
After going 0-3 in round-robin play, Saskatchewan pulled off a pair of upsets on their way to capturing the gold medal.
They stunned a previously unbeaten Alberta side in a 5-3 encounter in last Saturday’s semifinal and followed that up with a 4-2 triumph over Manitoba the following day.
“I thought we played pretty well in the round-robin, but we just didn’t have that much puck luck,” Fouquette said. “The hockey gods were definitely on our side in the last two games though.
“Our goalie (Kamloops Blazers prospect Dylan Ernst) was on his game, our entire defence played well and made really nice plays, while our forwards did a great job of supporting us at both ends of the ice.”
Fouquette, who is a signed prospect of the Prince Albert Raiders, was paired up with Seattle Thunderbirds prospect Kevin Korchinski during the round-robin and was part of a five-man rotation during the playoffs when Edmonton Oil Kings draft pick Eric Johnston was moved up to the forward group.
“I was happy with the poise that I had with the puck during the tournament and I felt like I was able to settle things down out there,” said Fouquette, who did not record a point during the week.
“The speed there was almost the exact same as it is in Midget AAA and I was able to play my game as a result of that.”
Mintos head coach Danton Danielson believes that Fouquette’s experience at the WHL Cup will be one that can help out the entire team in the coming weeks.
“Not only did Tre play at a high level of intensity with pretty good players, but he also had something concrete to play for in a short period of time,” Danielson said.
“I think that should give us an extra bit of urgency, which is something that we’ve been lacking in our last few games.”
Fouquette was one of four Raiders draft picks from May’s WHL Bantam Draft that took part in the WHL Cup.
Bryce Warkentine had a goal for Manitoba’s silver medal side, while Niall Crocker scored twice for British Columbia’s bronze medal winning team.
Graydon Gotaas found the back of the net once for Alberta’s fourth place squad and was joined on the tournament all-star team by Moose Jaw Warriors blueliner Denton Mateychuk.